David Hanna in front of a classic VW camper vanDavid Hanna in front of a classic VW camper van

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Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles has major team reshuffle as it prepares for electrification era

  • Aftersales boss David Hanna to replace James Douglas as head of sales operations
  • Head of planning and supply James Allitt to move to top aftersales post
  • Head of fleet Claire English leaving for similar role at Audi

Time 3 weeks ago

Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles is having a major staff reshuffle as it enters the electrification era with new models arriving.

The most high-profile change is the appointment of David Hanna, currently head of aftersales, as the brand’s new head of sales operations.

He will be responsible for defining and delivering all sales programmes for Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles, taking over from James Douglas, who is moving to Volkswagen Passenger Cars.


Hanna, pictured above, will also be in charge of conversions and specialist sales, as well as the dedicated Van Centre network. 

His current role as head of aftersales is to be filled by James Allitt – currently head of planning and supply – who has spent the past four years leading planning for Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles.

Hanna also had a previous stint heading up the brand’s customer quality and network development teams.

Leaving the commercial vehicles brand will be head of fleet Claire English, who is to take up an identical role at Audi, which is part of the VW Group, where she replaces James Buxton, who is leaving the company.


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She has been in her current post for two years and bosses say she was ‘pivotal in introducing change and driving improvement in the fleet side of the business’.

Cian O’Brien, director of Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles, said: ‘These new appointments ensure that as a brand we are ready to look after our current customers as well as new groups we will attract in future with the launches of the Caravelle replacement, ID. Buzz and ID.Buzz Cargo, as well as the all-new Amarok. 

‘For commercial vehicle customers in particular, sales and aftersales go hand in hand so it’s great to keep knowledge within the brand, while allowing individuals to develop their careers. 

‘We are sorry to be losing James and Claire, but thank them for their valuable and long-lasting contributions and wish them all the best in their new roles.’

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Hanna and Allitt will take up their new positions from June 1, with English leaving on July 12. Her successor and a new head of planning and supply are currently being recruited.

Andrew Doyle, director of Audi UK, said: ‘We are delighted to welcome someone of Claire’s expertise to the team.

‘At a time when we begin to dramatically expand our line-up of fully electric e-tron models, Claire’s wealth of operational fleet knowledge and focus on customer experience will ensure that she is a very strong asset to the business, and our top management team.’

Jack Williams's avatar

Jack joined the Car Dealer team in 2021 as a staff writer. He previously worked as a national newspaper journalist for BNPS Press Agency. He has provided news and motoring stories for a number of national publications including The Sun, The Times and The Daily Mirror.

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