Reuters has reported that GM chief executive Rick Wagoner is facing a growing number of critics who want him to step aside to help win back investor confidence.

The news agency refers to a website Autoextremist.com, and others, who criticise Wagoner for not moving fast enough to reshape the company after reporting a $10.6bn loss in 2005. Last week's decision to delay filing its 2005 annual report and the disclosure of accounting errors has intensified calls for a change of leadership, said the news agency.

Reuters quotes Peter Morici, a professor at the University of Maryland business school as saying, "When a company run by a CFO is having problems with its books, what does that tell you? You've got a man who is not up to the job."

David Cole, chairman of the Center for Automotive Research in Ann Arbor, Michigan, is however reported to be supportive of Wagoner. He said his approach with the unions is collaborative rather than confrontational, and that it would be a disaster if Wagoner were to go.