Cole, who attended our Automotive Influencers conference early this year, has lead Kia UK since August 2009 – seeing the company expand and break sales records.
The new role will see him in charge of all of Kia’s ‘pan-European’ operations – including sales, marketing and aftersales, along with ‘managing relations’ with the factory in Slovakia.
‘I have enjoyed a remarkable three years with a great team here at Kia in the UK and I am excited by the prospect of working to continue the strengthening of the Kia brand right across Europe,’ said Cole.
‘With a European production facility in Žilina, Slovakia, a European design office and European-focused research and development facilities I believe Kia has a great future amongst value-demanding European consumers who also want the very highest quality and distinctive design and appeal.’
‘I am sad to be leaving such a good team in the UK but I know that in Paul Philpott’s hands the UK operation can only continue to strength to strength’
Kia UK’s president Paul Philpott commented: ‘Michael is the ideal person to take on the responsibility of growing Kia’s brand appeal and commercial strength in a European market that continues to face some very big economic challenges.
‘He will find a strong team and organisation at Frankfurt and I know, from my own experience, that all of the European subsidiaries and distributors will welcome his cool, calm and reasoned approach to the car business.