BMW’s production chief Oliver Zipse is to become the next chief executive of the German carmaker after Harald Krueger’s announcement that he was stepping down, the Frankfurter Allgemeine newspaper reported on Friday, citing people within the company as its source.

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BMW declined to comment on whether Zipse would be appointed chief executive, saying this would be formally decided on July 18 when the full supervisory board is due to meet.

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Zipse, 55, is the youngest among three potential successors, who include 59-year-old R&D chief Klaus Froehlich and 57-year-old Chief Financial Officer Nicolas Peter.

BMW has an age limit of 60 for board members.

Zipse has held the post of head of production like other BMW chief executives, including Krueger and BMW’s supervisory board chairman Norbert Reithofer, one of the sources said.

“The CEO candidate will not be a surprise,” one of the sources said.