A completely new building constructed to hold the entire PSA Peugeot-Citroen design operation, the ADN is as imposing in appearance as it is in its mandate and underlines the core role the French Group attributes to creativity and to the technical facilities involved in the development of its products. Auto & Design devotes an entire page to various aspects of the new Style Centre in Vélizy Villacublay, on the outskirts of Paris: the significance of the building itself; a profile of the key figure in the project, Robert Peugeot; the relationship between the Group’s two Directors of Design, now relocated to their new premises.
Robert Cumberford analyses the role of a building shaped like an ocean liner and what it means for PSA design, now and in the future. One passionate supporter of the project and the wide-ranging process of change it necessarily implied was Robert Peugeot, a descendent of the Peugeot firm’s founder, who actually worked in Citroen for many years. Serge Bellu met him and paints a fascinating professional and human portrait of the man. Although they share certain facilities and technical services the PSA Group’s two style centres will continue to operate independently and there is no chance of either Director influencing the design work of the other.
Both Gérard Welter, who has worked in Peugeot Design for over twenty years and Jean-Pierre Ploué, Citroen’s Director of Design since 2000, say so very firmly when interviewed by Marzia Gandini. Today, both are hard at work in their new ocean liner premises, but they took time off to report on the initial adaptation phase, the new features they had to get used to and their plans for the future: two absolutely separate sets of plans, naturally.
The article continues in Auto & Design no. 150