Two of Europe's automotive titans, long used to getting their way in boardroom intrigues, suffered rare defeats in late April that threaten to alter permanently the empires they built.
Neither is likely to take defeat lying down.
Ferdinand Piech, 78, resigned as chairman of Volkswagen's supervisory board on April 25 after he and his wife lost a power struggle with VW CEO Martin Winterkorn. Piech may already be launching a counteroffensive, according to German media reports.
Meanwhile, Renault-Nissan CEO Carlos Ghosn, 61, stands at a crossroads after failing last week to win a vote that would have allowed Renault to opt out of a rule that increases the French government's stake in the carmaker. Ghosn has long sought to give Nissan greater control of the alliance, control that would match its two-thirds of combined global vehicle sales and larger share of profit. Both Renault and Nissan have warned that increased French government control could endanger their 16-year-old alliance.