Ford has announced that Martin Sander has been appointed general manager, Passenger Vehicles, Ford of Europe, and chair of the management board of Ford-Werke GmbH, effective June 1.

Sander will join Ford following a 25-year career at Volkswagen Group, where he held senior leadership positions in North America, the UK and Europe. Most recently he was senior vice president of Sales, Europe, at Audi AG.

Ford said that Sander and his team will be responsible for accelerating Ford’s delivery of fully electrified and connected passenger vehicles, leading all initiatives that collectively create a superior digital customer experience for Ford passenger vehicles in Europe. He will report to Stuart Rowley, president, Ford of Europe.

“Martin is a highly experienced leader with a wealth of global experience,” said Rowley. “His drive, leadership and new thinking will speed the transformation of our passenger vehicle business in Europe to provide customers with new connected experiences.”

Sander will be based in Cologne, the home of Ford’s European passenger vehicle business and site of the Cologne Electrification Centre, where the first all-electric passenger vehicle will roll off the production lines starting next year.

Born in Hildesheim, Germany, Sander holds a degree in mechanical engineering from the Technical University of Braunschweig. He currently resides in Ingolstadt, Germany, and is married with two children.