Honda Motor has announced that its president Takanobu Ito will be replaced in June this year by Takahiro Hachigo, currently a managing officer with responsibility for purchasing in China (pictured).

Hachigo took up the managing officer role last April. He will become senior managing officer in April this year, and will become president, CEO and representative director in late June.

Ito, who is also currently chief operating officer and representative director, will remain on the board and assume the post of director and advisor to Honda Motor.

Hachigo joined Honda in 1982, and began his career in its automobile R&D operations, principally as an engineer in chassis design. He went on to assume responsibilities for developing the second generation CR-V in 2001 and was stationed in the US as senior vice president of Honda R&D Americas between 2004 and 2006. Moving through a number of senior roles in Japan and Europe, in 2013 Hachigo’s responsibilities shifted to China, where he took on the role of vice president of Honda Motor (China) Investment, representative of development, purchasing and production (China), Honda Motor, and vice president of Honda Motor Technology (China).

Ito joined Honda in 1978 and also began his career in the company’s automobile R&D operation and, like Hachigo, working primarily as a chassis design engineer. He has led Honda as president, COO and representative director since 2009.

“During the six years of Ito’s leadership, Honda was able to actively evolve its global manufacturing structure, notably the establishment of automobile plants in Mexico, Brazil, Thailand, Indonesia, India and China. Also under Ito’s leadership, Honda succeeded in solidifying its business foundation by enhancing its product development capabilities,” said the company in a statement.