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Akio Toyoda will step down as Toyota’s CEO on April 1

He will become the company’s chairman

Akio Toyoda will not be leaving the company, but is instead assuming the position of chairman. PHOTO FROM TOYOTA

Akio Toyoda, the current CEO of Toyota Motor Corporation, has announced that he will step down as president and chief executive on April 1 (the start of the next Japanese fiscal year) after 14 years to assume the position of chairman (succeeding Takeshi Uchiyamada).

Toyoda, who assumed the position of CEO back in 2009, had to face many challenges, such as coming fresh out of the global recession and the 2011 earthquake and tsunami. Despite all the setbacks and new competition (especially in the electric era), he managed to keep the brand at the top, also rejuvenating and erasing the brand’s “economy car manufacturer” image with the introduction of the Gazoo Racing brand.

Koji Sato will be assuming the position of CEO at Toyota Motor Corporation. PHOTO FROM LEXUS

He will be succeeded by Koji Sato, who is currently president of Lexus and Gazoo Racing Company. He started his career at Toyota back in 1992 before becoming chief engineer of Lexus in 2016. He then became president of the luxury and motorsports brands in 2020. He became Toyota’s chief branding officer in January 2021.

According to Reuters, Toyoda said that Sato was chosen because he “worked hard to learn Toyota’s philosophy,” and that “the CEO needs youth, energy, strength.”

Sam Surla

Sam is the youngest member of our editorial team. And he is our managing editor (believe it or not). He specializes in photography and videography, but he also happens to like writing about cars a lot.