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Volkswagen board chairman Piech resigns following clash over CEO Winterkorn

  • FILE - In this May 22, 2014 file photo Chairman of the board of Volkswagen AG Ferdinand Piech and his wife Ursula Piech, member of the board, attend a meeting of Audi in Ingolstadt, Germany. Piech and his wife will step back from their posts as Volkswagen announced on Saturday, April 25, 2015. (Armin Weigel/dpa via AP, File)

    FILE - In this May 22, 2014 file photo Chairman of the board of Volkswagen AG Ferdinand Piech and his wife Ursula Piech, member of the board, attend a meeting of Audi in Ingolstadt, Germany. Piech and his wife will step back from their posts as Volkswagen announced on Saturday, April 25, 2015. (Armin Weigel/dpa via AP, File)  (The Associated Press)

  • FILE - In this Sept. 2013 file photo Chairman of the board of Volkswagen AG Ferdinand Piech visits the International car show IAA in Frankfurt, Germany. Piech and his wife Ursula Piech, a member of the board will step back from their posts as Volkswagen announced on Saturday, April 25, 2015. (Boris Roessler/dpa via AP, File)

    FILE - In this Sept. 2013 file photo Chairman of the board of Volkswagen AG Ferdinand Piech visits the International car show IAA in Frankfurt, Germany. Piech and his wife Ursula Piech, a member of the board will step back from their posts as Volkswagen announced on Saturday, April 25, 2015. (Boris Roessler/dpa via AP, File)  (The Associated Press)

  • FILE - In this April 25, 2013 file photo Chairman of the board of Volkswagen AG Ferdinand Piech and his wife Ursula Piech, member of the board, arrive for a meeting of Volkswagen AG in Hannover, northern Germany. Piech and his wife will step back from their posts as Volkswagen announced on Saturday, April 25, 2015. (Julian Stratenschulte/dpa via AP, File)

    FILE - In this April 25, 2013 file photo Chairman of the board of Volkswagen AG Ferdinand Piech and his wife Ursula Piech, member of the board, arrive for a meeting of Volkswagen AG in Hannover, northern Germany. Piech and his wife will step back from their posts as Volkswagen announced on Saturday, April 25, 2015. (Julian Stratenschulte/dpa via AP, File)  (The Associated Press)

Volkswagen says board chairman Ferdinand Piech has resigned.

The announcement Saturday follows a rare public clash between Piech and other board members over the leadership of Europe's biggest automaker.

Piech had said in an interview that he was distancing himself from CEO Martin Winterkorn — only to find opposition from other board members who said he had not agreed that stance with them.

The Volkswagen AG statement said that the board's steering committee had met and decided that "the necessary mutual trust necessary for successful cooperation does not exist."

The statement said that deputy board chairman Berthold Huber would serve as interim chairman.