By on August 18, 2014


FCA is shuffling the management deck, assigning two experienced executives to new roles within the company.

Reid Bigland, formerly the head of the Ram Brand, will now become Alfa Romeo’s top executive for the NAFTA region. Bigland, who once oversaw the Dodge brand, currently is also responsible for Chrysler Canada and is on the company’s Board of Directors. Bigland has been mentioned as a potential successor to CEO Sergio Marchionne, and the Alfa appointment will be a major test of his management abilities, given the uphill climb that the brand will face in establishing a solid foothold in North America, and meeting Marchionne’s lofty sales goals.

Taking Bigland’s place at Ram is Bob Hegbloom, a Ram veteran with wide ranging experience both at the truck brand and with Chrysler’s other truck products. Hegbloom will assume control of one of FCA’s growth engines, but will also be responsible for ensuring that the truck brand doesn’t fall behind technologically, in the wake of developments like Ford’s upcoming aluminum F-150, and the new V8 diesel Nissan Titan being developed by former Ram boss Fred Diaz.

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17 Comments on “Management Shuffle At FCA Sends Bigland To Head Up Alfa...”

  • avatar

    This bodes well for Alfa. This man seems to have the “midas touch”, everything he touches turns to sales gold.

  • avatar

    Hummmmm, sure hope he doesn’t graft a RAM fascia on Alfa or thinking that a very angry one is enough to turn Alfa around. Leave Alfa styling alone, but improve the cars, please.

    • 0 avatar
      el scotto

      Marcelo, what does Alfa have in the Brazilian market? Back in college I dated a woman who had an Alfa Spyder and I almost bought a 164 (or whatever was their last US offering. Also, nary a peep from the Alfistis about all this. Semi-upscale, not-German, and available in other colors than silver, black, or white? Alfa may have a chance.

  • avatar

    Is this a promotion? From heading one of the biggest and most successful units of FCA, he is moving to running just the regional distribution for one brand — and without any product to speak of for the next two years.

    If Alfa NA needs Bigland (am assuming here that he can quickly adapt to a radically different scenario), they could have just given it to him as an additional responsibility, not take away the complete RAM brand from him. Unless he was overburdened to start with …

    Bigland now has:
    – Chrysler US sales
    – Alfa NA sales (when there will be some)
    – Chrysler Canada (I assume both sales and manufacturing)

  • avatar

    Maybe he knows something is coming and is positioning himself to reap the rewards. Maybe he knows it is a challenge and if succesful his chances for CEO-ship rise exponentially. Maybe someone is sending him under the bus. Time will telll.

    • 0 avatar

      Can’t edit. só I’ll just say the above comment was meant as a response to th009.

      • 0 avatar

        So I expected. And it’ll be interesting to see which of these scenarios plays out in the future.

        • 0 avatar

          If he is seen as a heir to the throne then this will be his trial by fire.

          What makes all of this more amazing is the fact that he is only 49 years old.

          •2014 – current, President and CEO, Alfa Romeo Brand, NAFTA Region
          •2014 – current, Board of Directors, Chrysler Group LLC
          •2013 – President and CEO, Ram Truck Brand
          •2011 – current, Head of U.S. Sales Chrysler Group LLC
          •2011 – current, Member of Fiat S.p.A. Group Executive Council (GEC)
          •2011 – President and CEO, Dodge Brand, Chrysler Group LLC
          •2006 – current, Chairman, President and CEO Chrysler Canada Inc.
          •2005 – President, Freightliner Custom Chassis Corporation
          •2002 – General Manager Dealer Operations, Freightliner LLC
          •2001 – Director Vocational Sales, Freightliner LLC
          •1999 – Director U.S. Sales, Western Star Trucks
          •1997 – Director Human Resources, Western Star Trucks
          •1988 – Various management positions, Canadian Airlines International

  • avatar

    He’s a very good choice, a proven performer. The Alfa Romeo project is an important part of achieving FCA’s goals. Sergio has picked someone who has shown he can deliver.

    • 0 avatar

      But if he’s one of the top top guys at FCA, why not give him total ownership of the Alfa Romeo brand? Better yet, spin off Alfa into a separate subsidiary and make him the CEO, with financial visibility?

      • 0 avatar

        Harald Wester is top dog at Alfa Romeo at the moment. I don’t think it would be wise to change horses at this stage of project. If Bigland can pull this off, he surely would be one of the prime candidates to replace Sergio. Although there really doesn’t appear to be anyone that can replace Sergio.

  • avatar

    Bigland has struck me as the type of guy that will go far in the automotive industry.
    He seems very confident.

  • avatar

    Considering how long it is taking GM to revive Cadillac, I think Marchionne greatly overestimates Alfa Romeo’s potential.

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