Nissan names new SVP of R&D

Exec who joined auto maker in '87 will retain corporate role

Nissan has tapped one of its corporate vice presidents to lead the research and development operations of its North American arm.

Kunio Nakaguro will take over as senior VP of R&D on Feb. 1 from Carla Bailo, who is retiring after 25 years at Nissan. Nakaguro also will keep his role as vice president at Nissan Motor Co.’s Research Center and be based at Nissan Technical Center North America in suburban Detroit.

"Carla's talents are among the best in the industry, and she was instrumental in establishing departments and processes that improved the efficiency of Nissan's R&D functions," said Jose Munoz, Nissan EVP and chairman of the company’s North America region. "As we wish Carla the best in her retirement, we welcome Nakaguro-san, who brings R&D experience from several regions, including five years at NTCNA."

Nakaguro joined Nissan in 1987 and has held positions in engineering and product development. From 2004 to 2008, Nakaguro was a director at Nissan Technical Center. He then was named the senior VP in charge of R&D and customer satisfaction at Nissan’s European technical center.