Johan de Nysschen, President of Cadillac (General Motors (GM) luxury brand), is leaving the company after four years. His replacement? Steve Carlisle, who recently had a stint as managing director of GM’s Canadian division. Travis Hester will be replacing Carlisle, who was acting VP of Global Product Programs. The old car senior management switcheroo will begin effective immediately, with both men transitioning into their roles right away.
Jalopnik recently revealed that just before GM, de Nysschen was a president at Infiniti for about two years, prior to that role, he led Audi’s American division from 2004 to 2012, overseeing the modern renaissance when it came to sales.
De Nysschen had a pivotal undertaking at GM when he first stepped into the role, which was to take their luxury brand and transform it into a worldwide powerhouse to be reckoned with when it came the auto manufacturing sector; however, his GM career had more fumbles than successes. He moved the brand’s headquarters to New York City, which ruffled many feathers in Detroit and Michigan areas who felt they had lost the crown jewel of vehicle luxury in the United States. Not to mention the ‘too much talk, not enough action’ when it came to the re-build the Cadillac brand, a move that never spoke up when it came to sales.
De Nysschen’s focused a lot on Cadillac’s sedans, which touted high-end performance; however, lagged when it came Asian and European competition when it came to interior and features. Perhaps the biggest blunder was that the brand missed the point on SUVs and crossovers.
Still, he did lead some forward-thinking initiatives like semi-autonomous driving in the Super Cruise and car-sharing services.
More interestingly than de Nysschen leaving was the decision on who would replace him. He was originally an ‘outsider’ when he entered the fold; however, Carlisle is a replacement that was chosen within GM. Perhaps this will make all the difference for the Cadillac brand moving forward.