Few car companies have had to navigate quite so many bumps in the road as Aston Martin. The British car maker was once advertised for sale in the classified ads section of The Times newspaper, and successfully sold for £20,000 to David Brown. Since then, Aston Martin has rarely been far from difficulty, and today the company confirmed that it was replacing its chief executive officer.
Andy Palmer, the 56-year old British executive who joined Aston Martin from Nissan, in 2014, and took Aston to the stock market less than two years ago, has been replaced by Tobias Moers, who will start in August. The 55-year old German is currently Chairman and CEO at Mercedes-AMG.
As part of his ‘Second Century Plan’, Palmer has successfully overseen the regeneration of the company’s range of sports cars, including the Vantage, DB11 and DBS Superleggera and created its first SUV, the DBX, but the company has losses of more than £100 million and has faced criticism for overloading dealers with its cars, ahead of the company’s flotation.
Shares in the firm have lost more than 98 per cent of their value after being floated at £19. On news of the change in leadership they rose by 31 per cent, to 46p.
Lawrence Stroll, who led a £540m rescue deal of Aston Martin, thanked Palmer for his stewardship of the company: “On behalf of the Board, I would like to thank Andy for his hard work, personal commitment and dedication to Aston Martin Lagonda since 2014. In that time the Company has successfully renewed its core sports car range, with the DB11, Vantage and DBS Superleggera and has brought the brand’s first SUV, DBX to a point of readiness for deliveries to start in the summer. Furthermore, the development of the era-defining Aston Martin Valkyrie hypercar has paved the way for the mid-engined range to come. I would also like to recognise his leadership through the current challenges and uncertainties presented by COVID-19.”