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Feud Between Piech, Winterkorn Spurs VW Controlling Family Meeting

Motor Trend logo Motor Trend 4/15/2015 Alex Nishimoto

The Porsche-Piech family, which has a controlling stake in Volkswagen Group, will meet over the next few days to address the leadership feud between VW Group supervisory board chairman Ferdinand Piech and CEO Martin Winterkorn, Reuters reports. The dispute was sparked by comments Piech made last week.

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Piech will meet his cousin Wolfgang Porsche and other members of the family to discuss the quarrel, which has seemingly divided VW's supervisory board into two camps: those that support VW Group CEO and board of management chairman Martin Winterkorn and those who don't. A formal board meeting is expected to follow the talks. MotorTrend Image© Provided by MotorTrend MotorTrend Image

Last week, Piech stated in an interview that he had "distanced" himself from Winterkorn, revealing a lack of confidence in the CEO and damaging his chances at renewing his contract and eventually succeeding the 77-year-old as chairman of the supervisory board. Reuters says Piech's comments have been criticized by other members of the family, in addition to labor leaders and shareholders who stand behind Winterkorn. Under Winterkorn, VW Group has enjoyed significant growth globally, though the U.S. market continues to slip. However, a new plan to boost sales in America is well underway, with several crossovers in the pipeline including a seven-passenger model due next year. VW Group also recently announced that it plans to cut billions of euros in spending in order to increase profitability.

Though it's uncertain if the bad blood between two of VW Group's top brass can be resolved, the family will meet this week to try and sort things out.

Source: Reuters

Piech (left) and Winterkorn (right).© Provided by MotorTrend Piech (left) and Winterkorn (right).
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