Dacia CEO Denis Le Vot has paid tribute to former head of design Miles Nurnberger, who left the company earlier this month after less than a year at the helm.
Although the announcement of Nurnberger’s departure from Dacia gave no details of the circumstances behind the decision, Le Vot told Autocar: “I regret Miles leaving. He was a great guy. He has personal reasons for wanting to leave, and we respect that.”
Nurnberger came from Aston Martin to replace former Seat designer Alejandro Mesonero-Romanos, who himself spent just nine months in the role prior to leaving for Alfa Romeo. Long-time vice president of Dacia design David Durand has now been promoted to run the team.
Le Vot said: “It has been disappointing to lose Alejandro and now Miles so quickly, but the changes are out of our control, and David is an exceptional leader.
“These things happen. If I reflect, I think now is perhaps the best timing. Design work on the next Duster and Bigster is 99% done, changes to our brand imagery is done and we have a few exciting ideas in the pipeline that have been developed or that are being developed.”
Speaking to Autocar in September last year just a few days after taking up the role, British designer Nurnberger explained a big motivation for joining Dacia was that it "wasn’t going to be going somewhere to repeat. It was something that was evolving and moving and had momentum in its trajectory.”
More recently, he suggested that his influence on the styling of future Dacia products would soon become clear, telling Autocar: "We have a proper brand mindset now. That will quite naturally lead us to progress, and to make new design statements."
However, he did acknowledge that it would be "years" before a production car penned by him would arrive in showrooms.
It is not entirely clear why Nurnberger is now leaving Dacia, and nor has the brand given an idea of the extent of his impact at the firm over the past nine months.
Laurens van den Acker, EVP design at the Renault Group, which owns Dacia, said: “I look forward to working with David to meet the mobility challenges of tomorrow. His creativity, experience and sense of innovation are widely recognised, both within our management and in the automotive industry. I would also like to thank Miles for his contribution and work with the teams.”
There has been no suggestion of where Nurnberger might go next. In his 13 years at Aston Martin, he had a hand in the design for the Valkyrie hypercar, DB11 coupé and DBX SUV.