News of former Ram divsion head Fred Diaz defecting to Nissan has sparked a hiring shuffle over at Chrysler. Reuters is reporting that former Dodge chief Reid Bigland will be moving over to head up Ram, while Tim Kuniskis will move from Fiat to replace Bigland at Dodge. Jason Stoicevich takes over from Kuniskis at Fiat.
Diaz’s departure from Ram as well as his post of Chrysler’s Mexican operations was a shock to many, but it also indicates how serious Nissan is at making a run at full-size truck supremacy, something that Toyota has failed to do with the Tundra. Under Diaz, the Ram 1500 went from an also-ran to a seriously competitive, if not class leading truck. A few years go, Nissan and Chrysler were in the midst of trying to jointly develop a full-size truck, but the bailout and Chrysler’s eventual takeover by Fiat ended up scuttling those plans. Now it seems that Nissan has decided to just poach the brains behind Ram, rather than the technology itself.