April 20, 2020 / 7:05 AM / a month ago

New Aston Martin boss says focus on SUV launch, restarting factories

FILE PHOTO: A logo on the new Aston Martin DBX at the new Aston Martin Lagonda factory in Barry, Wales, Britain February 21, 2020. REUTERS/Rebecca Naden/Pool/File Photo

(Reuters) - Aston Martin’s (AML.L) immediate priorities will be restarting manufacturing and launching production of its crucial first sport utility vehicle, the luxury carmaker’s new boss, Formula 1 team owner Lawrence Stroll, said on Monday.

The Canadian businessman has just taken charge of the British firm after taking a personal stake as the head of a consortium of investors seeking to turn around the fortunes of a brand famous for its association with James Bond.

Like thousands of UK firms, Aston Martin suspended production at two factories in late March under the country's stringent lockdown against the coronavirus outbreak. It extended the suspension to April 27 last week. (reut.rs/2zfInYq)

"In this first year we will reset the business," Stroll, the company's new executive chairman, said on Monday. (reut.rs/3aoSNSc)

“Our most pressing objective is to plan to restart our manufacturing operations, particularly to start production of the brand’s first SUV, DBX, and to bring the organization back to full operating life.”

He also said Aston Martin would be building its order book and would invest in developing mid-engined cars, while looking at electric car production in the longer term.

Reporting by Pushkala Aripaka in Bengaluru; editing by Patrick Graham

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