Top Execs In Auto Industry All Over The Lot

These are fast times for top auto executives. Mary Barra steers GM through crisis. Mark Fields gets a Boy King coronation at Ford.

Fiat boss Sergio Marchione rides the Chrysler comeback. And Carlos Ghosn juggles top jobs at Nissan, Renault and now Avtovaz, makers of the Russian Lada.

The ascent of former VP of Sales Dave Zuchowski to the helm of Hyundai at the beginning of this year was a well-timed segway to the South Korean company’s rambunctious emergence as a major player, nearly doubling US sales in the last 10 years.

Following CEO John Krafcik, an engineer, who gave Hyundai much needed product credibility, Zuchowski adds the easy smile and smooth finish of a good salesman.

At the sprawling modern Hyundai manufacturing complex in Montgomery Alabama, which produces 400,000 cars a year, from body stamping to engine machining, Zuchowski and his team are clearly focused on the money makers.

While the just revised premium Genesis sedan gets the swooning red carpet raves, the Alabama plant is churning out the new 2015 Sonata mid-sized sedan and the economical Elantra, which together comprise 60 percent of Hyundai’s US sales.

This George Polgar of GT Marketing for KYW News Radio.

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