3 Women Killing It In The Automotive Industry In Singapore Right Now

Kimberley Ng
rosie the riveter we can do it

From race-car driving to fighting for sustainability, meet three women in Singapore leaving their mark in the automotive industry


In a fast-changing automotive industry on a small island like ours it might be easy to get left behind. But these three women have carved out a space for them at the top. From being Singapore’s first female race-car driver to being leaders in the workplace, these women show that the attitude and pride in the work you do will take you far.

Irene Nikkein

In 2021 the Indonesian-born and Singapore-raised Irene Nikkein took over the role of Director for the Asia Pacific Region at Rolls-Royce Motor Cars. Describing herself as someone who is innately drawn to challenging the status quo for continuous improvement, it’s no wonder that her impressive track record that’s led her from BMW Asia to Mini Japan has now led her to Rolls-Royce. 

Having immersed herself in so many countries and cultures, Irene notes having gained “a meaningful experience towards cultural differences” from her time working and living in Japan. Keeping with her desire to continuously challenge the status quo, Irene also describes herself as someone who constantly rebuilds herself in a “journey of continuous discovery and self reflection.” 

Claire Jedrek

From host to TV presenter to entrepreneur, Claire Jedrek wears many hats and one of them includes being Singapore’s only female race car driver. Her journey in motorsports began in 2007 where she was sent to Brazil for the F1 end of season race, and the rest is history. Since then she’s gone on to cinch podium finishes in 2018 and 2019. 

One might say opposites attract but it’s not necessarily the case for Claire whose husband is also Singaporean race car driver, Yuey Tan, and together they started The Karting Arena, Singapore’s first full-fledged electric karting destination. Her passion for sports has been evident from a young age, when she was competing as the only female in inline skating at the Singapore XGames. 

Throughout her time in motorsports Claire describes many valuable lessons learnt but the biggest being “letting go of your ego to achieve results”. With the pressures that come with racing you might think she prefers the quiet pace of life off-the-track but the do-it-all woman thrives off pressure and in true sportsman fashion believes not in trying to win because one is losing, but because you are the best and hardest working. Despite the pandemic putting her race car career on hold, Claire continues to keep her competitive sporting spirit alive in triathlons and cycling competitions.

Preeti Gupta

Since 2016 Preeti Gupta has been Corporate Affairs Director for BMW Group Asia. With more than 20 years of experience her work has led her to the US, India, and to us here in Singapore. Apart from being Corporate Affairs Director, Preeti is also the Sustainability Lead at BMW Group Asia, leading the charge in BMW’s commitment to sustainability within the region.

Her lengthy career has certainly led to a vast array of experiences and that’s exactly how she feels. “It’s not about the money, but the journey and experiences you have,” she notes when asked about the most important piece of advice she’s been given. 

And it’s exactly those experiences that have led to the passion Preeti brings to her work. Her role as Director of Corporate Affairs and Sustainability Lead at BMW Group Asia has given her the opportunity to work with a wide variety of people, and it’s what excites her most about the work she does, she considers. With leaders like Preeti at BMW Group Asia bringing the pride and joy they do to the work, it’s no wonder BMW has also climbed to the top, becoming the second top luxury car brand in Singapore amidst uncertainties of the pandemic.

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Kimberley Ng

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