Toyota has promoted veteran engineer Gerald Killmann to oversee R&D and purchasing operations in Europe, the first time a non-Japanese executive has held the role.
Killmann, 56, takes over the position on Jan. 1 from Kiyohito Morimoto, who returns to Japan to take charge of R&D operations for the automaker globally, Toyota said in a statement.
Killmann will have a new role as senior vice president in the region, adding purchasing to his reponsibilities.
His current position as vice president for R&D goes to Ahmet Karaman, who moves up from his position of director of R&D at Toyota Europe.
Austria-born Killmann joined Toyota in 1991 as an engine engineer and rose to become director of powertrain for Toyota Europe in 2009. He moved to vehicle development in 2012 and was promoted to vice president of R&D in 2019.
In other management changes, Yoshihiro Nakata has been promoted to become deputy CEO of Toyota Europe, taking over from Nobuhiko Murakami who is leaving after three years in the role. Nakata moves from the position of CEO of Toyota Asia Pacific.
Leon van der Merwe, currently vice president of supply chain, will expand his role to include production control.
Meanwhile, Luis Lopes is promoted to vice president of IT and Digital with the responsibility to transform the automaker "into a leading digital company in Europe," Toyota said in the statement.
Lopes will also take on the role of vice president of connected technologies. Lopes is currently head of technology and development at Toyota Connected Europe.
Akihiko Shibata, the current IT and Digital vice president, becomes executive advisor for IT and Digital.