Volkswagen America CEO Steps Down Amid Continuing Emissions Scandal +VIDEO
HERDON, VA - March 9, 2016: Volkswagen Group of America has announced the departure of Michael Horn, president and CEO, Volkswagen Group of America. Through mutual agreement with Volkswagen AG, Horn will be leaving to pursue other opportunities effective immediately. On an interim basis, Hinrich J. Woebcken, who was recently announced as the new Head of the North American Region and Chairman of Volkswagen Group of America, will assume the role of president and CEO of Volkswagen Group of America.
Horn's decision to leave VW is seen by many in the automotive media as a sign that he was unhappy over being made the apologist and scapegoat over the diesel emissions scandal. Horn made numerous public apologies, including an appearance before Congress, and in at the most recent Los Angeles Auto Show this past November, as seen in the video below:
In annoucing the news, Volkswagen thanked Horn for his contributions to the company during his tenure in the United States. “I want personally to say ‘thank you’ to Michael Horn for the great work he has done for the brand and with the dealers in the United States,” said Herbert Diess, CEO of Volkswagen brand. “During his time in the U.S., Michael Horn built up a strong relationship with our national dealer body and showed exemplary leadership during difficult times for the brand,” he added.
Michael Horn (54) assumed the role as president and CEO of Volkswagen Group of America in January 2014 and has over twenty five years of experience with the Volkswagen Group. Prior to his current role, Horn served as the Global Head of After Sales at Volkswagen AG (VW). Horn joined Volkswagen in 1990 and has held many roles of increasing responsibility within the brand over his tenure, including Head of Volkswagen sales North West Europe, Head of sales and marketing luxury class vehicles, and Head of sales for Europe.