“Software competence is the only way forward”
He is one of the most important individuals within the Volkswagen Group – that’s what our CEO Herbert Diess says about Dirk Hilgenberg, CEO of the Car.Software organization. The transformation from a classic car manufacturer to a digital company is the Group’s biggest challenge and therefore also a huge task for Hilgenberg. With his team, he is building software capabilities and developing a dedicated operating system for vehicles across all Group brands. “Everyone in the Group is convinced that this is the right way – the only way forward,” says Diess.
Crucial to the success: the insourcing of software skills – Volkswagen is in the process of learning software and getting increasingly better. “We are coming out of a situation where we developed about ten percent of the software ourselves and have set ourselves the goal of developing about 60 percent ourselves,” says Diess.
In the conversation from the “Diess talks” series, the CEOs explain where the Car.Software organization, established in 2020, stands and how it is tackling its major tasks: from attracting additional IT experts from Silicon Valley, to collaborating with partners and developing automated driving, which will be visible for the first time through the Artemis project. “This year is clearly the year we become fully operational,” Hilgenberg says. He is optimistic that the challenges ahead can be overcome: “We’re clearing the small and larger stones out of the way and going full throttle.”
Hilgenberg and Diess also make it clear that the new software competencies will open up completely new business areas for the Volkswagen Group and that customers will always have a cutting-edge vehicle in front of them thanks to updates. The software will make our cars even better.
All three parts of “Diess talks” with Dirk Hilgenberg are available here: