Hyundai CEO John Krafcik Stepping Down, Replaced By Dave Zuchowski

Hyundai Motor America president and CEO John Krafcik will step down from his roles at the end of this year. Krafcik will be replaced by Dave Zuchowski, currently executive vice president of Hyundai sales, on January 1, 2014.

John Krafcik became president and CEO of Hyundai in 2008, after joining the company in 2004 as vice president of product development. Before that, Krafcik worked at the NUMMI General Motors/Toyota joint venture plant, and spent several years with Ford.

Despite taking on his role as Hyundai CEO during the economic recession, Krafcik helped grow Hyundai’s sales and market share, and launched a raft of improved new products. That product renaissance also helped turn around the company’s reputation, as Hyundai quality, styling, and performance improved nearly across the board. Hyundai says that its U.S. market share grew 50 percent under Krafcik’s leadership; annual sales here rose 75 percent, from 401,742 in 2008 to 703,007 in 2012.

“It’s been a sincere privilege and honor to lead Hyundai Motor America over the past five years,” Krafcik said in a prepared statement. “We have many of the best and brightest employees in the business coupled with a committed and talented dealer network that will continue to pay dividends.”

Krafcik’s replacement, Dave Zuchowski, started with Hyundai in 2007 as vice president of sales. He joined Ford in 1980 and subsequently worked with Mazda.

“Dave has consistently distinguished himself as a results-oriented and motivational leader in our industry,” Hyundai Motor Company executive vice president Im Tak Uk said in a statement. “We are confident that he is the right choice to build on John’s momentum and take Hyundai to new and greater heights.”

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