Alex Earle is a car designer currently working at Volkswagen/Audi’s design studio in Santa Monica. A native of Salt Lake City, he moved to California to study car design at Art Center, and stayed. While working his day job, he decided he needed a manageable design project: building his own motorbike! He’d fallen in love with Monster, the bestselling Ducati motorbike designed by Miguel Angel Galluzzi that launched the trend for “naked bikes.” Earle set about adapting the Monster and has gone on to design and make five by hand. “What better way to support environmental sustainabilty than to give a design icon a second life?,” he says. Along the way, he’s learned about what’s involved in crafting a bike, in LA, from scratch.
DnA talked to him about the design process as well as what this week’s LA Auto Show means to him and other car designers. He explains how digitization has changed the way cars and bikes are made, and marketed.
DnA: What are you working on at Audi?
Alex Earle: We do occasional “blue sky” projects and the LA design competition that they host at the auto show, but generally we are working on next generation, production cars.