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Nissan Australia chief heads to Cadillac

Change of scenery: Former Nissan Australia chief Bill Peffer has taken a senior sales and service role at Cadillac.

Hunt for Nissan Australia chief continues as Peffer jumps to General Motors in US

7 Oct 2013

BILL Peffer, the former head of Nissan Australia, will take on a senior sales role at US-based rival General Motors.

Mr Peffer, who has headed up the Australian arm of Nissan since he took over from fellow American Dan Thompson in April last year, will return to the US to join GM as Cadillac’s vice-president of sales and service.

Mr Peffer announced late last month that he would be leaving Australia. In the meantime, the managing director of Nissan Financial Services Australia, Peter Jones, has been acting as managing director of Nissan Australia until a replacement is found.

As GoAuto has reported, Mr Peffer had worked for Nissan since 2006, and prior to moving to Australia was director of marketing communications and media at Nissan North America.

In a statement released last week, GM highlighted Mr Peffer’s increasing responsibility in sales, marketing, retail operations and dealer relations during his time at Nissan, as well as the 13 years he spent at Ford in key sales and operational roles working with US dealers.

Mr Peffer will report to Cadillac’s global senior vice-president, Bob Ferguson.

“Bill has a tremendous passion for the automotive industry and a proven track record in achieving outstanding results,” Mr Ferguson said.

“The addition of Bill to our team will help continue Cadillac’s product-driven growth and extend our tradition for delivering great sales and service experiences.”

Mr Peffer heads up the role vacated by Chase Hawkins, who, according to overseas reports, was dismissed from the company for an undisclosed policy violation.

Mr Peffer’s time in the top spot at Nissan Australia has seen the car-maker re-enter Australian motorsport, launching a V8-engined racecar based on the yet-to-go-on-sale Altima mid-size sedan, with mixed results.

He introduced a sweeping price cut to the Nissan Leaf electric vehicle to help boost sales of the vehicle, knocking $15,000 off its sticker price in two separate hits to ignite buyer interest in battery-powered technology.

Mr Peffer also called for government incentives to help boost sales of the Leaf in Australia.

Nissan Australia corporate communications supervisor Chris Jordan said the company was still “a long way off” naming Mr Peffer’s replacement.

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