Recently-appointed Volkswagen Group CEO Oliver Blume is overhauling the upper management of the German automaker with new people put in charge of quality management and design.

    As part of the boardroom shuffle, Michael Mauer, Porsche’s head of design, will take over the entire automaker’s design department from January 1, 2023, while also keeping his role at the luxury sports car maker.

    This isn’t the first time Mauer has been in this position, he was the group’s head of design between 2015 and 2020. Mauer replaces Klaus Zyciora who had replaced him in 2020.

    He has been Porsche’s head of design since 2004, and as such has overseen the development of all of today’s range, including the 718, 911, Macan, Cayenne, and Taycan.

    Zyciora has been with Volkswagen since 1989, rising to become the brand’s head of exterior design in 2002, and its overall design chief in 2007.

    During his time at the firm he oversaw the design of the Golf Mk VI, Mk VII and Mk VIII, as well as all of the ID electric vehicles launched to date. He is leaving the automaker to “to pursue tasks outside the Group”.

    Today’s other change will see Michael Neumayer become the group’s head of quality management from the beginning of 2023. He will perform this new role in addition to his current one as Audi’s quality chief.

    Neumayer replaces Frank Welsch who had been the automaker’s head of quality since the beginning of February 2021.

    Today’s appointments are the latest changes in management as the automaker tries to steady itself after diving head first into the EV era.

    The biggest upheaval came at the beginning of September when Blume was appointed CEO of the Volkswagen Group after his predecessor Herbert Diess agreed to step down three years early.

    Since then he has reshaped the automaker’s board of management, placing people from the Volkswagen brand in charge of procurement and production, while Audi people are in control of quality and sales, and Porsche folk hold the reins over design and development.

    In a prepared statement Blume said “managing these key functions via the brands will allow us to intensify our customer focus” on the “excellent quality and iconic design [which] have always been USPs of the Volkswagen Group and its brands”.

    Derek Fung

    Derek Fung would love to tell you about his multiple degrees, but he's too busy writing up some news right now. In his spare time Derek loves chasing automotive rabbits down the hole. Based in New York, New York, Derek loves to travel and is very much a window not an aisle person.

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