Michael Simcoe, the man tapped to succeed Ed Welburn, current Vice President of General Motors Global Design, is no stranger to the United States, but he’s returning to America in a big way.
CarsGuide spoke with the Australian native, and the first non-American to lead GM design, about his new position and his plans. Mostly, Simcoe reflected on his time with Holden, as he is credited with bringing the Monaro nameplate back during the 1990s, leading to our reborn Pontiac GTO.
“The whole Coupe and then Monaro concept to a production project was a dream job, once in a lifetime, and all that,” he said. “It is significant, but it would bother me if that is all I seem to have achieved. The Australian design team has done much better work.”
“Maybe, with 33 years in, I outlasted everyone else,” Simcoe said jokingly. He has a rich history with GM design, building up design studios in South Korea and serving six years in the U.S. under the automaker’s design umbrella. He then returned to GM Design Australia while raising his two daughters.
He’s a forward thinking gentleman, and seems genuinely excited about moving design into the future, all while distributing credit accordingly to his team members.
“The next projects are always the best. And it is not me, it is the total team.”
As for his arrival to Detroit, Michigan? Simcoe plans on seeking out a 1963 C2 Corvette split window to add to his current collection of vintage vehicles. There’s also the chore of replacing his beloved Holden Commodore SS-V.
“A 1963 split-window Corvette is what I will be chasing,” he stated as he prepares to embark on a life changing position.