Business / Corporate

Nissan's Infiniti names new design chief as another non-Japanese exec exits

by Norihiko Shirouzu

Reuters

Nissan Motor Co.’s premium brand Infiniti said it has named Taisuke Nakamura as its new design chief, replacing Karim Habib who resigned from the post.

Canadian designer Habib, who spent only about two years in the role, is the latest non-Japanese senior executive to have left Nissan in the wake of the ouster of its powerful Chairman Carlos Ghosn.

Nakamura was tapped internally. He joined in 1993 and is currently program design director for Infiniti and has contributed to the brand’s design since 2018. His appointment is effective Sept. 1, according to an Infiniti statement viewed by Reuters ahead of its release. Nakamura is expected to report to Yokohama-based Nissan’s global design chief, Alfonso Albaisa.

It was not immediately clear why Habib resigned. He started as Infiniti’s global design chief in July 2017, joining Nissan from BMW, for which he was a global design chief.

Aside from Habib, top non-Japanese Nissan executives such as Daniele Schillaci, Jose Munoz and Trevor Mann have left the automaker in the recent past.

Ghosn, who faces charges of fraud and misconduct, is awaiting trial in Japan over charges of financial misconduct. He has denied any wrongdoing, saying he is the victim of a boardroom coup.

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