The Guy Who Designed the Audi R8 Just Quit Volkswagen

The chief of Volkswagen’s design department and the man who designed the Audi R8, Walter de Silva, is leaving the company.

Sources tell Automotive News that de Silva, 64, is leaving because of an overhaul in the automaker’s organizational structure. Nothing was mentioned about the diesel scandal currently gripping the German automaker, but de Silva has not been implicated.

De Silva has been leading the design at VW Group for nine years, and worked at Fiat and Alfa Romeo before joining Volkswagen. He is credited with designing Audi’s now signature single-frame grille.

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Volkswagen is in the middle of reorganizing budgets and company structures because of its costly diesel emissions scandal, and it has been reported that the company is slashing its design department’s budget by 100-million euro.

A replacement for de Silva hasn’t been named yet.

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