Traverse City Record-Eagle

Business

April 16, 2013

Chrysler shuffles executives

AUBURN HILLS (AP) — Just a few days after a top executive left Chrysler Group LLC for Nissan Motor Co., Chrysler has shuffled executives to fill the vacancy.

The company said Monday that Reid Bigland, presently CEO of the Dodge brand, will move to the top spot at Chrysler’s Ram brand, which includes the company’s key pickup trucks. Bigland will remain the head of U.S. sales as well as CEO of Chrysler Canada.

He replaces Fred Diaz, a longtime Chrysler executive who left Friday to become head of sales and marketing at the Nissan Division in the U.S.

The move comes at a critical time for Chrysler as pickup truck sales are starting to rebound after four years of lackluster sales. Bigland will be expected to keep the sales momentum going at Chrysler. Ram pickup sales in the U.S. are up 15 percent so far this year.

Chrysler also named Tim Kuniskis, head of the Fiat brand in North America, to replace Bigland as chief of Dodge. Kuniskis will be replaced at Fiat by Jason Stoicevich, who will also stay on as head of Chrysler’s California business center. Bruno Cattori was named CEO of Chrysler de Mexico, a position that also was held by Diaz. Cattori also will keep his current position as director of retail sales and fleet for all Chrysler brands in Mexico.

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