Mark Lloyd, the designer behind the unique styling of the new Citroen C4 Cactus -- which has eye-catching features such as bubblewrap-like Airbumps on its sides -- thinks the car fits well into the French automaker's history. ''A little bit of quirkiness is a good thing for a true Citroen,'' said the British-born head of the C4 Cactus design team. Lloyd, who joined PSA/Peugeot-Citroen in 1989 after five years with Jaguar, provided insights into the genesis of the C4 Cactus during an interview with Automotive News Europe Correspondent Olive Keogh.
Why did you choose the name Cactus?
Part of the ethos of the Cactus design project was to create something very efficient. The name was chosen because a cactus consumes little. A cactus also protects itself in aggressive environments. The role of the Airbumps on the C4 Cactus is to protect the car in the aggressive environments that are our towns and cities today.
What was the design objective?
To revert to simpler forms. The current fashion in car design is for highly developed surfaces with a lot of structure, movement and accent. The Cactus is about simplicity.
Why give the car Airbumps?
We wanted to introduce different materials and textures to contrast with the super purity of the surfaces. They are an integral part of the design. They have a protective function but they also give the car its graphic identity and make it immediately identifiable.