VW to hand unions management board seat in reshuffle

"The Volkswagen group is considering further evolving the leadership structure, which could be connected with changes in the board. a change to the chief executive could be involved", VW said in a statement.

The automaker said in a statement Tuesday that it was in discussions with top executives and members of its supervisory board that may result in changes to personnel. In response to the company's decision to initiate a change in leadership, Mueller had expressed willingness to be a part of the overhaul. German magazine Der Spiegel was first to report that Kilian could replace Blessing who joined VW in January 2016. Predecessor Martin Winterkorn fell victim to the company's scandal over cars rigged to cheat on diesel emissions tests. Other potential CEO candidates include Volkswagen's trucks chief and Daimler veteran Andreas Renschler.

Volkswagen is now embroiled in infighting between with the most prominent stakeholders - including the Porsche and Piech families - and the German state of Lower Saxony and labour leaders, but the news of a potential new head for the company saw share prices rise by 4.5 percent yesterday to just under £150 a share.

Volkswagen Chief Executive Officer Matthias Mueller has won wide praise for steering the carmaker through the near-death experience of cheating on diesel-emissions testing - but that wasn't enough to keep him in the job.

Prior to joining VW, Diess was an executive at BMW.

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Its profit margin climbed to 7.4% of sales in 2017 from 6% in 2015, when the crisis hit.

Mueller has been accused of a weakness in his decision-making at Europe's biggest auto manufacturer, a source close to the supervisory board told dpa. Despite the product reform, Mueller has so far struggle to make Volkswagen a more efficient and focussed company which was planned.

The debate about Volkswagen's future structure comes a month after its largest shareholder, Porsche Automobil Holding, picked three new representatives of the Porsche and Piech families to help oversee Volkswagen.

Volkswagen and the works council declined to comment.

  • Rita Burton