Volkswagen's Herbert Diess to head volume brand division

Jeannie Matthews
April 14, 2018

Despite the high costs in reputation and fines, the company under Mueller's two-year stewardship achieved record sales of 10.74 million vehicles in 2017 and made 11.6 billion euros ($14.3 billion) in profit.

Senior works council members a year ago had their salaries cut and bonuses suspended after public prosecutors investigated alleged overpayments at the carmaker, a move that labour leaders are blaming on Blessing, one source said.

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.

VW's goal is "to safeguard its position among the leaders of the global automotive industry with innovativeness and profitability", said supervisory board chairman Hans Dieter Poetsch. The move to replace Muller is also part of wider business restructure that will see the company and its brands - VW, SEAT, Skoda, Lamborghini, Bugatti, Audi, Bentley and Porsche - split into three pillars: Volume, Premium and Super Premium.

With that announcement, the VW Group has also announced a major restricting of its brands, dividing them up into six new business areas.

The carmaker will prepare its truck and bus division for "capital market readiness" by making it a public limited company as a prelude to a potential listing, confirming a Reuters report from last month.

Wolfsburg: The new chief of German auto giant Volkswagen was Friday set to outline his plans for steering the company out of the cloud of the "dieselgate" scandal and into a future of electric cars and "sustainable mobility".

Mr Mueller, a former boss at Porsche, took over as VW CEO unexpectedly in September 2015 after Martin Winterkorn resigned over the scandal.

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VW also announced that works council executive Gunnar Kilian would replace Karlheinz Blessing as human resources chief.

Volkswagen has supplanted its CEO with Herbert Diess, who assumes on liability for the whole organization in the wake of managing the VW mark.

Analysts cheered Mr Diess' appointment.

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".

Diess came to Volkswagen in 2015 as head of the core nameplate from competitor BMW, where he was head of vehicle development.

"Diess is a man of activity, he is the most conceivable decision at VW to lead the gathering into the following period of its change", said Nord LB examiner Frank Schwope.

Oliver Blume, chairman of Porsche's board of management.

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