Rick Haas, Mahindra Automotive North America CEO, to retire

Now that Mahindra & Mahindra Ltd. has won over U.S. trade regulators with the redesign of its off-road Roxor vehicle, the role of the Indian manufacturer in the U.S. remains up for debate, the outgoing CEO of its North American business said Thursday.

Richard “Rick” Haas says now is the right time to depart while India’s largest SUV maker undergoes a global leadership transition and reviews opportunities on where to conserve cash and invest in projects with profit potential. Meanwhile, the company is on track to resume production of the Roxor side-by-side before the end of the year.

“In the short term, that’s going to take the better part of this calendar year,” Haas said. “Beyond that, everyone’s doing a lot of soul-searching around the globe. The pandemic has caused everyone to take a step back.”

Expansion of the automotive business in the United States “depends on how successful the launch of the Roxor is,” he said. “There’s potential the team will get back to some kind of expansion in the United States. After this, it’ll depend on what the new management decides to focus on.”