Renault has named a new second in command at the carmaker to replace Patrick Pelata who resigned in April over the mishandling of an industrial espionage case.
Carlos Tavares will take over as Chief Operating Officer. He is currently head of the Americas division of Renault’s partner Nissan. His nomination has been approved by the French government, which holds a 15 percent stake in Renault.
Tavares, who is Portuguese, has worked closely with the government there on setting up infrastructure for electric vehicles.
An engineer by training, Tavares’ great talent lies in zooming out to see the big picture, said Joao Dias, national coordinator of the mobi-e electric vehicle (EV) charging network in Portugal, where Nissan has a groundbreaking EV partnership with the government.
Tavares, 53, was instrumental in getting the negotiations started, meeting national and local government officials in the early days of the project.
Dias was struck by his zeal: “His eyes are lively and shining: he’s very enthusiastic, he transmits a lot of energy to you and he’s a visionary,” he said.
Tavares will be making the move back to Renault after a stint at its alliance partner Nissan. He spent 23 years at the French car maker in engineering and programme management roles before moving to Nissan in 2004.