The head of the Volkswagen works council, Bernd Osterloh, has distanced himself from the planned design of the next Golf model.

In an interview with Handelsblatt, Osterloh said that individuals in focus groups could not easily identify the car as a Volkswagen.

Following the recent change of VW management, the new Golf is currently being overhauled by a new design team, headed by Water de Silva, the newspaper said.

VW group CEO Martin Winterkorn has taken over as head of the Volkswagen brand from Wolfgang Bernhard, who left the company in February. He was previously responsible for the development of new VW brand cars.

Osterloh said the the redesign could result in the new model being more expensive than hoped. One of the major objectives for the next generation was to engineer out some of the high costs of the current model.