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Aston Martin make Nissan’s Andy Palmer their new CEO

Tue, 02 Sep 2014 00:00:00 -0700

Andy Palmer (pictured) is taking the reins at Aston Martin Lagonda

Aston Martin has effectively been without a boss since Ulrich Bez stepped down from the role last year, but that changes with the announcement that Andrew Palmer – until now, Chief Planning Officer of Nissan – is to step in to the role. There’s no specific start date for Andy Palmer at Aston, but Nissan has announced that Philippe Klein will take up Palmer’s role at Nissan on 15 September, so it shouldn’t be long before Palmer holds the reins at Aston Martin.

But what exactly has persuaded Andy Palmer to jump from a big corporate behemoth like Nissan to a struggling luxury car maker with owners who either want to tug the operating strings (the Kuwaitis) or are looking for a quick return (Investindustrial)?

The only answer can be Daimler.

Daimler may only hold a 5 per cent stake in Aston Martin Lagonda, but we really can’t see Andy Palmer being willing to come home from Japan to take on AML – with its ancient platforms and engines and a debt mountain it struggles to service – unless there was a clear indication that Daimler/AMG are going to be in the driving seat.

And if they are, then Palmer’s experience, expertise and nous should be a perfect fit for Aston Martin to be the brand it always wanted to be – cool and profitable – along with Mercedes/AMG platforms and engines.

By Cars UK