Hyundai Indias New Head is a Simpleton

By: Deepesh

I am just back from a media event organised by Hyundai. No, it was not the launch of a fancy car. It was, instead the launch of H S Lheem, the new Managing Director and CEO of Hyundai Motors India to the Indian media. It was a necessity as the post-Subbu Hyundai needs someone with whom the media can relate to. It becomes a neccessity also because Mr B V R Subbu, able manager and craftsman that he was, ensured that during his tenure he enjoyed a near dicatator like status in HMIL. There was a numero uno in B V R but there was never a number two. Subbu was also popular in the media, most of whom was easily manipulated by him for his personal and HMIL's advantage.



Mr Lheem came across as an interesting person too. He came across as very affable and warm, in street lingo - a simple dude. However, he seems to be under-trained for the job of the head of HMIL. Its difficult to explain the feeling when the head of a carmaker seems to be too eager to disclose forward model programs to the media. Sample this. New diesel Sonata Embera? End of the year. Diesel Getz? Sure! we are putting a 1.2 -litre diesel in the Getz. By the end of the year again. Getz left-hand-drive for the export market? Nopes. Not on this platform. Maybe on the next one. New Santro? Yes, under testing. People mover? Nopes, nothing in the global portfolio. One-tonne truck? Yes, the Porter is coming. we are struggling with the pricing. Half-tonne truck? No. Sigh! Tough to take on the Tata Ace on pricing. New Accent? How many times do I need to tell you that the new Accent is on its way. Look at the Verna, that's the one. Did we leave anything? If you remember to ask any more forward plans just call on my mobile.
I could imagine the Hyundai India sales team pulling their hair in a corner.

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