Vw and Peugeot Name New Chiefs

By: Tom Bailey


Volkswagen AG and PSA Peugeot Citroen, two of the largest automakers in Europe, named new chief executives to lead them fight the automakers combat. Critics in the industry are saying that an ideal leader can help the automakers find ways to patch things up and eventually take over the scene.

Toyota Motor Corp. and Honda Motor Corp. are considered threats in the industry. They surge and conquer a healthy slice of automotive market. The share gets bigger and better moreover; it is high time for other automakers to aim high and make their plan a reality.

Volkswagen named Martin Winterkorn, formerly the head of the Audi luxury car unit, as the new head of VW's most profitable division. Winterkorn is set to replace Bernd Pischetsrieder, who will be stepping down on Dec. 31.

"When Pischetsrieder's contract came up for renewal in May, there was a feeling that there were a lot of camps, including the works council backed by Piech, that were trying to undermine him," said Mark Fulthorpe, an analyst at CSM Worldwide in Byfleet, England.

Consequently, Peugeot named Christian Streiff, previously the head of Airbus SAS, to succeed the about to retire head, Jean-Martin Folz.

The selection and succession of the new chiefs is anchored on the auto industry's tight competition. The Big 3 automakers of Japan namely Toyota, Honda and Nissan, are launching new diesel vehicles to amass a bigger slice of the automotive market. As a fact, diesel models account for 50 percent of the car sales in Europe.

Toyota, as what the auto reports are saying, is enjoying a prominent standing in the industry. On the other hand, as well as need considerable modifications to achieve what Toyota is enjoying these days.

VW and Peugeot are cutting a total of 30,000 jobs to limit production expenses and drop excess capacity. Critics added that this crucial phase in the life of the mentioned automakers must not compromise the quality of their products. and Peugeot are undergoing rigorous test and enhancements to bring about state-of-the-art vehicles.

"The auto world is highly unstable right now,'' said David Cole, chairman of the Center for Automotive Research in Ann Arbor, Michigan. "It's changing its basic business model, so naturally you would expect to see changes in the head offices as well."

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