FOUNTAIN VALLEY, Calif., July 2, 2020 – Brian Smith, the chief operating officer at Hyundai Motor America, will leave the company effective July 6. Smith joined Hyundai in October 2017 and led the company’s introduction of segment-defining vehicles like the all-new Palisade SUV and Sonata sedan. The position of Hyundai Motor America COO will not be replaced at this time as the company continues to prioritize and consolidate its regional management structure around the world.
“Brian is an admired leader who helped Hyundai at a critical time for the organization, and I would like to thank him for his hard work and dedication to the brand,” said José Muñoz, president and CEO, Hyundai Motor North America. “Brian was instrumental in completing our SUV portfolio, launching new sedans, re-organizing and growing the Hyundai Dealer Advertising Associations and working closely with the National Dealer Council in creating a better relationship with our dealer body.”
Smith improved Hyundai’s sales and distribution efficiency and worked closely with Hyundai’s dealerships to improve performance and profitability. He also represented the company at numerous launch events and auto shows. During Smith’s tenure at Hyundai, the company unveiled several all-new models with a focus on SUVs that now represent nearly 70% of sales volume. In addition to Palisade and Sonata, Hyundai brought to market the first generations of Kona, Venue and the fuel-cell Nexo, along with all-new versions of Santa Fe and Veloster.
Smith, an automotive enthusiast, avid cyclist and an aerobatic pilot, spent 30 years at Toyota prior to joining Hyundai Motor America.
Hyundai Motor America
At Hyundai Motor America, we believe everyone deserves better. From the way we design and build our cars to the way we treat the people who drive them, making things better is at the heart of everything we do. Hyundai’s technology-rich product lineup of cars, SUVs and alternative-powered electric and fuel cell vehicles is backed by Hyundai Assurance—our promise to create a better experience for customers. Hyundai vehicles are sold and serviced through more than 820 dealerships nationwide and nearly half of those sold in the U.S. are built at Hyundai Motor Manufacturing Alabama. Hyundai Motor America is headquartered in Fountain Valley, California, and is a subsidiary of Hyundai Motor Company of Korea.
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