Ferrari is, among other things, a cult of personalities. It just tries to keep those personalities to a manageable number to include its founder Enzo Ferrari, his successor and longtime chairman Luca Cordero di Montezemolo and whatever two talents happen to be filling the seats of its F1 cars – Michael Schumacher, Kimi Raikkonen, Fernando Alonso, Felipe Massa... You don't tend to hear the names of any of the thousands of others who make the company what it is, but today Marco Mattiacci takes a well-deserved curtain call.

Head of Ferrari's operations in North America – as well as those in Central and South America – for little over two years now, Mattiacci is credited with increasing the brand's market share on this side of the Atlantic by some 20 percent. And due to that success, he has been named 2012 Automotive Executive of the Year.

The award is one of the oldest in the business, having started in 1964 and featuring such notable past honorees as Alan Mulally, Bill Ford, Jr., Henry Ford II, Carroll Shelby, Rick Wagoner, Bob Lutz, Lee Iacocca, Carlos Ghosn, and Dieter Zetsche. Born in Rome, Mattiacci is cited as the first Italian to receive the award (Iacocca's lineage apparently notwithstanding), and will officially receive the award at a ceremony on April 20 in Detroit. Follow the jump for the full announcement.
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DETROIT, Mich. February 22, 2012 – The prestigious 2012 Automotive Executive of the Year Award will be presented to Marco Mattiacci, President and CEO of Ferrari North America. Mattiacci will receive the award surrounded by more than 200 automotive executives, suppliers, and Ferrari guests, customers and enthusiasts at an invitation‐only luncheon held at the Detroit Athletic Club (DAC) on Friday, April 20, 2012.

"Since taking the helm of Ferrari's North American operations, which includes North, Central, and South America, Marco Mattiacci has grown sales in these markets 20 percent. This impressive growth has allowed Ferrari to hold its top position in the ultra‐exclusive, yet increasingly competitive segment of the global luxury automotive industry," notes Robert Djurovic, executive director of the Automotive Executive of the Year Award program, and director of automotive services North America, DNV. "This year, the nominating committee chose to recognize Marco Mattiacci as an emerging leader whose accomplishments are certainly impressive and worthy of recognition. Mr. Mattiacci and his team's success in sustaining and expanding the culture of one of the world's most significant and exclusive brands are at the heart of this nomination."

By honoring Mattiacci, the first Italian executive awarded the Automotive Executive of the Year Award, Djurovic says the automotive industry is recognizing Ferrari North America's innovative marketing and sharp focus on customer satisfaction, ownership experience, and brand integrity. "Ferrari reminds us all of what we love and cherish about the automotive industry-passion, design, racing, and best‐in‐class technology," says Djurovic.

"I am extremely honored to receive this award on behalf of my Ferrari colleagues and the North American Dealer network," says Mattiacci. "After more than 55 years in North America, Ferrari's largest market, we continue to showcase the company and its innovation, the growth of our product offerings, and consistently place a priority on the relationship with our clientele and enthusiasts. I am thrilled to be a part of the team that represents this iconic brand here in North America, and I would like to thank Ferrari Chairman Luca Cordero di Montezemolo and top management for giving us the vision, trust, resources, and outstanding products to succeed."

Since 1964, the Automotive Executive of the Year Award-the longest‐standing and most historically relevant award in the industry-has recognized excellence in industry leadership. Past recipients include Alan Mulally, James O'Sullivan, Jim Press, Carroll Shelby (Lifetime Achievement Award), Bill Ford, Jr., Dieter Zetsche, Henry Ford II, Rick Wagoner, Bob Lutz, Carlos Ghosn, and Lee Iacocca, among others.
(Note: For a complete list of past winners, award history, photos, and more, please visit

The Automotive Executive of the Year Award nominating committee includes industry media, analysts, and automotive supplier CEOs. DNV has been the main corporate sponsor of the award program for the past several years.

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 3 Years Ago
      that horse has a long neck and tiny head
      • 3 Years Ago
      Am I the only one who's trying to figure out what he did that makes him so special? I still say Mulally is one of the best CEO's of all time for what he's done to Ford in less than five years.
        • 3 Years Ago
        Totally agree. All I can think of is that his timimg was right as he was appointed around the time when Ferrari started creating the buzz campaign on their upcoming new models
      • 3 Years Ago
      • 3 Years Ago
      A donkey could sell Ferraris...Specially in a time when the rich are getting richer and the poor are getting poorer. IN times when the people can only afford to drive Ford Fiestas, the rich are being able to afford ANOTHER Ferrari. I cannt blame them, no one has to sell me a Ferrari, just knowing what it can do and looking at a 458 Italia is enough for me to want it, hearing the sound of its engine will make me desire it, and if i was rich, first thing id do is buy a 360 modena spyder in order to fill the requisites to get me a 458. Even if its a Donkey selling it to me...
      • 3 Years Ago
      20% increase, whats that 3 cars? Please, if someone is buying a Ferrari they are buying a Ferrari. This economy has been very good to a select amount of people (128 Bentleys in feb) no "selling" required here. Give it to the boss over at HYUNDAI, those boys are shaking it up.