Volkswagen former CEO, Martin Winterkorn, resigned from his position as supervisory board chairman of Audi as the emission scandal spreads.
Martin Winterkorn has resigned as chairman with immediate effect, said a spokesman for Audi. He stepped down as CEO of Volkswagen in September, and Porsche SE, its biggest shareholder, said last month that he’ll depart as head of that company as well. Winterkorn drew many criticisms as he didn’t immediately set aside after the first disclosures in the emission scandal occurred. The consequences for Audi were not favourable, as Volkswagen’s premium division was surpassed this year as the world’s second-largest maker of luxury cars by Mercedes-Benz, with BMW still on top. Among the 11 million VW vehicles worldwide affected by the cheating scheme are 2,4 million Audi cars. Thereby, the upscale brand had to cope with the recalls flow.
Over the 11 million cars fitted with that bypass software, VW last week admitted that 800,000 cars largely in Europe might have wrong emissions labels. It however, rejected US Environmental Protection Agency allegations that its cheating on diesel-emissions tests included a Porsche model and other high-end vehicles. The additional investigation centers on the Porsche Cayenne and VW Touareg models and as well as larger sedans and the Q5 SUV from Audi, according to the EPA.
VW’s new CEO, Matthias Mueller, has proceeded with a plan Winterkorn drafted to decentralize management, giving more responsibility to brands and regional heads. The efforts have been complicated by the widening cheating scandal as the financial fallout from fixing the cars as well as fines from regulators and lawsuits in the US and Europe are difficult to predict.