BMW's Markus Duesmann to become Audi CEO in 2020

18 September 2019

BMW’s Markus Duesmann to become Audi CEO in 2020

18 September 2019

BMW board member Markus Duesmann will become Audi’s new CEO, German newspaper the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung (FAZ) has reported.

Quoting ′a person with knowledge of the appointment', the FAZ reports that Duesmann will start as the new head of Audi on 1 April 2020.

Path of least resistance

Duesmann resigned from BMW in July 2018 but the carmaker has insisted on the non-compete clause that does not end until 1 October 2020 – hence the delay in his move to Audi. However, the BMW board is reported to no longer be resisting the move.

Bram Schot, who officially took over the CEO role at the start of 2019, will therefore need to give way to Duesmann earlier than previously expected.

Schot already held the role on an interim basis from the summer of 2018 after former CEO Rupert Stadler became implicated in an investigation into emissions cheating by Audi.

Herbert Diess, head of Audi parent Volkswagen Group, did say at the time that Duesmann would take on the top role at Audi as soon as he could. Diess himself joined VW from BMW in July 2015.

KBA fines

Meanwhile, German newspaper Bild am Sonntag has reported that the KBA, the German motor vehicle authority, has informed Audi that it faces fines for not removing illegal software from its diesel cars.

In three letters addressed to the board, the KBA has told Audi that it has until 26 September ′to prove the removal of the inadmissible shut-off devices'.

This concerns thousands of Euro 6 cars fitted with V6 and V8 diesel engines. The KBA demands a penalty payment of €25,000 in each case and could even shut down the cars if Audi does not meet the deadline.

An Audi spokesman has said that swift progress is being made, commenting that ′Audi has a software update for all affected vehicles, works closely with the authorities and has provided the required emission measurements. So we see no reason for a withdrawal of the type approval.'