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Aston Martin CEO Dr Ulrich Bez is expected to step down at the end of the year after 13 years at the helm, according to the Sunday Times.

Bez, who turns 70 this year, will reportedly move into an ambassadorial role with the quintessential British sports car marque after effectively transforming the company from an under-performing niche operation into a profitable global business.

After joining the Aston Martin as CEO and Chairman in 2000 under Ford ownership, Bez remained in the top job after it was sold to private investors in 2007.

Aston Martin CEO Ulrich Bez2

He is credited with lifting Aston Martin sales from just a few hundred each year to a peak of over 7000 units in 2010 – a feat made all the more remarkable given the company’s miniscule development budget compared with rival sports car manufacturers.

Under Bez, the company’s headquarters was also moved from its historical site in Newport Pagnell, to a brand-new, state-of-the-art facility in Gaydon, Warwickshire – the first purpose-built factory in Aston Martin’s history.

As CEO, Bez has presided over a raft of new models from the V8 Vantage in 2005 to the recently released new-generation Vanquish and the four-door Aston Martin Rapide S.

Aston Martin CEO Ulrich Bez3

While a replacement has yet to be announced, Bez is expected to stay on during the transition period.