Economy

VW's new CEO to push internal change, as well as electric cars

VW's new CEO to push internal change, as well as electric cars

Diess said that he will work to increase the efficiency of synergies across the group's companies, highlighting the importance of streamlining decision making processes in order to adapt to the fast-changing vehicle industry.

Volkswagen's "super-premium" group is to include sports auto brands Porsche, Bentley, Bugatti and very likely, Lamborghini.

Speaking at a news conference at the company's headquarters in Wolfsburg, Germany, Diess said the company's goal would be "to forcefully and with focus press ahead" with the company's Strategy 2025. His term will be judged early on by whether he can scale up his revamp of the VW brand to the entire 12-brand group to prepare for an era of battery-powered self-driving cars.

The company said in a statement Thursday that it would group all its brands and management functions into six broad business areas plus China. In addition to his job, he will directly oversee vehicle information technology as well as group development and research.

Mueller had been tapped as CEO unexpectedly in September 2015 when Martin Winterkorn resigned over the scandal in which the company had rigged carts to cheat on United States emissions tests.

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Herbert Diess has been appointed as the new chairman of Volkswagen Group.

Four sources close to VW Volkswagen's (VW) supervisory board will on Friday replace personnel chief Karlheinz Blessing with Gunnar Kilian, managing director of the carmaker's works council who works directly under labour boss Bernd Osterloh.

Müller led the Volkswagen Group through one of its toughest periods as it faced fire for its emissions cheating scandal. He and Oliver Blume, the 49-year-old head of the Porsche brand, will join the group's management board. The company sold 10.74 million vehicles in the year.

VW's goal is "to safeguard its position among the leaders of the worldwide automotive industry with innovativeness and profitability", said supervisory board chairman Hans Dieter Poetsch.

Mueller followed a course toward a new era of multibillion-dollar investments in electric cars and SUVs, which surprised industry observers who identified VW with its diesel roots and small cars. Francisco Javier Garcia Sanz, Volkswagen's long-time head of purchasing, will leave the company. 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.


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