The rumors were true: Albert Biermann, the Hyundai R&D boss who previously worked at BMW, is retiring from his post. Chiefly responsible for vastly improving the ride and handling of cars made by all three of Korea's big car brands (Hyundai, Genesis, and Kia), Biermann will, however, stay on in the presumably more hands-off executive technical advisor role in Europe.
A man I once called "the Phil Jackson of building sporty sedans," Biermann joined the Hyundai Motor Group in 2015 after a 31-year stint at BMW. During his time at BMW, he made a name for himself with a laundry list of legendary M products including the E46 M3, E39 M5, and 1M. At Hyundai, he ushered in multiple stellar performance vehicles such as the Kia Stinger, Veloster N, and Elantra N while having a hand in massively improving the driving dynamics of nearly every car to come out of Korea. He did all this as he also spearheaded the firms' E-GMP electric car platform that underpins the new Ioniq 5.
Needless to say, wherever Biermann lands, greatness usually follows. I speak for all of us here at The Drive when I say that his presence in the industry will be missed and that, hopefully, some of his knowledge and expertise will be passed on to the folks taking over his reins so that Hyundai can keep giving us The Good Cars.
“It has been a tremendous pleasure and honor for me to work for Hyundai Motor Group and lead our engineering division to become a ‘second-to-none’ R&D center in the entire automotive industry," the 65-year-old said in a statement. "Now, our vehicles standout apart from the competition in many aspects and embody our strong engineering expertise and commitment.
"Korea will remain as my second home, and all of my colleagues at Hyundai Motor Group will always be considered part of my family. I would like to recognize that our success has always been based on the strong collective spirit of the many talented people at Hyundai and I will value our unique achievements wherever I live.”
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