Luxury car maker Rolls-Royce will have a British boss for the first time in 14 years, as long-serving chief executive Torsten Müller-Ötvos announced he will step down from the company’s helm at the end of next month.
He will be replaced by Chris Brownridge, the current chief executive of BMW UK, who will take over from December 1.
The last British boss of Roll-Royce Motor Cars was Müller-Ötvos’ predecessor Ian Purves, who left the Goodwood company in 2010.
Chris Brownridge, the current boss of BMW UK, will become the new CEO of Rolls-Royce from December 1st
Müller-Ötvos, 63, is the brand’s longest-serving chief executive since Claude Johnson, the man who brought Charles Rolls and Henry Royce together in 1904 and led the company from 1910 until his death in 1926.
The German described managing Rolls-Royce for almost 14 years as “the greatest privilege and pleasure of my professional life.”
In an official statement from the British brand, he added: “It has been a remarkable adventure developing the company and its world-class employees to the position it enjoys today at the forefront of the luxury industry.”
“I am proud of the role my exceptional team and I have played in making a significant contribution to the UK economy and to global recognition of Britain’s ability to produce the best luxury products in the world.”
On Thursday, long-time boss Torsten Müller-Ötvos announced his resignation on November 30th. He is the company’s longest-serving member since Claude Johnson, the man who brought Charles Rolls and Henry Royce together in 1904
During his tenure, Müller-Ötvos oversaw the launch of Rolls-Royce’s first SUV model, the Cullinan, pictured
With the release of the new Specter coupe this year, Müller-Ötvos also led the brand into the first phases of electrification. The first deliveries to customers are expected to take place before the end of 2023
During his tenure, Müller-Ötvos has overseen the launch of Rolls-Royce’s first SUV model, the Cullinan, led the brand into the first phases of electrification with the release of the new Specter coupe, and expanded the business into new regions such as the Middle East East and China expanded and achieved a dramatic increase in sales.
Annual sales of Rolls-Royce vehicles have risen from around 1,000 units per year in 2009 to a record high of over 6,000 last year.
The company has attracted waves of new – younger – customers through its bespoke division, which creates unique vehicles to the exacting specifications of respected customers.
As a result, the average age of a Rolls-Royce buyer has fallen from 56 to 43 over this period – and one in five customers is now a celebrity.
Rolls-Royce also contributes over half a billion pounds a year to the UK economy and the expansion of its Goodwood factory in West Sussex has increased employment from 300 to over 2,500 people in the region.
Müller-Ötvos’ successor, Chris Brownridge, has been head of the British division of Rolls-Royce parent company BMW since July 2021.
He was previously Head of Sales for BMW UK and Regional Director of Mini for the UK and Ireland from January 2018.
He said he was “honored and honored” by his appointment effective December 1, which will see him take control of the company as it ramps up production of Specter ahead of its first deliveries to customers in the coming weeks.
“It is an extraordinary privilege to be invited to lead this great British brand at such a pivotal moment in its long and remarkable history,” he said.
“I am fortunate to be following Torsten as managing director. Through its vision and ambition for the brand, Rolls-Royce is in an exceptionally strong position today and looks to the future with confidence.
“I am delighted to be part of the Rolls-Royce story and look forward to taking on the challenges and opportunities that lie ahead of us all.”
Daily Mail motoring editor Ray Massey flew halfway around the world to California this summer to be one of the first to drive the £330,000 electric Specter sedan
Specter is powered by a powerful 584 hp (430 kW) electric motor and battery configuration that powers the nearly 3 tonne (2,890 kg) vehicle from 0 to 100 km/h in 4.5 seconds and up to a top speed of 155 km/h. h drives
At almost 5.5 meters long and weighing almost three tonnes, the Specter low loader is electrifying and has real road presence
Oliver Zipse, CEO of the BMW Group, praised Müller-Ötvos’ outstanding leadership as the “crown jewel of the organization.”
He added that his “unwavering commitment, clear vision and exceptional ability to build a strong, focused team have helped make Rolls-Royce the world-class luxury brand it is today.”
He concluded: “We wish him all the best in his future endeavors.”
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