General Motors has promoted vice president, Global Design, Michael Simcoe, to senior vice president, Global Design, effective January 1. Simcoe will continue to report to GM president, Mark Reuss.
“Under Michael’s leadership the GM design team has delivered winning design after winning design, demonstrating the ability to connect with customers in all vehicle segments, for both internal combustion engine vehicles and electric vehicles,” said Reuss. “GM Design has also played a pivotal role in the expansion of our business, developing concepts that highlight our path to an all-electric, autonomous future and solutions for new business models like BrightDrop and Cruise.
“Elevating design in the organisation demonstrates how important the integration of design and technology is as we continue to transform the company.”
Under Simcoe’s leadership, GM’s brand design studios have executed award-winning products across several categories. Examples of EVs created during Simcoe’s leadership include:
Buick Wildcat concept and upcoming Electra EVs
Cadillac CELESTIQ and LYRIQ, GMC HUMMER EV pick-up and SUV and Sierra EV
Chevrolet Equinox EV, Blazer EV and Silverado EV
Other milestone vehicles include the 2020 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray, the 2021 Cadillac Escalade and the first 2023 GMC Yukon Denali Ultimate.
During Simcoe’s tenure leading GM Design, he set high expectations for cross-functional collaboration guided by customer’s needs. He also reshaped the organisation to deliver new products, focussing on detail and execution, and creative rethinking of the business, inspiring growth in electrification, autonomy and software. His teams guided thinking around a delivery ecosystem that became the BrightDrop brand, designed the Cruise Origin purpose-built autonomous vehicle and developed a view of a Cadillac-branded personal autonomous portfolio with Halo concepts. Simcoe also guided the infusion of the latest virtual and immersive design development technologies into the team’s daily work and increased collaboration across GM functions globally.
Simcoe has led GM Global Design since 2016. He has built a reputation for applying global design excellence and creativity to the company’s distinct brands and for inspiring the team to deliver winning products to the market. This team has also gained new perspectives and reached new markets under Simcoe’s leadership, including the current expansion into Europe.
Simcoe joined GM in 1983 as a designer at Holden in Australia and became director of GM Asia Pacific Design in 1995. GM named him executive director of the division in 2003, leading the development of the new GM Korea design operations. Simcoe became executive director of North American Exterior Design the following year, responsible for products such as the GMC Terrain, Buick LaCrosse, Chevrolet Camaro and Equinox and Cadillac CTS.
Prior to leading GM Global Design, Simcoe was responsible for design in GM’s international markets.
He holds an Associate Diploma of Art Industrial Design from Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology. Inducted into the Design Industry Australia Hall of Fame in 2018, Simcoe is a member of the College for Creative Studies (Detroit) Board of Trustees.