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Infiniti Americas Chief Michael Bartsch Replaced

Motor Trend logo Motor Trend 2/18/2015 Alex Nishimoto

Vice president of Infiniti Americas Michael Bartsch is leaving his position, the automaker reports. Taking his place will be Nissan western region vice president Randy Parker. The move is the latest in a series of executive shakeups at Nissan and Infiniti.

Bartsch previously led Porsche North America, and was hired in 2013 by former Infiniti CEO Johan de Nysschen, who left for Cadillac last year. Infiniti says Bartsch is leaving the company to "pursue other interests." Parker, his replacement, joined Nissan in 2013, hired by Nissan executive vice president and Chairman of Nissan North America José Muñoz. According to Automotive News, Muñoz has become increasingly involved in Infiniti's American operations since de Nysschen's departure.

Infiniti Americas vice president© Provided by MotorTrend Infiniti Americas vice president

"Randy has been a key contributor to the growth of Nissan in the United States," Muñoz said in a statement. "He has overseen strong growth for the Nissan brand in our western region, and we look forward to the skills that he will bring to Infiniti."

That growth in the western region includes sales increases of 15 percent so far this fiscal year, compared to gains of 11-12 percent nationally. Infiniti's 2014 sales totaled 117,330 units, up 1 percent from the previous year in spite of a reported 6-percent rise in luxury sales across the market. The pressure is on at Infiniti, as Renault-Nissan boss Carlos Ghosn recently set a goal of reaching 10 percent combined Infiniti and Nissan market share in the U.S. by 2017. As of December 2014, market share for both brands stood at 8.4 percent. Part of Infiniti's problem is that it's waiting on new products like the Q30 hatchback due later this year, as well as a production version of the recently unveiled Q60 concept.

Infiniti Americas vice president© Provided by MotorTrend Infiniti Americas vice president

Parker will fill the role of Infiniti Americas vice president immediately, overseeing the U.S., Canada, and Mexico markets. He will report to Infiniti president Roland Krueger, who replaced de Nysschen last year.

Source: Infiniti, Automotive News (Subscription required)

Infiniti Americas vice president© Provided by MotorTrend Infiniti Americas vice president
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