Lotus has just announced the appointment of a new Chief Technical Officer, while subsequently confirming the departure of the recently hired Chief Operating Officer Frank Tuch. Tuch is leaving for Volkswagen, but not without importing important information to the team at Lotus. According to Lotus ECO Dany Bahar, “We were able to reach a mutually acceptable agreement with VW which still allows Lotus to continue to benefit from Frank’s considerable experience before his departure. Frank will also continue to work for Lotus as an adviser and we wish him the very best of luck in his new endeavour.”
As for the new CTO, Lotus has appointed Wolf Zimmermann, who formerly oversaw the engineering and technical strategy at Mercedes-Benz. The announcement of Zimmermann joining Lotus is just the latest in a long line of executive appointments that includes Bahar and Design Director Donato Coco (both from Ferrari) as well as several other execs from Porsche and Aston Martin. Lotus also recently signed on Bob Lutz as as a consultant, and is looking to do the same with recently-retired BMW-exec Tom Purves.
These moves are all part of a larger plan by Lotus that will see the company set itself up as a competitor to the likes of Porsche and Ferrari, focusing on more mainstream models and higher production volumes. This restructuring plan has already seen Lotus axe its entire dealer network.
Lotus will give a glimpse at its “New Era” at the Paris Auto Show where the automaker is expected to debut four new concept cars.
Official release after the jump:
Media Statement: Frank Tuch
Group Lotus today confirms the forthcoming departure of Chief Operating Officer Frank Tuch (43).
Tuch leaves Lotus at the end of July to join the Volkswagen Group. Commenting on his departure, Group Lotus Chief Executive Officer, Dany Bahar said: “Frank was approached by the Volkswagen Group shortly after agreeing to join Lotus and it was not a consideration for us to stand in his way in pursuing this one-off opportunity. We were able to reach a mutually acceptable agreement with VW which still allows Lotus to continue to benefit from Frank’s considerable experience before his departure. Frank will also continue to work for Lotus as an adviser and we wish him the very best of luck in his new endeavour.”
On a positive note, Lotus is pleased to confirm the appointment of Wolf Zimmermann (49) from Mercedes-AMG. Zimmermann, the former Managing Director Engineering & Production and Chief Engineer Technical Strategy at Mercedes-AMG GmbH. He will join the Lotus management team as Chief Technical Officer on 1 September complementing Lotus’ impressive line-up of industry leading experts.