After more than 60 years in the industry, Graeme McLean is taking a step back

After more than six decades in the motor industry, well-known industry identity Graeme McLean is stepping back, however he won’t be retiring or disappearing altogether.
His career started with a three-year cadetship with one of New Zealand’s major Stock and Station Agency companies, training to take up a role as a grain agent.
However, following this Graeme took up the opportunity in 1960 of joining his eldest brother Bob who had returned to New Zealand after extensive auto electrical experience overseas.
Bob had at that point purchased an old established auto-electrical business in Christchurch and Graeme was to run the office, spare parts store and assist in the workshop alongside his brother and one other tradesman.
Over the following period of almost twenty years the company developed to a team of thirty-four with Graeme as General Manager, with ten tradesmen in the workshop, two in the instrument division, a team in the warehouse, five sales people in the field and extensive sales throughout New Zealand with major brand lines.
Throughout this period Graeme took an active part in New Zealand Motor Trade affairs in roles such as Chairman of the Canterbury Branch Auto-electrical division, President of the Canterbury Branch of the MTA, a branch representative on the executive and ultimately chairing the National Vehicle Repairers Division of the NZ Motor Trade Association.
He was a Motor Trade Association representative on the Canterbury Chamber of Commerce and was ultimately elected in his own right to the Chamber and became the inaugural Chairman of the Chamber Small Business Group.
In 1978 Graeme left the family business after accepting a role as National Sales Manager and ultimately Marketing Manager of Hella-New Zealand Limited, based in Auckland.
The next major step was in 1988 with a move with his family to Australia, with Graeme taking up the appointment as Marketing Director for Aftermarket Sales at Hella Australia Pty Ltd in Melbourne – a role he filled with distinction over the following almost nine years winning both national and international marketing awards.
Graeme then took up the role of General Manager – Sales with Siemens VDO with responsibility for both Aftermarket and OE sales.
Following this appointment, he spent four years in management roles in the automotive chemical manufacturing and distribution field before finally establishing his own Marketing and Public Relations Company in January 2003.
Graeme McLean and Associates Pty Ltd has successfully worked with some of the major brand names in the Australian automotive and specialised manufacturing market up until semi-retirement at the end of 2021.
“I have been privileged to work with some amazing people and companies in the industry and in the media over a long period since 1960, however it was time to pass the work on to younger people who more easily adapt to the challenges of changing markets,” Graeme said.
“I will continue to work with feature stories in the industrial area and lesser work also in the automotive field for the immediate future as to retire completely is something I could not imagine.”

To contact Graeme, email