Troubles at Aston Martin Lagonda
“The Company confirms that it is reviewing its management team and a further announcement will be made as and when appropriate.”
That was the official word yesterday from Aston Martin Lagonda in response to speculation that Andy Palmer, its president and CEO, was being replaced by Tobias Moers, who presently heads Mercedes-AMG.
It isn’t exactly a “No.”
Andy Palmer has headed Aston Martin since October 2014. By the time you read this, he may no longer be heading it. (Images: Aston Martin Lagonda)
Palmer has been with Aston Martin since October 2014.
Prior to that, he had been the co-chief operating officer and chief planning officer at Nissan Motor Co., where he’d been since 1991.
On May 13, Aston Martin Lagonda released its Q1 results.
It, like all companies, was impacted by COVID-19.
By the Numbers
That said, the Q1 numbers were less than sterling. It sold 578 vehicles to dealers, down from 1,057 in Q1 2019, or a 45% decline.
Its loss before tax was £118.9 million; it had been a £17.3 million loss Q1 2019.
In announcing the results, Executive Chairman Lawrence Stroll, the Canadian billionaire who infused the company with cash earlier this year to help assure its continued existence, said, “I am extremely pleased that DBX remains on track for deliveries in the summer and has a strong order book behind it extending into 2021.”
Aston Martin DBX is supposed to launch this summer.
The DBX is Aston’s SUV, the type of vehicle that is now a must-have among the ultra-lux marques.
Stroll went on to state, “We are focused on building on the Company’s inherent strengths, its Brand, its engineering prowess, and the skills of its people to enable Aston Martin to become one of the pre-eminent luxury car brands in the world.”
Nothing like a bit of positivity when you’ve spent hundreds of millions on a company’s stock.
In 2019 Aston Martin—globally—sold 5,862 vehicles. That was down 9% from 2018’s 6,441.
In order to make a profit on numbers like that, the margins must be exceedingly high, and the demand has to be sufficient to make those margins matter to the bottom line.
Whether Palmer stays or goes, Stroll et. al. have their work cut out for them.
Last year Buick sold 219,231 vehicles in the U.S.
The previous-generation Hyundai Elantra (2010 to 2015) had the edgy Fluidic Sculpture design forming its sheet metal; it’s bigger brethren, the Sonata, was more visible in this regard, though the smaller size of the Elantra gave the skin a greater tautness than was the case on the Sonata.
Outside of a pickup truck, there is no vehicle that’s sold in greater units than the Toyota RAV4. So when they developed the new generation, they had a whole lot to consider.