MUNICH -- Volkswagen Group has suspended Audi development chief Ulrich Hackenberg, VW brand r&d boss Heinz-Jakob Neusser and Porsche development head Wolfgang Hatz, Reuters reported.
Hackenberg, 65, and Hatz, 56, previously ran units at the heart of the VW diesel emissions scandal.
Hackenberg, a Winterkorn confidante, was responsible for VW brand development from 2007 to 2013, while Hatz ran the group’s engine development from 2007 to 2011.
Neusser has been VW brand's development boss since 2013 and head of VW Group powertrain development since 2012.
All three deny they knew about any illegal activities, media reports in Germany said. One source said Hackenberg was taking legal action against the decision.
Volkswagen and Audi declined to comment, while the suspended executives could not immediately be reached.
VW's supervisory board last Friday agreed to put a number of employees on leave until the details of VW's emissions cheating scandal were cleared up, without providing names.
Reuters contributed to this report