Philpott returns to UK

Time 8:00 am, April 5, 2012

KIA’S Paul Philpott is to return to the UK to take the position of president and chief executive officer of Kia Motors UK and Ireland.

Currently chief operating officer of Kia Motors Europe in Frankfurt is returning to the UK to take the role. It’s the first time a non-Korean has been appointed to such a role at any Kia subsidiary in Europe.

Philpott, 45, was managing director Kia Motors (UK) Limited from 2007, until he moved to Frankfurt in 2009 and will return to the Weybridge base from the start of July this year.

Brandon Yea, president of Kia Motors Europe. said: ‘The Kia brand is now Europe’s fastest growing thanks to Paul Philpott and he knows very well that we are determined to strengthen local management at all our subsidiary companies in order to become a truly global automotive organisation.

Philpott added: ‘I am very sad to leave an excellent team at KME but I am truly excited by the task I have been asked to undertake. Of course I am very happy to be moving back to the UK and to have the chance to work again with an excellent team and some of the best dealers in Europe.

‘With Michael Cole [Kia UK MD] and everyone at Weybridge, I look forward to putting Kia right into the top rank of premium volume manufacturers in the UK and helping to ensure our dealers and customers will have an ever-improving experience with Kia.’


Kia hit a new sales record in March, without scrappage sales, of 11,178 units.

The figure is up almost 12 per cent on the 2011 figure of 9,986, and Kia had a record first quarter with 17,211 cars delivered to customers.

Only 2010 saw better total figures for Kia in the midst of the Government’s Scrappage Incentive Scheme when Kia sold 12,277 cars in March including 5,062 under the programme.

Kia also saw its market share figures hit a new high of 3.0 per cent in March and 3.06 per cent for the year so far.

Michael Cole, managing director, said: ‘What is particularly heartening is that our performance has not come on the back of a single model. Picanto, Rio, Cee’d and Sportage have all done extremely well and we have also seen strong growth across all channels – and that is good both for the brand and our dealers, who are doing an excellent job around the country.’

James Batchelor's avatar

James – or Batch as he’s known – started at Car Dealer in 2010, first as the work experience boy, eventually becoming editor in 2013. He worked for Auto Express as editor-at-large and was the face of Carbuyer’s YouTube reviews. In 2020, he went freelance and now writes for a number of national titles and contributes regularly to Car Dealer. In October 2021 he became Car Dealer's associate editor.

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