Infiniti Convinces Woman to Take Three Jobs

Nissan-owned Infiniti has opted to merge marketing, public relations, and social media oversight into a single position. Framed as a promotion for Wendy Orthman, the brand’s current global head of communications, the management shift takes place shortly after former General Manager Global Brand and Marketing Phil York decided he had better things to do in Europe. But it really just seems like the company figured out a way to roll three jobs into a single paycheck.

Effective today, Orthman will be assuming the freshly minted title of general manager of Global Integrated Brand, Marketing and Communications. According to the automaker, the position combines the roles of a chief marketing officer and head of communications while also providing oversight for Infiniti’s social media and public relations.

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Manley Overboard: Mike Manley Moving On From Stellantis

Stellantis boss Mike Manley is moving on.

Manley was the chief of the Americas for the company, but now the 57-year-old is heading to AutoNation, where he will take over for the retiring Mike Jackson.

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Deliverer of Lifelines, Former Mitsubishi CEO Masuko Dies at 71

Osamu Masuko, the longtime Mitsubishi Motors boss who guided his company through turbulent waters, helped craft an alliance with Nissan and partner Renault, only to find his ship back in storm-tossed seas, has died just three weeks after his unexpected departure.

Masuko died on Thursday, aged 71, Japanese media reports. The former chairman announced his resignation on August 7th.

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General Motors CFO Resigns, Lured Away by E-Commerce Boom Opportunity

Dhivya Suryadevara, General Motors’ chief financial officer, is on the way out. After helping the automaker weather its worst storm since the 2008 recession and concurrent bankruptcy, Suryadevara announced her resignation Tuesday, effective August 15th. She’s leaving for a non-automotive position at Stripe, a San Francisco-based financial services and software company.

GM’s first female finance boss, Suryadevara took on the role in 2018, but the pandemic that rocked the auto industry this year also created new opportunities elsewhere.

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Mitsubishi Chairman Osamu Masuko Abruptly Resigns

A longtime presence at the top of Mitsubishi Motors departed his post Friday morning, marking the end of an era for the embattled Japanese automaker. Company Chairman Osamu Masuko, 71, resigned effective immediately today, following a six-year tenure at the top of a company he joined in 1972.

Masuko, who rose to become president of the company in 2005 and CEO in 2014, cited health reasons for his sudden departure.

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BREAKING: Ford CEO Jim Hackett to Retire; Farley Tapped As New Boss

A bombshell just landed from Ford, as the automaker announced the impending retirement of CEO Jim Hackett and his replacement by Chief Operating Officer Jim Farley, effective October 1st.

Ford said Tuesday that Hackett, 65, whose tenure has been the subject of much speculation and criticism as the company navigates wildly turbulent waters, “elected” to retire. He replaced the ousted Mark Fields in 2017. In his place rises Farley, who also joins the company’s board of directors.

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Cross-Channel Job Hunt: Fired by Renault, Former Boss Lands at Jaguar Land Rover

An Indian-owned British automaker is about to land a French boss.

On Tuesday, Jaguar Land Rover parent Tata Motors announced the hiring of Thierry Bolloré, former CEO of Groupe Renault, as the automaker’s new CEO, replacing the retiring Sir Ralf Speth. The new boss arrives on September 10th.

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QOTD: Ready to Go One-on-One?
The setting: a dimly lit bar, which is the best kind of bar, and one that seems to have stepped out of another time. Old, overly varnished wood mingling with red faux leather on the chairs and booths, a stained glass lamp hanging over each corner nook, and a complete absence of daylight or identifiable exit. Are you even above ground? You can’t tell.A din registering somewhere between pleasant background murmur and raucous cacophony ensures reasonable privacy from the introvert population of this half-filled saloon. The drinks adorning tables and bartop are not mango mojitos, but brown liquors. Some with ice, most without. This is a place where long-lasting, healthy relationships are not kindled, but where more than a few businessmen have stopped in for a last drink before jumping off that overpass or going home to clean dad’s rifle. Maybe Deep Throat drank here. Maybe, somewhere out there in the brightly lit streets that may as well be a million miles away, three-piece suits and sideburns are back in vogue, and every car has an ashtray.As you ponder your surroundings, puzzled, disoriented, and more than a little intrigued, a figure moves towards your table.
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Joe's Got a Brand New Bag: Ousted Ford Exec Turns Up at Self-driving Tech Firm

Joe Hinrichs, formerly Ford’s president of automotive (and a leading candidate for CEO in the event that the company’s board grew tired of Jim Hackett), has found a new gig after his ouster from the automaker he worked at for 19 years.

On Monday, Massachusetts-based WaveSense announced Hinrichs as its newest board member, joining a former General Motors chief financial officer, Chuck Stevens III, and a Continental executive in the advisory body.

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Room at the Top? Some Nissan Bigwigs Want to Push COO Up the Ladder, Report Claims

Nissan’s under the gun, and some near the top of the company reportedly like what they see in the company’s chief operating officer, Ashwani Gupta. So much so, that they’re pushing for a change in roles.

They’d like to see the architect of the brand’s four-year turnaround plan, released last month, don the same hat as CEO Makoto Uchida.

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Moving Day: Volkswagen Brand Gets a New Boss

Forget all about that Porsche dude. The current CEO of Volkswagen Group’s sporting car brand will not become the new head of the automaker’s namesake brand. Instead, a supervisory board meeting Monday saw Herbert Diess punted, replaced by the brand’s former chief operating officer.

Come July 1st, Ralf Brandstätter will take the helm, tasked with guiding the brand through troubled water and into an electrified future.

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Report: Monday Meeting Could See Volkswagen's Diess Replaced

A report last week in a German publication stated that Volkswagen Group was looking for someone new to take charge of its namesake brand. The new blood would come in the form of Porsche CEO Oliver Blume, sources said.

We’re now hearing there’s an “extraordinary” supervisory board meeting being held at VW today, and that the result could be current brand chief Herbert Diess being bounced from his role.

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U.S. Nabs Two Men, Including Ex-Green Beret, in Ghosn Escape Caper

Authorities arrested a former U.S. special forces member and his son in Massachusetts Wednesday, accusing them of helping former Renault and Nissan boss Carlos Ghosn escape from Japanese justice. Just after Christmas, Ghosn, under house arrest awaiting trial for financial crimes, turned up in the safe country of Lebanon following a complex and hazy escape plan.

Such a plan was beyond the abilities of Ghosn to pull off on his own, but it seems just such an extraction was Michael Taylor’s specialty. Taylor, 59, a former Green Beret, was arrested along with his 27-year-old son Peter.

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Mitsubishi Slashes Executive Pay, Revises 2019 Forecast

Mitsubishi, the automotive brand TTAC readers can’t get enough of, is going further into money saving mode amid the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.

The automaker announced late last week that it will revisit and revise its 2019 fiscal year financial forecast and rein in its spending, starting with the pay checks it sends to officers and directors.

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Ford Shakes Up Top Ranks After Farley-led 'Deep Dive'

Few C-suites undergo renovations quite as often as Ford’s. The automaker’s executive ranks have again seen a revision, with the biggest promotion going to Kumar Galhotra (pictured above), formerly president of Ford’s North American region and ex-boss of the Lincoln brand — a role he earned considerable kudos for.

Elsewhere in the shakeup, which was ordered by recently minted chief operating officer Jim Farley following a 10-week “deep dive,” are promotions and additions designed, among other things, to sharpen “Ford’s focus on product and launch execution.” Among the new hires? A former Israeli intelligence officer.

It seems last year’s botched Explorer/Aviator roll-out continues to make ripples.

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  • FreedMike Back in the '70s, the one thing keeping consumers from buying more Datsuns was styling - these guys were bringing over some of the ugliest product imaginable. Remember the F10? As hard as I try to blot that rolling aberration from my memory, it comes back. So the name change to Nissan made sense, and happened right as they started bringing over good-looking product (like the Maxima that will be featured in this series). They made a pretty clean break.
  • Flowerplough Liability - Autonomous vehicles must be programmed to make life-ending decisions, and who wants to risk that? Hit the moose or dive into the steep grassy ditch? Ram the sudden pile up that is occurring mere feet in front of the bumper or scan the oncoming lane and swing left? Ram the rogue machine that suddenly swung into my lane, head on, or hop up onto the sidewalk and maybe bump a pedestrian? With no driver involved, Ford/Volkswagen or GM or whomever will bear full responsibility and, in America, be ambulance-chaser sued into bankruptcy and extinction in well under a decade. Or maybe the yuge corporations will get special, good-faith, immunity laws, nation-wide? Yeah, that's the ticket.
  • FreedMike It's not that consumers wouldn't want this tech in theory - I think they would. Honestly, the idea of a car that can take over the truly tedious driving stuff that drives me bonkers - like sitting in traffic - appeals to me. But there's no way I'd put my property and my life in the hands of tech that's clearly not ready for prime time, and neither would the majority of other drivers. If they want this tech to sell, they need to get it right.
  • TitaniumZ Of course they are starting to "sour" on the idea. That's what happens when cars start to drive better than people. Humanpilots mostly suck and make bad decisions.
  • Inside Looking Out Why not buy Bronco and call it Defender? Who will notice?