One BMW guy replaces another - as Audi moves into control.
VW’s software coding issues have triggered significant changes in the German automotive group’s structure.
Earlier this week, it was announced that VW’s software boss, Christiaan Senger, was leaving the company. Senger had been responsible for digital vehicle integration, a division which has been plagued with issues since last year.
Amidst a move to create a new portfolio of digital product and services within its vehicles, and established the world’s largest range of battery-powered cars, VW cannot afford more costly software glitches.
Replacing Senger at VW is Dirk Hilgenberg. Like Senger, Hilgenberg has spent most of his career at BMW, before being headhunted by VW. Not a trained engineer, but a physicist, Hilgeberg is a vastly experienced technology systems manager.
He has worked at Rolls-Royce aviation’s engine division and spent many years perfecting production systems and information technology integration, for BMW’s American production assets.
VW will expect Hilgenberg to contain the software coding issue which appears to have considerably escalated over the last year, but his position will no longer be as strong.
As part of VW’s new staffing, the company has also made a profound announcement concerning Audi. The Ingolstadt brand will henceforth be responsible for leading digital vehicle integration technology, across the VW Group.
Audi CEO, Markus Duesmann, is now the controlling VW Group board member for car software and will direct Hilgenberg. This effectively means that Audi is now being recognised as the technology R&D leaders for the VW Group, something which many had suspected, for some time.
Duesmann has promised that 5 000 new IT professionals, coders and engineers will start to work in his division over the next year.