Porsche flies to the aid of Volkswagen. After the assignment of a single CEO, Oliver Blume, the two brands will share from January 1, 2023 the same Style Director. Designer Michael Mauer, who has been designing Porsche 911s since 2004, takes over as head of Volkswagen’s design department after Klaus Zyciora has resigned for “pursue his career outside the group”.
The German car designer had held the position for only 3 years. But he spent the vast majority of his career at Volkswagen, particularly in interior design. He recently focused on the new electric range, from the ID3 to the future ID6, via the recent ID4, ID5 and ID Buzz (read our test of the new electric Volkswagen Combi).
Michael Mauer, a year younger than Klaus Zyciora (61), initially trained at Mercedes-Benz before being poached at General Motors in 2000 to work on Saabs. He would end up at Porsche in 2004, where his contribution led to the release of the new Cayenne, Macan, Panamera, 911 and 991 Spyder.
Can we imagine a rapprochement in the styles of the two brands? At this time, the Volkswagen Group has not commented on the styling development. But one thing is certain, the new electric range has been launched and it is already time to imagine the future of the brand, which we will discover in more than 5 years.
Increasingly frequent double hats
The announcement comes in a broader reshuffle at Volkswagen, while a replacement will also take place at the quality center of the industrial group. Frank Welsch passes the baton to Michael Neumayer, who also works at Audi for the same function. At Volkswagen, dual shifts seem to be the new normal. What suppose that the group seeks to refocus.
In a speech to shareholders this Friday, the CEO of Porsche and Volkswagen Oliver Blume once again returned to his double role. He was once again trying to guarantee his interest in being able to manage the two positions, which “to complement each other”he said. “A question I am often asked is how do I manage these two roles […] after four months, I can say it: it works well. Should there be any conflicts of interest, we have clear rules to manage them”he said.
On the stock market, the strategy is different. As a reminder, at the end of September, Porsche dissociated itself from the Volkswagen group to list itself on the Frankfurt Stock Exchange completely independently, with its own shares. A way to seek new capital and take the path of Tesla. Sales at Porsche, with its very premium models and its electric shift, offer significant margins – the success of the first exchanges confirmed the interest of investors.