Volkswagen names new boss to steer sweeping overhaul

Herbert Diess- Volkswagen

Herbert Diess- Volkswagen

Herbert Diess - the Austrian 59-year-old head of the VW Group's flagship Volkswagen brand - was appointed late Thursday to take over from Matthias Mueller as CEO of the world's largest automaker by sales.

Apart from this, Oliver Blume, Porsche CEO will be joined to the group Board of Management.

Diess, a former BMW AG executive, has had the hard task of negotiating restructuring and cost-cutting with German worker representatives since becoming head of the Volkswagen brand in 2015.

The incoming group boss also said that the company's labor council, which represents the interest of the company's workers, was "fully committed" to the structural and operational changes.

"The group has fundamentally realigned and repositioned itself for it 2025 strategy".

"Volkswagen is thus systematically continuing to transform its business and establishing even more efficient group management in a phase of highly dynamic change in the company and the entire automotive industry".

Diess came to VW from an executive position with BMW, and the Associated Press reports his man role since becoming head of the VW brand in 2015 has been negotiating with German worker representatives. Luxury group Audi will be placed in a separate premium division and high-end brands Porsche, Bentley, Bugatti and Lamborghini in a super-premium group.


Diess described the "most important task" ahead for himself and the German corporate titan as "pushing forward our evolution into a profitable, world-leading provider of sustainable mobility".

Volkswagen's new CEO said Friday that the automaker must "significantly step up the pace" as it pushes into electric and self-driving vehicle technologies and shakes up its culture in the wake of a scandal over diesel emissions. Six others have been indicted and have been advised to stay out of the U.S.

Longtime CEO Winterkorn quit days after the firm admitted to installing software in 11 million diesel vehicles worldwide created to cheat regulatory emissions tests in a scandal that became known as "dieselgate".

The VW cars with 2-liter diesels would meet emissions standards tests in a laboratory or testing station, but in normal operation, they emit nitrogen oxides at up to 40 times the standard, according to the EPA.

As of February, VW had spent more than $7.4 billion in buying back about 350,000 vehicles.

In other boardroom changes, Gunnar Kilian has been made head of human resources and organisation, replacing Karlheinz Blessing, who has left the board by mutual agreement.

The automaker's board member for procurement Francisco Javier Garcia Sanz will quit his post, the sources further added.

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