IHS Global Insight
April 16, 2014
The CEO of General Motors (GM), Mary Barra, has announced the company will create a new engineering team aimed at improving vehicle safety and quality, according to an Automotive News report. Speaking at the North American Dealers Association conference in New York, Barra said the new "global product integrity" team will "provide the highest levels of safety, quality, and customer service."
Barra did not go into the specifics of how the team would operate, but touted the same approach that the company has used to try and improve the ride and handling of its vehicles in recent years and applying it to safety performance.
This was Barra's first public engagement since appearing at two congressional panels, during which her refusal to answer many questions drew much criticism. In the interview, Barra gave prepared statements in response to questions from Automotive News editor, Jason Stein, saying that the newly appointed global safety head, Jeff Boyer, would serve on the new engineering team, and that the team would be committed to ensuring GM follows a "very streamlined" process for finding potential problems and fixing them.
GM's new chief has been under intense pressure and the constant glare of the media spotlight since taking up the position, and has suspended two engineers and replaced the heads of HR and PR in recent weeks as she strives to repair GM's damaged reputation.
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