Last year, Zhejiang Geely Holding Group (ZGH) acquired a controlling stake in the British sportscar manufacturer from DRB-HICOM and ZGH Chairman Li Shufu has plans to fully release the potential and brand appeal of Lotus, setting Ferrari and Porsche as their benchmark.
Lotus’ new owner has just announced that Feng Qingfeng, Vice President and Chief Technical Officer of Geely Auto Group will succeed Jean-Marc Gales as Chief Executive Officer of Group Lotus effective immediately.
Gales first joined Lotus Group in 2014 and has led the brand to turn its first-ever profit in 2017. He went on to push for new products for the Lotus brand namely a next-gen Elise and Lotus’ first ever SUV. But how can anyone forget that Gales is a hands-on man himself, personally testing new Lotus models himself, even landing himself in trouble with the law.
Gale has chosen to leave Lotus Group for personal reasons and will become Chief Strategic Advisor to Lotus Chairman, Daniel Donghui Li. Li commented: “Jean-Marc has stabilised and turned Lotus to profitability for the first time in the iconic brands history with new industry-leading products and unique business models since joining the company in 2014. Lotus is poised for the next phase of growth under Feng Qingfeng’s leadership, where its expertise in lightweight materials and sportscars-engineering will form part of the wider expansion of Geely ‘s automotive portfolio. At the same time, I will welcome Jean-Marc’s Council as Chief Strategic Advisor to myself and the Board of Directors.”
Feng said: “I am honoured to have been appointed to lead this iconic British sports car group. With Geely’s global synergies and total support, I am confident that Lotus has an exciting opportunity to achieve its full potential as a luxury sports brand, based around its engineering legacy and its future product pipeline.”