Volvo Automobiles is restructuring its Americas enterprise and spinning the U.S. and Canada markets right into a separate unit.

Anders Gustafsson, 54, head of Volvo Automobiles Americas and CEO of Volvo Automobile USA, will surrender his obligations March 1, three individuals briefed on the matter informed Automotive Information.

Michael Cottone, a 21-year Volvo veteran and Western Area vp, will take excessive job within the U.S. and Canada. Cottone, 43, will report back to a Volvo Automobiles industrial govt, to not CEO Jim Rowan.

It is unclear if Gustafsson plans to proceed with Volvo or return to Sweden.

Volvo Automobile USA confirmed the reorganization to Automotive Information.

“To assist and guarantee a powerful deal with Volvo Automobiles’ bold objectives for progress, full electrification and an omnichannel buyer expertise, the Americas area construction will evolve, making a devoted group for the USA & Canada,” a spokesman mentioned in an e mail.

Gustafsson’s exit shocked Volvo’s retailers, who appreciated the chief’s straight-shooter method.

“The sellers are sick about it; they do not perceive it,” a seller mentioned. “In your lifetime, you come throughout only a few charismatic leaders that may lead and ship, and [Gustafsson] is considered one of them.”

Cottone’s elevation comes at a essential juncture for the enterprise.

As Volvo pivots to an all-electric model by 2030 and experiments with a brand new gross sales mannequin, Cottone faces a seller community nonetheless determining what the brand new technique means for his or her enterprise.

The Swedish automaker has laid out a technique to promote battery-powered fashions on-line by way of and seller web sites — a prospect that has made some retailers nervous.

Whereas the pandemic and provide shortages have been good for retailer margins, the brand new yr brings change. Cottone and his group should navigate financial headwinds as inflation and rates of interest chew into demand for big-ticket luxurious autos.

In 2021, Volvo Automobiles mentioned it deliberate to promote its battery-electric autos by way of a web based mannequin and ship them to dealerships quite than having retailers inventory lots of of recent vehicles.

In the meantime, Cottone should execute on the model’s aggressive product rollout whereas sustaining the model’s present market momentum.