changes to senior management at subaru uk and wider five year plan announced

International Motors, distributor for Subaru and Isuzu vehicles in the UK, has announced changes to its senior management team in its Subaru business in readiness of a busy launch period.

Darren James has been appointed as Managing Director Subaru (UK) from his previous role of Director Parts and Service. Darren, 41, has been with the company for over 20 years. 

Before directing the Parts and Service team from the start of 2010, he held overall responsibility for the imports operation from 2006, and was appointed Logistics Director in 2008.

Of his appointment, Darren said: “I am enormously excited by the opportunity of steering the Subaru UK business in what promises to be a new phase for the Brand.  

“We have some immediate challenges to face but we have some great opportunities ahead of us too with a number of new vehicles to launch, a fantastic dealer network and terrific Brand loyalty among our customers.”

Darren takes over from Paul Tunniclffe who is appointed to the newly created position of UK Operations Director. In his new role Paul heads up each of the three IM Group franchises at board level, and takes on responsibility for IM Group functions including dealer development, distribution and after-sales.

Both appointments take effect from August 1.

Subaru is entering into a busy period of new model launches over the coming 12 months, including entries into vehicle segments which are new for the Brand.

The launch phase begins with introduction of the C-segment XV crossover at the start of 2012, quickly followed by the launch of a new Impreza 5-door and then the exciting new Coupe in the spring.

Subaru’s 5- year plan
Subaru UK’s announcement comes as Fuji Heavy Industries, parent company to Subaru Automobiles, revealed its 5 year plan for the company. FHI’s ambition is to cement Subaru’s position globally by increasing annual sales by 40% to one million units within the next 10 years.

Significant growth is forecast for the US and Chinese markets while growth in the European markets is forecast to increase from 50,000 to 60,000 vehicles.

In addition to the three new cars due for launch next year, the product line-up will be bolstered by the introduction of a further three models before 2016. A hybrid is also under discussion, but no further details are currently available.

The company will continue to focus efforts on the environmental efficiency of all its engines so that an average improvement of 30% in fuel economy will be achieved across the board in all Subaru vehicles.

Subaru’s production facilities will also be expanded as the company plans to begin producing cars in China. Meanwhile, the main Japanese plant in Gunma will benefit from a major refurbishment while the Oizumi engine plant will be expanded to cater for increased Boxer diesel engine production.

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Darren James, Managing Director, Subaru (UK) Ltd

Darren James, Managing Director, Subaru (UK) Ltd

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