London, Sept.23 (ANI): Volkswagen CEO Martin Winterkorn has announced that he will be resigning in the wake of the scandal surrounding the emissions of its diesel cars.
In a statement issued by the company from its headquarters in Wolfsburg, Germany, Winterkorn said he was “shocked by the events of the past few days. Above all, I am stunned that misconduct on such a scale was possible in the Volkswagen Group.”
According to media reports, a successor for Winterkorn will be decided a supervisory board meeting on September 25.
Among the possible candidates for the job are Matthias Muller, Porsche AG chief executive and Rupert Stadler, Audi chairman and chief executive.
The world’s second-largest carmaker has been engulfed by an emissions scandal which has wiped off nearly 26 billion Euros (USD 29 billion) off its market value this week.
Nearly 11 million VW cars have been potentially affected, jobs are in jeopardy and even once-mighty companies can be permanently damaged.
The company is said to have been caught cheating on American air pollution tests.
Volkswagen installed sophisticated software known as “defeat devices” in the electronic control module of diesel vehicles issued between 2008 and 2015.
Winterkorn has become the public face of the scandal, with allegations that he ignored warning signs about the emissions in 2014.
In stepping down on Wednesday, Winterkorn said “not aware of any wrongdoing on my part” but had accepted the “responsibility for the irregularities that have been found in diesel engines and have therefore requested the Supervisory Board to agree on terminating my function as CEO of the Volkswagen Group.” (ANI with inputs)