Nissan design overlord Shiro Nakamura to retire | CAR Magazine

Nissan design overlord Shiro Nakamura to retire

Published: 14 March 2017 Updated: 14 March 2017

► Shiro Nakamura to step down
► Replaced by Infiniti chief Albaisa
► Ex-BMW Habib takes over at Infiniti

The influential creative head of Nissan’s design studios worldwide, Shiro Nakamura, is to retire, sparking a game of musical chairs at the Japanese car giant.

Nakamura-san has had a long run as senior vice president of design and chief creative officer at Nissan, one of the most visually intriguing manufacturers. He was appointed in 2006.

Click here for an archive interview with Shiro Nakamura.

Nissan design: what will they do next?

This is a company with a long history of flip-flopping between Captain Sensible designs (last Nissan Micra, current Pulsar) and some wild rides (think GT-R and Juke crossover).

Shiro Nakamura: one of the modern design greats

Along with a string of radical concept cars, Nakamura (above) steered Nissan through interesting times – highlights included the launch of the Leaf, the world’s first mainstream bespoke electric car, and the seminal influence of the Qashqai, still being copied by most volume car makers.

Who takes over from Nakamura?

Stepping up into the role of senior vice president of global design is Alfonso Albaisa (below), currently the head of Infiniti design at head office in Japan, which runs the satellite studios in China, US and London’s Paddington.

That role at Nissan’s upmarket division is filled from 1 July 2017 by Karim Habib, former head of BMW Design.

Yes, the roundabout job fair of the car design world has swung wide open… expect further repercussions down the line.

Read Nissan reviews by CAR magazine

Alfonso Albaisa: the new head of Nissan design globally

By Tim Pollard

Group digital editorial director, car news magnet, crafter of words