Ford Motor Company today announced that Kumar Galhotra will serve as vice president and president of Lincoln, effective September 1. Galhotra was previously vice president of Ford engineering, and he will oversee all Lincoln product, sales, and marketing efforts globally. Malhotra's responsibilities will include a focus on the brand's new sales effort in China.
Previously, Ford marketing vice president Jim Farley oversaw both Ford and Lincoln brands, but Lincoln lacked its own dedicated leader. Ford spokesperson Susan Krusel told Automobile that Farley recommend Kumar Galhotra for the position, while Farley himself will remain involved with Lincoln for the immediate future. She also noted that Kumar Galhotra has more than 25 years of product engineering experience having already led engineering efforts for all of Lincoln's current vehicles.
"These changes… make clear we are serious about Lincoln as a world-class luxury brand and that product excellence and innovation are what will deliver growth and define our entire company going forwarding," Ford president and CEO Mark Fields said in a statement.
Krusel wouldn't comment on whether appointing a senior executive with an engineering background would give Lincoln greater freedom to distinguish its cars from Ford products. She echoed Fields' statement, saying the appointment is, "Part of our commitment to Lincoln to develop it into a world-class brand. It was the right time to have a dedicated leader."
Jim Holland will replace Kumar Galhotra as vice president of Ford engineering. He was previously appointed engineering director for Ford Asia Pacific in 2011, leading a team of engineers in Australia, China, India, and Taiwan.
Ford Research and Development PostFord also announced that longtime Ford engineer Paul Mascarenas will retire October 1. Paul Mascarenas spent 32 years with Ford and is currently chief technical officer and vice president of research and advanced engineering. He joined Ford in 1982, previously serving in product development roles that saw him involved with vehicles like the Ford Taurus, Edge, and Fusion.
"Paul Mascarenas is a very dedicated and talented leader who has served within product development and advanced engineering around the Ford world for the past 32 years," Ford group vice president of global product development Raj Nair said in a statement.
Paul Mascarenas will be replaced as vice president of research and advanced engineering by Dr. Ken Washington. Washington comes to Ford from Lockheed Martin, where he was most recently vice president of the company's Space Technology Advanced Research and Development laboratories. In that role, Washington oversaw 700 space engineers.