Former Jaguar Land Rover boss Sir Ralf Speth will join the board of directors of legendary motorcycle manufacturer Norton Motorcycles.
Sir Ralf, who stepped down as CEO of the Coventry automaker in September last year, will become chairman of Norton Motorcycles parent company TVS Motor Company.
Sir Ralf will take office in January 2023.
Jaguar Land Rover CEO for 11 years, Sir Ralf is hailed for transforming the company during his tenure at the helm.
He was awarded the title of Queen’s Knight in 2018 for his contributions to British industry, and was also made a Fellow of the Royal Society in 2020 for his passion for science.
News of his appointment to Norton Motorcycles comes as the company is reborn under the ownership of TVS Motor Company.
In January, Norton announced plans to move to Solihull’s most advanced manufacturing facility in the brand’s 122-year history.
The company is currently finalizing construction on the new Highlands Road plant, which is expected to open by the end of this year.
John Russell, Interim CEO of Norton Motorcycles, said: “We are truly delighted to welcome Sir Ralf to the TVS Motor Company family.
“We know Sir Ralf is a tremendous leader and his accomplishments in the automotive industry speak volumes.
“This excellent appointment comes at a time when Norton Motorcycles’ business is on a very positive trajectory but with a lot of work still to be done.
“We will soon be settled into our new state-of-the-art manufacturing base and Sir Ralf’s advice will be important to us as a growing UK company with a strong heritage.”
Outgoing Chairman Venu Srinivasan, who will become Chairman Emeritus of TVS Motor Company from January 2023, said: “This is a momentous opportunity for TVS Motor Company to welcome Ralf to its Board of Directors.
“His passion for technology, his eye for products and his commitment to building brands are truly remarkable.
“His thoughts will be of great benefit to TVS Motor as the company prepares for the future.
“Ralf’s in-depth knowledge and guidance will be invaluable to the management team as TVS Motor Company embraces the future of mobility. “
Norton’s new base in Solihull will be the hub for all of the company’s operations, providing a permanent base for all staff.
The new headquarters will house the design, engineering, purchasing, sales, marketing and support teams as well as the production team that will take over the production of the motorcycles.
Some of the specialized tools and equipment previously used by Norton have been transferred to the new Solihull site, but the site is benefiting from substantial new investments.
Norton Motorcycle Co Ltd was acquired by TVS in April 2020.
TVS says it is committed to ensuring Norton’s long-term success as a stand-alone brand, true to its core values and heritage.
Norton Motorcycles has an unrivaled history in motorsport and the brand name is synonymous with Isle of Man TT racing.
TVS Motor Company is the third largest motorcycle manufacturer in India.
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