Rolls-Royce Motors Cars North America LLC is losing the executive who relaunched the luxury-car company under BMW AG leadership three years ago.
James G. Selwa, 53, will run Fiat Autos Maserati and Alfa Romeo brands in North America, according to sources. Selwa was tapped by former BMW executive and Rolls-Royce chief Karl-Heinz Kalbfell, who is running Alfa Romeo worldwide.
Earlier this year, Kalbfell confirmed that Alfa plans to return to the United States but would not give a date, saying North America is a must for a brand like Alfa Romeo.
Kalbfell joined Alfa Romeo on Jan. 1 and has said he would recruit several seasoned auto executives from outside the company to run various business units.
He added the title of CEO of Maserati on Feb. 21 after the Fiat group decided to link Maserati to Alfa Romeo. In the United States, most Maserati stores are owned by Ferrari dealers. The Italian brand was relaunched in 2002.
Rolls-Royce says no successor has yet been named to run its North American subsidiary.
Selwa has a proven track record for start ups. Rolls-Royce credits him with establishing the importer organization and the dealer network in North America, where the brand was relaunched in January 2003.
Rolls-Royce sold 169 cars in 2003 and 420 last year.
Selwa is also a veteran of Land Rover North America, where he was marketing chief.