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Kenichi Ayukawa new head of Maruti Suzuki

March 15, 2013 at 6:18 AM

NEW DELHI, March 15 (UPI) -- India's largest automaker, Maruti Suzuki India, named Kenichi Ayukawa its new chief executive officer Friday. He succeeds Shinzo Nakanishi, who is retiring.

Ayukawa will also hold the title of managing director of the company.

Japan's Suzuki Motor Corp. is the parent of Maruti Suzuki, holding a 54.4 percent stake.

Ayukawa, who had earlier been with Suzuki's European operations, will take over the India post next month, India's Economic Times reported.

Ayukawa will go to India at a time when the entire car industry is facing difficulties, with sales remaining weak largely because of high fuel costs, observers say.

Maruti Suzuki's India market share slipped to about 38 percent last year, the Economic Times had reported earlier.

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