Chris Hayes is the new Director of Lexus in the UK, following the retirement of Ewan Shepherd after a long career with Toyota (GB) PLC and five years leading the Lexus brand. Hayes takes up his new position on 1 January 2022, moving from his current role as the company’s Director – People and Planning.
Hayes foresees an exciting time ahead for Lexus, commenting: “I am delighted to be leading the Lexus UK team during such a transformative time for the industry and our brand. Everything we do at Lexus is driven by a relentless focus on delivering an amazing and uniquely personalised, customer experience.
“With our leading range of hybrid, plug-In and battery electric technologies, we offer today’s consumers a sustainable and genuinely flexible powertrain choice based on their real-world personal mobility and driving needs. I am looking forward to starting a new and exciting era for Lexus as we accelerate towards our ambition of becoming a 100 per cent electric brand in the UK by 2030.”
Hayes’s Toyota (GB) career began in 2003 with various field-based roles before he took up an overseas assignment as a marketing manager at Toyota Motor Sales USA in California. Returning to the UK in 2009, he led the Sales Planning and Vehicle Marketing teams before promotion to Marketing Director in 2013. In 2015 he transferred to Toyota Motor Europe in Brussels, taking on responsibility for European pricing strategy and operations, returning the UK three years later for his most recent directorship.
Ewan Shepherd’s retirement brings to a close a successful career with Toyota (GB) PLC that has spanned more than 22 years. Reflecting on his time at Toyota and leading Lexus, he said: “It has been a privilege to hold a number of leadership roles during my time with the company. It is a dynamic organisation with a great team of energetic, fully engaged people and a great place to work.
“I am proud of what my team has achieved in my years as Lexus Director. We have consistently grown all areas of the business to record levels, while achieving the number one position in the Auto Express Driver Power Survey for customer experience in four of my five years at the helm. This is a testament to an amazing range of cars and an outstanding retail network.
“Lexus is in a good place – and primed for further growth in the years ahead. I wish Chris Hayes the best of luck in his new role and have every confidence that he will take the brand on to greater success.”