Times have changed at General Motors, the world’s largest automobile manufacturer. It is no longer just a boys’ club. Anne Asensio is a maverick French woman designer who is making waves in GM’s Design Studios, where she is part of a growing group of leading women designers. As an “agent of change,” Anne offers a fresh, outsider’s perspective on automotive design that is impacting cultural changes within GM.
A relative newcomer, Anne joined GM in 2000 as executive director of the Brand Center. In 2003, she was named Executive Director of Advanced Design where she is now responsible for the advanced design studios in Warren, Mich., Los Angeles, Calif., and Birmingham, England. In this role, she provides a diversity of perspectives for developing concept vehicles and plotting new directions in automotive design.
Anne is effusive about the exciting changes she has seen taking place at GM over the past six years and relishes her influence and role in developing GM’s next generation of car and truck designs.
“In the past six years, GM has become a truly global company. We have brought in more women, more diversity and more talent from all over the world,” she says. “GM is now leveraging its products worldwide to create the most innovative designs and highest quality vehicles in its history.”
Anne came to GM from French automaker Renault, where she designed small- and medium-sized cars and utility vehicles. As a woman designer in a largely male-dominated industry, Anne feels strongly that women’s perspectives are critical in the car design process. "Women are influencing the purchases of cars and trucks, leading 80 percent of the decisions. It is time to have more women engaged in automotive design!"
At GM, Anne’s goal is to “change the landscape of the automobile industry.” She feels GM is on the right path and is successfully strengthening its brands through unique styling, improved quality and interiors, and break-through designs.
Anne is an engaging passionate designer with a wit and style all her own. She mentors other women designers to help them communicate their ideas and translate them into language men can understand on the subtle design ideas and concepts we women consumers appreciate most.
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