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Revving up for the next Spotlight on Surrey event

World leading automotive innovation taking place in Surrey will be the focus for the next Spotlight on Surrey online event on Thursday May 20.

Innovation is in the very DNA of Surrey, with a long and proud history of being at the forefront of developing new technologies and when it comes to the automotive industry some of the biggest names in the sector call Surrey home.

An impressive line-up of speakers from the industry will join Tim Oliver, Leader of Surrey County Council, Rt Hon Jeremy Hunt, and Amanda Solloway MP, Minister for Science, Research & Innovation. Industry speakers include:

  • Gordon Murray, Chairman of Gordon Murray Group Ltd. Having spent 20 years as Technical Director to two Formula One teams from 1969-1990 Gordon Murray has a wealth of technical, design and engineering experience. He was made a Commander of the British Empire (CBE) in recognition of his contributions to the motorsport and automotive sectors over the past 50 years.
  • Jamie Corstorphine, Director of Product Strategy, at McLaren. He is responsible for the definition of McLaren Automotive’s future product roadmap. Joining McLaren in 2011, Jamie has been with the brand as it established itself as a major competitor in the supercar industry following the launch of the 12C.
  • Helen Mutter General Manager, Product & Production Planning KIA UK Ltd. Helen has spent over 20 years in the UK automotive industry across a variety of Sales & Marketing roles. Her current role is leading the Product & Production Planning team at Kia UK, with responsibility for the UK product line up specification and pricing – including a growing portfolio of Electric Vehicles. She also has responsibility for the Production Planning team, securing supply for the UK market.
  • Jon Hunt has worked in the automotive industry for over 30 years and is currently the Manager for Alternative Fuels at Toyota GB where he has worked for 27 years in a variety of sales and marketing roles in the UK and Europe for both the Toyota and Lexus Brands. Regularly involved in presenting, discussing policy, and the wider adoption of low emission technology Jon is the Chair of the Society of Motor Manufacturers Hydrogen Fuel Cell Task Force and from 2017 Jon has been recognised every year in the top 20 of the Green Fleet Top 100 most influential list and was also awarded Alternative Fuel Champion in 2020.
  • Andrew Whitehead CEO of Protean Electric. Prior to joining Protean Andrew helped to lead Honda F1’s engine development in Europe, after a number of technical and management roles for Motorsport businesses in Europe and the US.

Speaking ahead of the event, Andrew said: ““Protean Electric is an automotive technology innovator, and the world leading developer of in-wheel motors for electric vehicles.

“In a world where the sales of EVs are a bright spot in an otherwise beleaguered car industry, it remains the case that EVs are not yet widely available at the price and performance that car consumers are looking for.

“The car industry faces existential challenges around how to survive in a world where their most profitable combustion engine products are being regulated out of existence.

“Competition to own EV market share is coming from all parts of the technology landscape, like Apple, and new and innovative entrants, like Rivian (with offices in Woking in the UK) and Arrival, even as the sales of personal cars fall.

 “I will talk about the market drivers for the accelerating shift to EVs, and how our ProteanDrive in-wheel motor technology is helping to solve those problems for car manufacturers and consumers alike.

“And whilst leafy Surrey is not the first place that people may think of when contemplating cutting-edge automotive technology, as today’s panel proves, it is a hub in the UK for automotive innovation.

“Our location here gives us access to the most important thing any business can have – a talented pool of people, shared by the other innovators who are based here, plus great transport links and access to the market across the UK, Europe and beyond.”

And Jon Hunt explained that during his presentation he would talk about Toyota’s biodiverse Surrey EcoHQ and how the company has innovated and evolved to tackle the specific challenges of the industry whilst respecting the environment and demands of customers.

”Toyota has grown into one of the world’s largest companies and today produces approximately 10 million vehicles a year.  

“The sales and marketing company for Toyota in the UK and has been based in Surrey since the early 1980’s and sells over 110,00 Toyota and Lexus cars and commercial vehicles a year.

For more details visit https://bit.ly/33TX4wt. Tickets are free for Business South Champions and any businesses located in Surrey. Non Champion Tickets and any businesses outside Surrey will be reviewed on application.

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