Two well-known and highly regarded executives are leaving the Hyundai Motor Group: Albert Biermann, the automaker’s head of research and development, and the head of design management Peter Schreyer.

Both men will, however, stay with company as advisors to nurture future talent through the company’s ranks.

A year into his official tenure as Hyundai Motor’s CEO, Euisun Chung is shuffling the company’s executive deck with at least ten appointments announced today.

The company says the changes are due to the “fast-changing business environment” and will help it to “transform its future business portfolio” via the appointment of “next-generation leaders” to head up the group’s efforts in infotainment, EVs, future technology and autonomous driving.

To make way for these changes, two of the most influential foreign-born executives at the firm are stepping aside.

Albert Biermann spent 31 years at BMW where he started off in the suspension test department before rising to become technical director for sports and touring cars at BMW Motorsport, and eventually the head of engineering at BMW’s M division.

In 2015 he joined Hyundai as the Head of Vehicle Test and High Performance Development. He is credited with sharpening up the dynamics and fine-tuning the ride of the company’s vehicles.

He also spurred the establishment of the Hyundai N performance sub-brand, which has the i20 N, i30 N, Elantra N (i30 Sedan N in Australia), Kona N, and Veloster N on its current roster of vehicles.

Biermann was moved further up the chain of command, and placed in charge of research and development for the automaker in late 2018.

Chung Kook Park, who was formerly the co-CEO of parts maker Hyundai Mobis, will replace Biermann as the head of R&D. Biermann will stay with Hyundai as an advisor based in Europe.

Peter Schreyer, who was head of design management, is also leaving Hyundai’s management team.

After joining as Kia’s design chief in 2006, Schreyer helped develop the brand’s signature “tiger nose” grille, and began giving the company’s products much more desirable styling.

On the back of his success rebooting Kia’s design book, Schreyer was appointed as head of design for the Hyundai Motor Group in 2013.

He was replaced by Luc Donckerwolke, previously Bentley’s design chief and more recently design supremo at Genesis, in 2018. To keep Schreyer at the firm, he was placed in the newly created role of head of design management.

With that role now gone, Schreyer will remain with Hyundai as an advisor and a brand ambassador.

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