Toronto's Globe and Mail newspaper had a little fun recently with some of the industry's top designers. The paper asked them to pick their favorite cars from other companies.
We won't keep you in suspense. Three of the nine designers quizzed selected Jaguar's classic XKE or E-Type; no other car got more than one mention. Here are the designers and the cars they chose.
- Gorden Wagener, Daimler head of design: 1963 Jaguar E-Type. "The proportions come close to what we have today: long hood, cab back. The surface treatment is still modern and contemporary."
- Erin Crossley, Cadillac color and trim design manager: Peugeot EXALT concept. "From a color and trim standpoint, we've seen a lot of interesting things from Peugeot recently: from fun and sophisticated to modern and serious."
- Guy Melville-Brown, Honda R&D California exterior designer: 1974 Lamborghini Countach. "I was in my hometown, growing up in Brighton, England -- when a white Countach drove down the road with blacked-out windows. That would've been '87 or '88. I was floored. It was something from a different planet. It was so extreme."
- Frank Stephenson, McLaren Automotive design director: Jaguar E-Type (Series 1). "Like a falcon or cheetah in nature, it looks beautiful but is not specifically designed to be beautiful, it's designed to be efficient."
- Julien Montousse, Mazda North America design director: Porsche 911. "It's remarkable. There are no sharp lines. So it's either going to look dynamic, or like a potato. They've had 50 years to work on those highlights and it shows."
- David Woodhouse, Lincoln design director: 1969: Ferrari Dino 246. "I remember my dad taking me out in the car -- he was a really good driver -- and hearing the sound of the engine behind my head. It was so exotic and special."
- Felix Kilbertus, Fiat brand head of exterior design: 1955 Citroen DS."You had a roof, in 1955, that was done in semi transparent fibreglass, a dashboard that was like a spaceship. It put the company out of business because it was so crazy advanced."
- Ian Callum, Jaguar design director: 1970 Vauxhall SRV concept. "The Vauxhall SRV. ... You could put it on a stand today, with bigger wheels, and people would be stunned."
- Alfonso Albaisa, Infiniti executive design director: 1970 Jaguar E-Type. "It inspired my curiosity in the automobile. The car's an extension of yourself; it's liberty from the prison cell of your feet."