By on June 30, 2015

Osamu and Toshihiro Suzuki

Suzuki chairman and CEO Osamu Suzuki announced Tuesday the appointment of his son and likely successor, Toshihiro Suzuki, to the role of president.

Toshihiro’s appointment is part of Osamu’s plan of bringing aboard a younger management team over the next five years to guide the company, Automotive News reports, with Osamu overseeing the changeover:

We thought we needed to rejuvenate ourselves, and in that case it would be best if I left first. But I am so full of conceit that I cannot do that.

Osamu took on the mantle of president and chief operations officer following Hiroshi Tsuda’ 2008 resignation over poor health. His son, who observers see as his successor since the 2007 passing of son-in-law Hirotaka Ono, will take the mantle July 1.

Toshihiro headed the company’s Iwata factory west of Tokyo and managed mini and compact car production at Kosai early in his career, after which he acted as the company’s liaison at General Motors beginning in 2001. There, he helped facilitate exchanges of technology between the two companies, including those surrounding a jointly developed FCV. GM would divest itself of its 20 percent of Suzuki by 2008, a decade after first agreeing to a joint venture with the company.

Whether Toshihiro or another ultimately takes the helm of Suzuki, Osamu’s successor will have much to carry upon their shoulders, such as defending its stronghold in India while pursuing newer markets, and acquiring financing via new partnerships for new, greener powertrain technologies. They will also have the burden of handling the fallout from the dissolution of the company’s partnership with Volkswagen; the case recently finished arbitration, with both parties awaiting a ruling.

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13 Comments on “Suzuki CEO Appoints Toshihiro Suzuki To President, COO Roles...”

  • avatar

    Now pick up the phone, call Mitsubishi, and get your ass back into the north american market with shared dealerships and ultimately platforms. And this time stay away from the Germans and badge engineered GM/Daewoo crap!

    • 0 avatar

      Do they have much they could sell in the US? Kei cars are out, and most the India stuff wouldn’t be crash-worthy or desirable.

    • 0 avatar

      A Suzuki and Mitsubishi shared dealership? I hope they are selling motorcycles, small engines, and HVAC systems instead of cars,

      • 0 avatar

        This would be a sad little red and blue building, which used to be a Hardees or something. They won’t need a big lot.

        • 0 avatar

          Haha. It can’t even be a top tier fast food place. It’s an old Hardees, Jack in the Box, or Checkers/Rallys instead.

          Maybe they can find a Bennigans or Ponderosa for their larger stores.

          • 0 avatar

            Ha, man Hardees are almost totally gone now. Very rarely do you see one, and they’re always in a Mitsubishi Galant part of town.

            We just got Jack in the Box within the last year or so, that’s a hot fast food place to eat round here. We have two in the city.

            We won’t talk about how I used to eat at Ponderosa as a child a lot. I loved looking at the plastic steaks by the register, where you pointed to how you wanted your gristle cooked.

            And ice cream machine.

          • 0 avatar


            I LOVED Ponderosa as a kid. I haven’t been to one since I was maybe 10-12. Where I grew up, it was replaced by a Red Robin.

            There are no Jack in the Box here, but they were everywhere in Arizona. I don’t trust two tacos for $1 from an American fast food place. Now, some guy on the street corner selling tacos in Tucson? Heck yeah, gimme five.

          • 0 avatar

            We didn’t get Red Robin until later as well. The first one was on the Kentucky side of things, and came around probably 08.

            My Ponderosa food of choice before the ice cream (usually two bowls), was some tortilla chips loaded with taco meat, and some liquid cheese. Sometimes I would eat mac and cheese as well. My parents didn’t see fit to limit my food choice/consumption when we ate out, apparently. Good grief.

            There are still some Ponderosas here, though the market has moved away from buffets, and they are less common (Golden Corral about gone). No more Sizzler either, a place I loved.

          • 0 avatar

            Never been to a Sizzler. The guy from Happy Gilmore asking Shooter McGavin if he wants to go to the Sizzler is my only exposure to it.

            There is a Ponderosa by my house, but it looks like it’s a haunted house in a Western theme. Plus, there are more choices now than where I grew up. I think Big Boy and Ponderosa were the only sit down chains until I was almost in my teens.

  • avatar

    I can’t believe they still sell the Samurai over there.

  • avatar

    Bring a Kizashi 2.0 to North America!

  • avatar

    I wonder what happens to Suzuki since Shinzo Abe wants to ban all kei cars from Japan. Suzuki does small very well and they have the potential. If they’d stop making meaningless mistakes (example Korean built Suzuki Verona…) then I can see Suzuki with a chance.

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