Markus Duesmann takes charge of Car.Software organisation at the Volkswagen Group

Jul 15, 2020   People

The central development of a software platform for the Volkswagen Group is picking up speed. As part of his Group-wide responsibility for research and development, the CEO of Audi, Markus Duesmann, has also taken charge of software.

With its own operating system for all Volkswagen Group models, an automotive data cloud and a new electronics architecture, the cross-brand Car.Software organisation set itself a tight schedule for the coming years in early July. Its new CEO is to be Dirk Hilgenberg, most recently Senior Vice President Manufacturing Engineering at the BMW Group. The organizational focus of the Car.Software organization is to be at the IN Campus high-tech hub in Ingolstadt.


“We are now starting the biggest revolution in the automotive industry. In a few years, a car’s operating system and its connectivity with a highly secure data cloud will make all the difference. This is why the strong positioning of the Car.Software organisation as a cross-brand unit for software development at the Volkswagen Group is a key step into the future,” said Markus Duesmann.


“Christian Senger has made a decisive contribution to establishing the Volkswagen Group’s strategic mission as a software-driven mobility company. Under his leadership, a powerful software unit has been created that can now enter the operating phase following its successful development. At the same time, the Group’s technological expertise has been significantly strengthened through technology partnerships, acquisitions and the recruitment of software specialists. I would like to thank Christian Senger for his pioneering work. With the upcoming handover to Dirk Hilgenberg, we will gain a CEO for the Car.Software organisation who has extensive international experience in the integration of software products and technologies. In close cooperation with him, I will push this topic forward vigorously and at high speed,” Duesmann added.


The full range of functions of the VW.OS operating system, for which the Car.Software organisation is responsible, will be used for the first time in a lighthouse model from Audi that is to be developed in record time at “Artemis” – a new agile unit which, in close cooperation with the Car.Software organisation, will facilitate the enormous acceleration of development processes.


Markus Duesmann continued: “The close cooperation with all brands and teams will be decisive for the success of the Car.Software organisation. With my team at Audi, we are assuming a special responsibility as a premium brand. Because for many of our customers, premium is already defined today primarily through digital technologies that are perfectly tailored to their users. Our aim is for all brands in the Volkswagen Group to benefit from this pioneering role.”


With the transition to the agile working mode on July 1, many specialists from the Group brands and companies were recruited to join the Car.Software organisation. During the current transfer phase, more than 75% of the experts approached have so far decided to work at the new software unit. This personnel expansion will continue. By the end of the year, approximately 5,000 specialists could already be working together under the umbrella of the Car.Software organisation.


As part of the personnel expansion in the Car.Software organisation, the Digital Car & Services department of the Volkswagen Passenger Cars brand is likely to be reintegrated into the core brand, as all the persons currently employed there will transfer to the Car.Software organisation or, at their own request, strengthen other departments in the company.


The focus of the Car.Software organisation is on developing common software for all brands and markets at the Group. This is primarily about the VW.OS automotive operating system and the connectivity with the Volkswagen automotive cloud. In addition, the Car.Software organisation will consolidate the technological platform solutions for data-driven business models and innovations at the Group. Investments of more than €7 billion ($7.98 billion) are planned for these tasks by 2025.


The Car.Software organisation will bring together international expertise. It has its organisational base in Ingolstadt and, with its subsidiaries, has other sites in Germany including in Berlin, Stuttgart, Wolfsburg and, in the future, Munich. In addition, the Car.Software organisation has locations in Europe, as well as in China, the United States, Israel and India.


For Christian Senger, until now Volkswagen Brand Board of Management Member for Digital Car & Services and CEO of the Car.Software organisation, new highly responsible tasks within the Volkswagen Group are being examined. Senger has successfully shaped the organisational development of the Car.Software organisation and has made significant progress with important partnerships and acquisitions.

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