Nissan's premium division Infiniti is expected to announce a new acting global chief for the brand, the company said, after its current head, Christian Meunier, left to lead the Jeep unit of Fiat Chrysler Automobiles. Nissan's chief quality officer Christian Vandenhende will oversee Infiniti's global operations effective immediately, until a new brand chief is named, Infiniti said in the statement on Tuesday. Meunier, 51, was named Infinit's global chief in early January after its previous boss Roland Krueger left the Hong Kong-based brand. Meunier will take over as global president for SUV-focused Jeep effective immediately, Fiat Chrysler said in a separate statement. Fiat Chrysler CEO Mike Manley had been running Jeep until he was elevated to the top job in July after the death of Sergio Marchionne.
Meunier has international experience from his years with Ford, Land Rover, Nissan and Infiniti, which may prove valuable as Jeep attempts to expand overseas with a lineup of new products including the Gladiator pickup, a Wrangler plug-in hybrid, and the revived Wagoneer and Grand Wagoneer nameplates. He's worked mostly in sales and marketing roles, including as senior vice president of sales, marketing and operations for Nissan North America; chairman of Nissan Canada; and his recent role heading up Infiniti. An Infiniti spokesman said Meunier's resignation was not related to Nissan's internal investigation into its former leader Carlos Ghosn.