Unabashed Gearhead Gnarlyness: General Motors

There’s some amazing design work happening at GM these days. Though I have not driven either model (they’re not on the market yet), I’m really impressed by the design work done on two new GM models, the 2014 Chevrolet Corvette and the 2014 Cadillac CTS.

Here’s a view of the new Corvette Stingray:


And here’s a shot of the new Cadillac CTS:


Each car manages to capture the essence of its respective marque while also breaking new ground aeshtetically. These designs feel very confident and bold, and everything from the overall proportions to very small details in the interiors really work and cohere nicely. I can’t wait to see future variants of these two hit the market over the next few years—here’s hoping they’ll ship a CTS-V Wagon!

Great designs like these don’t happen by accident. And it’s not just about having great designers at work, either. For things like this to happen, the entire business system needs to be well, firing on all cylinders. Culture and organizational dynamics are key to making great stuff happen. You can tell a lot about the fitness of a system based on what it produces, and these two cars provide some substantial evidence that GM knows how to generate, develop, and execute good ideas once again. And that’s pretty gnarly in my world.