Whenever someone in-the-know is asked about the sudden surge in sleek, sporty, powerful cars that have come out of Hyundai and Kia in the last year, they seem to always end up mentioning the same name: Albert Biermann.
Biermann, who has been a key figure in the design and engineering of Hyundai and Kia’s performance vehicles since early 2016, made a name for himself as the head of BMW’s M-division, which produces the Bavarian luxury brand’s most legendary performance vehicles. His migration from one of Europe’s most storied carmakers to Hyundai sent shockwaves through the automotive community; Hyundai only started making its own engines in 1991, 19 years after the birth of the M-series and 85 years after BMW produced its first car.
While some may have been surprised, Biermann, who spent 32 years at BMW, was thrilled to take his expertise to a company with its priorities in the right place and its engineering on the rise. Biermann’s personal motto is, “There is no finish line,” and Hyundai, which has been making high-quality, attractive cars for years but is only now working on true performance cars, is a natural destination for someone with an insatiable desire to innovate.
While Biermann’s fingerprints are all over the Genesis G90 and Kia Stinger, his reason for moving over from BMW was a project that we’ve still only seen glimpses of: Hyundai’s N-division (sounds a little familiar, doesn’t it?), a sub-brand of true performance cars built to set lap records and compete in racing series.
So while Biermann’s star is already on the rise at Hyundai, rest assured: the best days from Hyundai’s new resident design genius are yet to come!