DETROIT -- BorgWarner Inc. CEO James Verrier is stepping down at the age of 55 and will serve in a nonexecutive advisory role until he retires in February.
The powertrain parts supplier said COO Frederic Lissalde will replace Verrier, effective Aug. 1.
“For us it's not a surprise,” Verrier told Automotive News. “I think the word I've read the most so far in the media is 'orderly' and I think that's a great word to describe the process we're going through. Frankly, it feels really good, and the right time on all fronts.”
Verrier, who took the helm in early 2013, led a decision to leave self-driving cars to others and focus on providing propulsion solutions. Its parts are used in combustion, hybrid and electric vehicles.
A need for higher fuel efficiency is driving demand for BorgWarner's products, including turbochargers, which help vehicles burn fuel more efficiently.
Verrier also oversaw the company's $950 million deal to buy Remy International Inc, a maker of electric and hybrid motors, to better compete in the fast-growing market for electric and hybrid vehicles.
“To take a company that was viewed a little bit [as] a traditional powertrain company [and] to reposition that to be a propulsion company focused on delivering products for combustion hybrid and electric vehicles, and delivering the type of results that we're delivering -- that makes me feel really good,” Verrier said. “And that's not just me, that's the whole team ... and frankly, that's what makes me feel comfortable to be able to transition out of the role.”