May 9, 2021

Gp Delivers

The excellent automotive artisans

Dacia’s new design boss is low-cost vehicles specialist

Renault veteran David Durand will be interim head of design at Dacia, replacing Alejandro Mesonero-Romanos, who is leaving the company after less than a year in the position.

Mesonero had been tapped by Renault CEO Luca de Meo last July to lead design at Dacia, Renault’s low-cost brand. He had worked under de Meo at Seat, Volkswagen Group’s Spanish brand.

Durand has been head of design at Renault Group’s Global Access program, where he was responsible a range of low-cost vehicles developed for emerging and developing countries under both the Dacia and Renault brands. Last autumn Dacia designers under Durand introduced a new generation of the best-selling Sandero and Logan small cars.

His appointment was first reported by Auto & Design magazine, which also reported that Mesonero-Romanos would be joining another automaker in July. Automobile News Europe sister publication Automobilwoche reported Tuesday that Mesonero-Romanos was leaving Renault.

Renault confirmed the changes in an email to Automotive News Europe.

De Meo is combining Dacia and Renault’s Russian brand Lada into a separate business unit, where they will share development, platforms and engines. In January, Dacia showed the Bigster concept, a compact SUV that will share architecture with a new version of the Lada Niva. 

Durand is joining a Renault Group design team made up of Gilles Vidal at Renault, Anthony Villain at Alpine and Patrick Lecharpy at the new mobility brand Mobilize. He will report to Laurens van den Acker, executive vice president corporate design at Renault Group.