Matthias Mueller has been named CEO of Volkswagen AG, effective immediately, the company announced today.
Mueller, 62, has been chairman of Porsche AG since 2010. He’ll continue to serve in that role in the interim until a successor has found.
The change comes in the wake of the Volkswagen emissions scandal, which broke last week.
“My most urgent task is to win back trust for the Volkswagen Group – by leaving no stone unturned and with maximum transparency, as well as drawing the right conclusions from the current situation,” Mueller said in a company-issued release.
“Under my leadership, Volkswagen will do everything it can to develop and implement the most stringent compliance and governance standards in our industry.
“If we manage to achieve that then the Volkswagen Group with its innovative strength, its strong brands and above all its competent and highly motivated team has the opportunity to emerge from this crisis stronger than before.”
Two key members of Volkswagen AG highlighted Mueller’s service to the company.
“Matthias Müller is a person of great strategic, entrepreneurial and social competence,” said Berthold Huber, interim Chairman of the Supervisory Board of Volkswagen AG. “He knows the Group and its brands well and can immediately engage in his new task with full energy. We expressly value his critical and constructive approach.”
Added Bernd Osterloh, Chairman of the Group Works Council, “When it comes to leadership appointments the Volkswagen Group does not need hasty decisions. We know and value Matthias Müller for his determination and decisiveness. He does not work on his own, rather he is a team player. That is what Volkswagen needs now.”
Mueller began his career with Audi AG in Ingolstadt in 1971 as a trained toolmaker, prior to attaining his Master’s degree in Computer Science at the University of Applied Sciences of Munich in 1974, and then rejoined Audi AG in 1978.
Mueller’s career with Audi took him to be head of systems analysis (1984) and head of project management (1995), among other key roles with other brands within the company.
By 2007, Mueller was named head of product management for Volkswagen Group and the VW brand, general representative. He assumed his role as president of the Executive Board of Dr. Ing. h.c. F. Porsche AG, Stuttgart, in 2010.
Mueller was also the Porsche individual quoted when it announced in 2011 that it would be returning to LMP1 at Le Mans, which it ultimately did last year.
“Motorsport was always an essential part of the Porsche brand,” Mueller said at the time. “So for us it was only a matter of time before we returned as a factory to the top league of racing. Porsche’s successes in Le Mans are unrivalled. We want to follow up on this with the 17th outright victory.”
Mueller attended his first U.S. sports car race in Baltimore in 2012, meeting several members of the media on site, and witnessing the Team Falken Tire Porsche 911 GT3 RSR win the GT class of the American Le Mans Series race.