Peter Butterfield to Be Succeeded by James Lee

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DETROIT ( -- In a major shakeup at Kia Motors Corp., President-CEO Peter Butterfield is leaving after four years, to be succeeded by James Lee, formerly a senior exec VP at the South Korean importer.

Len Hunt, until recently exec VP, Volkswagen of America, confirmed he is joining Kia as exec VP-chief operating officer effective Oct. 10.

Efforts to contact Mr. Butterfield at home were unsuccessful. Kia could not be reached for comment.

Kia has been trying to evolve from its mid-1990s debut as an inexpensive brand into a well-built brand offering good value.

Kia’s Amanti received the highest rank for a mid-size car in an annual customer satisfaction survey released last month by consultant J.D. Power and Associates. It was the first time a Kia entry made it to the top.

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