LONDON – “The design of the product is only as good as management asks for,” says Martin Smith, design director for Ford of Europe Inc. and the man responsible for the auto maker’s new design language about to take hold on production cars. Sometimes, management asks for low-cost design. This time around, he says, Lewis Booth, head of Ford of Europe and the Premier Automotive Group, told him, “We want drop-dead gorgeous cars.” Smith, speaking at a design conference sponsored by Europe’s ...

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