Born on September 5, 1965, Laurens van den Acker studied at the University of Technology in Delft (Netherlands), where he obtained a Master of Engineering at the Faculty of Industrial Design.
In 1993, he moved to Audi as an Exterior Designer in the Ingolstadt Design Center in Germany, where he met J Mays. In 1996 he followed J Mays to SHR Perceptual Management in Newbury Park as a Senior Designer. Van den Acker joined Ford Motor Company, where J Mays had become vice-president of Design, in 1998. Late, he became chief designer of the Brand Imaging Group in Irvine, California. He was involved in designing Ford concepts such as the 427, designed by Joe Baker, Concept U, and Ma; in 2003, he eventually became chief designer on Ford Escape in the Dearborn Design Center, Michigan (USA). In 2005, he became chief designer of Strategic Design of Ford.
Van der Acker also worked for Volvo, but for very short time.