General Motors Appoints Ex-Tesla, Google Exec as New Head of Manufacturing

By Jace Dela Cruz

Mar 13, 2024 02:31 AM EDT

General Motors (GM) announced Tuesday that Gerald Johnson, the long-time executive vice president of the company's Global Manufacturing and Sustainability, will retire after a 44-year tenure.

Johnson's successor will be Jens Peter "JP" Clausen, an industrial leader with extensive experience in global manufacturing, product engineering, and scaling operations. Clausen was a former executive of Tesla, Lego, and Google.

US President Joe Biden (2nd R) stands on the GMC Hummer EV production line as he tours the General Motors Factory ZERO electric vehicle assembly plant with General Motors CEO Mary Barra (R) in Detroit, Michigan on November 17, 2021.
(Photo : MANDEL NGAN/AFP via Getty Images)

General Motors Appoints Jens Peter Clausen as New Head of Manufacturing 

Jens Peter Clausen's previous roles include spearheading the scaling of electric vehicle propulsion systems at Tesla's Gigafactory 1 and leading innovations in biomanufacturing at Zymergen. 

Clausen's expertise extends to simplifying product portfolios and driving technological innovation, making him well-suited to lead General Motors' Global Manufacturing and Sustainability division.

READ NEXT: LG Chem Signs Deal With GM to Build $3 Billion EV Battery Cathode Factory - The Largest of Its Kind in the US

Mike Abbott Steps Down From General Motors

In addition to Gerald Johnson's retirement and Jens Peter Clausen's appointment, General Motors also announced that Mike Abbott, the executive vice president of Software and Services, would be stepping down due to health reasons. 

Abbott, who joined the Detroit-based automobile manufacturer last May, was credited for advancing the company's software design, development, execution, and quality testing.

Baris Cetinok, the current vice president of the Product in Software and Services, has been named interim head of Software and Services while a search is conducted for Abbott's replacement.

CNBC reported that the changes would take effect on April 2, but General Motors said Johnson would remain with the company until the end of the year to work with Clausen for a smooth transition.

READ MORE: Elon Musk Reveals Plans for Cheaper Tesla EV in 2025 Amid Chinese Competition

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