Volkswagen AG announced it has appointed Porsche boss Oliver Blume to replace Herbert Diess as Volkswagen CEO in a surprise shake-up.
The departure of Diess, 63, follows frequent clashes with VW’s labor unions, shareholders and other stakeholders.
Diess has been the architect of Volkswagen’s big move into electric vehicles.
Bloomberg reported that missteps on key projects including delays at VW’s software unit also contributed to the shake-up.
Volkswagen is planning an initial public offering of Porsche.
The firm said Blume, 54, will take over as CEO on September 1, 2022, combining the job with his role at Porsche “and continuing in the latter capacity also after a possible IPO.”
VW group CFO Arno Antlitz will also assume the position of COO and “assist Blume with day-to-day operations.”
VW Supervisory Board chairman Hans Dieter Pötsch said: “During his tenure as Chairman of the Board of Management of the Volkswagen Passenger Cars Brand and as Chairman of the Group Board of Management, Herbert Diess played a key role in advancing the transformation of the company.
“The group and its brands are viable for the future; its innovative capabilities and earning power are strengthened.
“Mr. Diess impressively demonstrated the speed at which and consistency with which he was able to carry out far-reaching transformation processes.
“Not only did he steer the company through extremely turbulent waters, but he also implemented a fundamentally new strategy.”