Porsche’s R&D head Wolfgang Hatz resigns image

Porsche’s research and development chief has stepped down from his position, with Michael Steiner being appointed as his replacement.

Many Volkswagen heads have been put on hold following the Dieselgate scandal, and the man responsible for Porsche’s research and development department has been one of them. Wolfgang Hatz has been suspended since September and was involved in the investigation, though enquiries have shown no evidence of his involvement in the cheating scheme so far. Nevertheless, the company announced that he was stepping down from the helm by mutual agreement and on his own request, a position Hatz held since February 2011. Porsche’s supervisory board appointed Michael Steiner as the successor at a meeting this week, for Steiner to take over the research and development division with immediate effect. “I look back fondly on my time at Porsche AG and am very happy that Michael Steiner is taking over as my successor,” the former R&D boss said.

As Hatz held leading positions at the Development Center in Weissach for 14 years, he has played some major roles in the development process of some key models, such as the 918 Spyder and 911 GT3 RS. He was also the man responsible for Porsche’s recent successes in motorsport, while he also played a very significant part in the Mission E concept car, presented last year at the Frankfurt auto show, the brand’s first all-electric sports car in its history that it will go into production at the end of the decade.