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Back in 2000 Hyundai Kia CEO Chung Mong-koo refused a request by the company's chairman, and his own father, to step down from the top post of the Korean automaker. Today, Mong-koo is getting the respect he rightly deserves, after being named Asia's top automotive business leader by Automotive News.

The industry publication sited Hyundai's quality improvement and expansion into new segments as part of the reason for Mong-koo's award. This in turn has allowed Hyundai to increase sales globally and increase market share. Automotive News even said he had transformed Hyundai into a "superpower."

Hyundai Motor America CEO John Krafcik was also awarded the honor of being AN's top U.S. executive at an Asian automaker.

In other markets, awards went to Volkswagen chairman Martin Winterkorn as the top European automotive CEO, while Ford's own Allan Mulally was named the top auto exec for an American automaker.

More: Hyundai Kia Boss Named Asia's Best Automotive CEO on
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