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First it was MG; now it’s Lada that wants to follow in the footsteps of Kia by revolutionising its design. AvtoVAZ design director Steve Mattin has told Automotive News Europe that he wants to replicate the Korean carmaker’s rapid sales growth through a strong focus on design.

“There will be an intensive modernisation with the introduction of a completely new design language and DNA that will change the image of the brand,” said Mattin, who has worked at Mercedes-Benz and Volvo. He said at Volvo his challenge was to give its products a more desirable look, and he would do the same at AvtoVAZ.

The Moscow show-debuting Lada X-Ray concept (pictured) showcases its new design direction. According to Mattin, the new Lada design will have elements of robustness, simple and uncluttered lines and contrast.

What does he mean by contrast? “There is a strong contrast in the seasons between the long cold winter and the really warm summers (in Russia),” he told ANE.

“There is a contrast in the way the wealth is split up between the countryside and the city, the eastern part of the country and the western part. It was some form of contrast I wanted to somehow try and capture in the design of the vehicles.”