Former Ford president confirmed for Bugatti Lecture at Coventry Car Day

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Thursday 10 May 2012

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The former president of one of the world’s largest and most successful motor companies will give a free talk at Coventry University next month as part of Coventry Car Day.

Sir Nick Scheele, who presided over the Ford Motor Company from 2000 to 2005, will deliver the prestigious annual Bugatti Lecture against the backdrop of the University’s free car extravaganza on Saturday 9th June.

Sir Nick’s impressive career saw him complete tenures as chairman and CEO of Jaguar Cars from 1992 to 1999, as chancellor of the University of Warwick from 2002 to 2008 and as president of Coventry Transport Museum from 2006 to the present. In 2001 he was knighted for services to British exports.

The Bugatti Lecture – entitled “The changing role of the British motor industry in the development and manufacturing of cars” – will take place at 1.30pm in Square One in The Hub, Jordan Well, and places must be reserved in advance.

Coventry Car Day is also set to mark the first public appearance in Britain of Ford’s Evos concept car and the new Peugeot 208 supermini, which were unveiled for the first time at the recent Frankfurt and Geneva Motor Shows respectively.

The event will see a host of prestigious cars – including Ferraris, Lamborghinis and Jaguars – displayed in University Square (opposite the cathedral steps) alongside examples of historic Coventry-built marques Swift and Triumph.

Cars designed by graduates of Coventry University’s world-renowned Automotive and Transport Design courses will also be on show, including the high-performance Ariel Atom and the Mercedes SLS AMG supercar.

A car-themed ‘Question Time’ will take place at 3pm in The Hub after the Bugatti Lecture, and will feature a panel of automotive industry experts chaired by Autocar magazine editor-in-chief Steve Cropley.

Members of the public are being encouraged to book a place in advance and to submit questions to be answered by the panel.

Coventry Car Day will feature:

  • a free motor show with a host of cars from marques such as Ferrari, Jaguar Land Rover, Swift, Triumph, Ariel, Lamborghini, Ford and Peugeot;
  • examples of cars at the cutting edge of low carbon technology development, including the Renault Twizy, a Microcab hydrogen fuel cell vehicle and an electric kart designed and built by students to race in the evGrandPrix at Indianapolis;
  • a Q&A session for members of the public to ask questions and share thoughts with automotive industry luminaries such as Sir Nick Scheele, design guru Richard Seymour and vehicle dynamics expert Damian Harty;
  • a unique opportunity to meet the car designers of tomorrow at the Automotive and Transport Design Degree Show;
  • a symposium (for which tickets will be sold) to debate the future of the car, with a keynote speech from former Jaguar chief executive Sir John Egan;
  • members of the University’s Careers and Employability team offering one-to-one advice on careers in the automotive industry.

Andrew Noakes, associate senior lecturer on the Automotive Journalism MA degree at Coventry University, said:

The annual Bugatti Lecture makes for a fantastic addition to an already exciting line-up of automotive displays and exhibitions at Coventry Car Day, so we’re delighted to be welcoming Sir Nick Scheele to this unique event.

Our list of modern and vintage display cars is growing day by day, and the recent addition of the futuristic Ford Evos concept alongside a selection of rare and historic Swift classics will provide unprecedented variety and flair to the motor show on University Square.

For the latest information on Coventry Car Day, please visit the website or contact Alex Roache, External Press & Media Relations Officer, Coventry University, at

Ford Evos Concept

Making its global debut at the 2011 Frankfurt Motor Show in September, the Ford Evos Concept represents the ultimate expression of Ford’s new global design language, and explores key future powertrain and vehicle technologies. For more information, please click here to visit the official Ford Evos concept website.

Automotive research and teaching at Coventry University

Coventry University offers the widest range of automotive research and teaching expertise of any university – covering the fields of design, engineering, business and media – and students from its courses have been graduating into leading roles in the automotive professions for over 30 years.

As well as Coventry’s globally-renowned industrial design courses – which have produced graduates such as Mark Fetherston (lead designer for the Mercedes-Benz) and John Iley (leading F1 aerodynamicist) – the School of Art and Design delivers the world’s only MA degree in Automotive Journalism, devised and run by a team of experienced current and former car magazine editors.

In 2007 the department of Industrial Design was awarded the Queen’s Anniversary Prize for Higher and Further Education for ‘Educating tomorrow’s leaders in automotive design’, and in 2005 was recognised as having the UK’s only Transport and Product Design Centre of Excellence in Teaching and Learning by the Higher Education Funding Council for England (HEFCE).

The 2012 Automotive and Transport Design Degree Show will be taking place from June 2nd – 10th on campus at Coventry University.