Chrysler Names Bigland to Head Ram After Diaz’s Defection

Chrysler Group LLC, the U.S. automaker majority owned by Fiat SpA, moved Reid Bigland from chief executive officer of the Dodge brand to the Ram truck business, replacing Fred Diaz, who left to join Nissan Motor Co.

Bigland, who started with Chrysler in 2006, retains his roles as head of U.S. sales and CEO of Chrysler Canada. Tim Kuniskis, a 21-year Chrysler employee and former leader of the Fiat brand in North America, will succeed Bigland as Dodge brand chief, the Auburn Hills, Michigan-based company said in a statement.

The moves come as Chrysler tries to maintain its streak of 36 consecutive monthly U.S. sales gains, the longest stretch in company records that date back to 1985, Chrysler surprised analysts last year when it was the only major U.S. automaker to gain share in its home market.

Jason Stoicevich, a 10-year Chrysler veteran, will take over as head of Fiat for North America and continue to run the company’s California office. Bruno Cattori was named head of Chrysler’s operations in Mexico, another post held by Diaz, who spent 24 years at Chrysler.

Diaz begins May 1 as vice president of sales and marketing for the Nissan brand in the U.S., the Yokohama, Japan-based company said last week.

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