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Infiniti names new product strategy head

Infiniti named industry veteran Francois Bancon as its product strategy head.

Bancon, 62, will be based at Infiniti's headquarters in Hong Kong and will take up the role April 1.

Currently Bancon leads advanced product planning for Nissan Motor Corp., a position he has held since 2005. He played a key role in the launch of the Nissan Leaf EV.

Bancon began his career at Renault in 1978 where he held a series of product-related executive roles until he joined Nissan in 1999.

"Product is at the core of our growth strategy," Johan de Nysschen, president of Infiniti Motor Co., said in a statement. "Francois' product experience, his passion, and in particular his in-depth knowledge of future product trends, will be key assets as we continue to craft our future portfolio."

Bancon took a key role in the launch of the Leaf EV at Nissan.

Infiniti plans to increase its vehicle portfolio by 60 percent and more than double its powertrain portfolio over the next five years as it aims for a 10 percent share of the global luxury car market.

Infiniti launched the Q50 sports sedan in Europe in December and will sell the model in the United States in July. The brand will launch the Q30 compact hatchback in 2015.

Infiniti President Johan de Nysschen said in a statement Bancon's in-depth knowledge of future product trends will be a key asset "as we continue to craft our future portfolio."

You can reach Bruce Gain at bgain@crain.com

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