The Irony: Former Saturn boss hired by Penske to lead Smart USA

Jill Lajdziak

It’s no surprise by now that General Motors executives always seem to surprise us with their departure from Detroit. Former Saturn general manager Jill Lajdziak has been hired by Penske Automotive Group to become the company’s┬ásmart USA Distributor LLC unit as vice president, sales and marketing.

Lajdziak’s appointment comes as Smart’s sales continue to drop off after its second year in the market. Smart currently sells the Smart ForTwo on the U.S., which is sold exclusively by┬áPenske at 79 smart “retail centers.”

In September, Penske terminated its discussions with GM to buy Saturn, which was led by Lajdziak.

According to Smart sales totaled 22,880 in 2008. Throughout 2009, Smart has moved just 13,731 units of the ForTwo.

– By: Omar Rana

Source: AutoObserver