Chrysler's Busse has a surprise for you

Interior design boss relishes hiding 'Easter eggs'

Klaus Busse

DETROIT -- Klaus Busse, Chrysler Group's 6-foot-7 head of interior design, is a gentle giant and a playful one, too.

Busse and his team enjoy hiding what they call "Easter eggs" throughout Chrysler Group vehicles for owners to discover.

Easter eggs are fun, unobtrusive art elements that feature landmarks or historical images related to the vehicle.

Examples include the outline of the Jeep grille on the windshield of the upcoming Renegade, a 1941 Willys military Jeep in the black windshield edging on the Cherokee and the Detroit skyline -- minus General Motors' headquarters -- in a rubber mat on the Chrysler 200's console.

Chrysler does not publicize the Easter eggs because it wants customers to discover them on their own.

"There is no process on how we design these things," says the 44-year-old Mercedes-Benz veteran, who stayed with Chrysler after the failed DaimlerChrysler merger. "If it works, we'll do it; if it doesn't, we won't."

He says the Easter eggs can appear anywhere on the vehicle, from a taillight lens to an instrument cluster.

"We're infusing some soul, and some passion, and hopefully, putting a smile on the customer's face," says Busse.

Not all Easter eggs all have been discovered yet.

For example, there's a spider somewhere in the new Jeep Renegade. And more are coming.

"I'm working on a couple right now my boss will never know about," Busse says.

Here's a look at some Easter eggs on 2014 and 2015 Chrysler Group vehicles.

Dodge Viper

Interior rubber mats feature an outline of Germany's Nurburgring, shown at left, and California's Laguna Seca racetracks. The center of each track contains the Viper’s lap time. Some Easter eggs are electronic. Rev the Viper’s V-10 engine into the tachometer's red zone, and a glowing red outline of a Viper head appears as a warning in the center of the tach.

Chrysler 200

Detroit’s skyline, minus GM's Renaissance Center towers, can be seen in a rubber console mat.

Jeep Cherokee

The outline of a 1941 World War II Willys military Jeep is in the lower windshield edging near the center of the dash. Flip up the front passenger seat in the 2015 Cherokee, and you will see an outline of the Hell's Revenge off-road course in Moab, Utah, a favorite place for Jeep aficionados to drive in extreme terrain.

Dodge Charger

The inside of the console lid features a "DB" Dodge Brothers logo and the words "Designed in Detroit."

Ram 1500 Longhorn

The belt buckles on the rear seatbacks have a longhorn bull head embossed in the lower sections.

Jeep Renegade

The upcoming baby Jeep is loaded with Easter eggs. A Jeep grille outline can be seen on the windshield behind the rearview mirror, on the taillights and on the door speaker trim. And the side cladding features the words "no step" in military block lettering.

Dodge Challenger

A silhouette of the car appears in the windshield edging.

0

Shares

ATTENTION COMMENTERS: Over the last few months, Automotive News has monitored a significant increase in the number of personal attacks and abusive comments on our site. We encourage our readers to voice their opinions and argue their points. We expect disagreement. We do not expect our readers to turn on each other. We will be aggressively deleting all comments that personally attack another poster, or an article author, even if the comment is otherwise a well-argued observation. If we see repeated behavior, we will ban the commenter. Please help us maintain a civil level of discourse.

Newsletters