New bosses at Bentley, Bugatti as Wolfgang Dürheimer steps down

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Wolfgang Dürheimer

Wolfgang Dürheimer

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Volkswagen Group veteran Wolfgang Dürheimer is relinquishing his head roles at Bentley and Bugatti, the automaker confirmed Friday.

Current Audi Sport chief Stephan Winkelmann, who led Lamborghini for a decade prior to joining Audi, has been assigned the top job at Bugatti. He will start the new role on January 1, 2018, bringing with him years of experience in the development of high-end cars, as well as a sense of dealing with the exclusive clientele who buy them.

At Bentley, the head role has been assigned to former Jaguar Land Rover executive Adrian Hallmark. He’s previously worked at Bentley in a sales and marketing role where he helped launch the original Continental GT back in 2003. He will start his new role on February 1, 2018.

The VW Group’s ultra-luxury brands have never been in a better position, thanks in part to the efforts of Dürheimer who has been leading both for the past several years. For example, Bentley sold over 10,000 cars per year for the last four. Not an easy feat when your least expensive car starts above $200k.

Dürheimer started his career in 1986 with BMW. In 1999 he joined Porsche where he was largely responsible for the development and introduction of the original Cayenne. Similarly at Bentley, he oversaw the introduction of the Bentayga in 2016.

“I accept Wolfgang Dürheimer’s wish to retire,” VW Group CEO Matthias Müller said in a statement. “I sincerely thank him for the outstanding work he has done in various positions in the Volkswagen Group over 18 years.”

Note, Dürheimer isn’t leaving just yet. He’ll stay on for the time being as a motorsport advisor for the portfolio of VW Group brands.

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