One looming question for his successor is how Ferrari will cope with more stringent emissions regulations in the European Union and other markets. While the company has said that 60 percent of its models will have a hybrid powertrain by 2022, Camilleri has expressed doubts the brand would go fully electric.
He recently criticized European environmental regulations that aim to cut transport emissions by penalizing the sale of vehicles with particularly inefficient engines, saying they fail to take into account how infrequently some are driven.
“If you take a V-12 Ferrari that only runs 3,000 kilometers a year, probably it has fewer emissions than a very small car that runs every day,” he said during an investor call last month.
Elkann told employees the company respected Camilleri’s decision to retire.
“It is with great regret that I, and all of us in the Ferrari family, have learned of Louis Camilleri’s decision to step down for personal reasons from his role as our Chief Executive,” Elkann said in a letter seen by Reuters.
“Louis’ leadership and passion have guided Ferrari to delivering impressive results,” Elkann said, adding that Camilleri will be available to Ferrari as an advisor.
Elkann is the scion of Italy’s Agnelli family and CEO of Exor, the family’s investment company. Exor controls Ferrari with 36 percent of its voting rights and a direct 23 percent stake. Elkann is set to become chairman of Stellantis, the company which will start its operations next year following the combination of Fiat Chrysler with PSA Group.
Camilleri also is retiring from his role as executive chairman of Philip Morris International, the tobacco giant said separately.
Philip Morris has long been a sponsor of Ferrari’s Formula One racing teams, but Camilleri had no direct automotive experience, which made him a controversial pick to run one of the world’s preeminent car brands.
At Philip Morris, Camilleri’s retirement triggered a succession plan that has been in place for some time, the Marlboro maker said.
Philip Morris CEO Andre Calantzopoulos will become executive chairman. Lucio Noto, the company’s independent presiding director, will serve as interim chair in the meantime. Chief Operating Officer Jacek Olczak will succeed Calantzopoulos as CEO when he takes the chairman spot.
Bloomberg and Reuters contributed to this report