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Audi names new chairman and R&D boss to bounce back from VW emission scandal

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Audi names new chairman and R&D boss to bounce back from VW emission scandal

Audi names new chairman and R&D boss to bounce back from VW emission scandal
December 04
12:13 2015

Audi has appointed a new chairman and a new development chief as Volkswagen’s flagship luxury division struggles to recover from an emissions scandal. The German carmaker has named Volkswagen Chief Executive Matthias Mueller as the new chairman of its supervisory board.

Mueller will replace Martin Winterkorn, who resigned from the helm of the Audi board in November in the wake of investigations of VW’s emissions scandal, Audi said after a meeting of its supervisory board.

The board also picked Stefan Knirsch, head of engine development to succeed Ulrich Hackenberg, top engineer at Audi and the VW group.

Hackenberg was suspended two months ago together with two other executives closely associated with the development of the VW engine at the centre of the scandal, codenamed EA 189.

“The investigation is making progress,” Audi deputy chairman Berthold Huber said. “That is a necessary and good sign.”

Audi admitted two weeks ago that its 3.0 litre V6 diesel engine was fitted with emissions-control software.

The V6 diesel engine was designed and assembled by Audi at its Neckarsulm factory in Germany, and used in about 85,000 premium models sold by the VW, Audi and Porsche brands from 2009 up to 2016.

The admission from Audi, which contributes about 40% to VW group profit, has raised the pressure on CEO Rupert Stadler, a 25-year VW group veteran who has led the Ingolstadt-based automaker for nine years.

After being questioned by the Audi board yesterday, Stadler will also need to convince VW’s 20-member controlling panel at a meeting on December 9 to discuss the state of investigations.

 

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