Albaisa replaces Satoru Tai, who will return to Japan.
In his new role, the 42-year-old Cuban-American will head a team of more than 50 international designers, modelers and support staff. He will report directly to Shiro Nakamura, president of NDE and chief creative officer and senior vice president of Nissan Motor Co., Ltd.
"I expect Alfonso to be a great stimulus to Nissan Design Europe creations with his multicultural background, as well as the knowledge he has obtained through his experience working in North America and Japan," said Nakamura.
Albaisa is currently based at Nissan's design center in Atsugi, Japan where he is product chief designer for a next-generation compact car.
Albaisa started his career at Nissan Design America (NDA) in 1988 and was appointed director of the North American design studio in 2005. During his tenure as director, he oversaw all NDA design activities.
Albaisa graduated from Pratt Institute in New York with a B.A. degree in industrial design. He is married with three daughters and is an avid sailor.
NDE, the only vehicle design studio in London, opened in January 2003 and is responsible for designing the next generation of Nissan cars for Europe and other regions. Nissan's new compact crossover Qashqai, which just went on sale in Europe, was designed at NDE. NDE is also involved in global design projects and plays a strategically important role in Nissan's creative network comprising six design studios worldwide.
In Europe, Nissan employs approximately 12,000 people in its design, research and development, manufacturing, logistics, and sales and marketing operations. The company sold 539,773 vehicles in Europe in 2006.
Source: Nissan Europe