General Motors Corp. shifts longtime marketing leader Jim Taylor from general manager of the Cadillac division to CEO of its Hummer unit, a move intended to speed the pace of the struggling SUV brand’s divestiture.

“By creating a new and more comprehensive leadership position for Hummer with Jim Taylor as the top executive, we are bolstering the strategic review process and the brand,” says Mark LaNeve, vice president-sales, services and marketing at GM North America, in a statement.

GM also says in the statement the decision “marks a progression in the ongoing strategic review process and establishes the lead management structure for Hummer going forward.”

GM announced in June it would pursue a buyer for the brand, which became a lightning rod for environmentalists with its gas-guzzling H2 flagship model, after fuel prices spiked and consumer tastes shifted from trucks to more fuel-efficient passenger cars and cross/utility vehicles.

GM also said it would consider keeping and repositioning the brand, but with Hummer sales through the first nine months down 47.4%, according to Ward’s data, a divestiture has become the most likely scenario.

Effective immediately, the appointment tasks the 52-year-old Taylor with responsibility for the future strategy and current business of Hummer worldwide, GM says.

Martin Walsh, current general manager of Hummer, will share Taylor’s new duties through the brand’s transition period and receive a future assignment at a later date.

Taylor will report to Mark McNabb, vice president, Cadillac/Premium Channel in North America for GM. McNabb will assume leadership at Cadillac.

Taylor took over at Cadillac in 2004 after playing a key role in the brand’s resurgence. As the global vehicle line executive for Cadillac, Taylor helped bring to market key products, such as the CTS sports sedan. He joined GM in 1980, holding a number of business and marketing leadership roles at various brands worldwide.