MUNICH -- Volkswagen Group CEO Herbert Diess won backing from the automaker's supervisory board in a move that temporarily defuses a power struggle over his strategy to accelerate the automaker's push toward electric vehicles.
A statement from the supervisory board on Monday said members "unanimously resolved" to give its full support to Diess' strategy, in particular the orientation of the company toward electromobility and digitalization."
"Over the coming years, the executive board will implement this strategy under Herbert Diess' leadership," the board said.
The announcement gives Diess the endorsement from the board that he sought while granting some concessions to labor leaders.
Diess got the board's support for his candidate for chief finance officer and for his wish to separate the automaker's procurement and components divisions.
VW will also cut overhead costs by 5 percent and procurement costs by 7 percent over the next two years, the board said.
Key points from the board's statement were:
- Lamborghini and Ducati will remain part of VW Group. The divestment of the Italian luxury brands had been under discussion to streamline the group's brand portfolio. The statement gave no commitment to Bugatti. Reports have said VW is in talks to sell Bugatti to Croatian performance electric-car specialist Rimac.
- Bentley will be placed under Audi's control. Currently Porsche CEO Oliver Blume has overall responsibility for Bentley. Automobilwoche, a sister publication of Automotive News Europe, first reported the plan in October. Bentley's future lineup will share more technology with Audi, including using the Artemis technology project, which is developing a successor for Audi's A8 flagship sedan, to also develop a full-electric car for Bentley.