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VW Group Chairman Ferdinand Piech Resigns

Motor Trend logo Motor Trend 4/25/2015 Erick Ayapana

The ongoing feud among top brass within Volkswagen Group has led VW Group supervisory board Chairman Ferdinand Piech to submit his unexpected and immediate resignation earlier today, Reuters reports.

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Piech’s resignation follows weeks of tension within the VW Group board. Earlier this month, German outlet Der Spiegel revealed that Piech withdrew his confidence in Volkswagen Group CEO Martin Winterkorn, who was expected to succeed Piech in 2017. Analysts saw the move as a blow to Winterkorn’s chances at having his contract renewed, which is set to expire by the end of next year. Piech (left) and Winterkorn (right).© Provided by MotorTrend Piech (left) and Winterkorn (right).

According to previous reports, Piech and a number of board members voiced concern regarding group’s decline in profitability and the VW brand’s slow growth in key markets like China and the U.S. Piech reportedly said engineers within the company would be a better fit for both his role and CEO of Volkswagen Group. Winterkorn, however, fought to retain his position.

The battle between Piech and Winterkorn allegedly subsided last week when senior supervisory board members took a vote and sided with the CEO. Piech was then forced to agree on a statement supporting Winterkorn. Despite that vote, Piech apparently had no desire to continue a working relationship with Winterkorn, which led to today’s resignation.

Piech, 78, has held a leading role in VW for over two decades. For now, deputy Chairman Berthold Huber will assume Piech’s duties until the board elects a new chairman.

Source: Reuters

Ferdinand Piech© Provided by MotorTrend Ferdinand Piech
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