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Peter Schreyer, the design guru who led Kia's transformation, has been appointed president - the first non-Korean in the company's history to hold that title.
Schreyer, 59, joined Kia in 2006 from the Volkswagen Group to create a new design-led product strategy for the brand and quickly became known for his “Tiger-nose” family look.
Since then the design team, based in Russelsheim, Germany, has unveiled a series of concept cars and dramatic new products including the latest Sportage, the new cee'd family, larger models for sale in the Korean domestic, such as the Optima and Quoris, and mass-market models such as Picanto and Rio.
Schreyer has publicly commented on his commitment to Kia and his desire to remain with the company to continue the challenge of making Kia the most design-focused Korean car manufacturer.
The final production model in Kia's range to come under his design philosophy - the Carens MPV - will be released in 2013, along with the first sporty model in the cee'd range.