For a while, Capito was known as the McLaren Racing CEO, which is what he did after leaving the flying Polo racers. However, after team boss Ron Dennis was ousted last year he too left.
The corporate change came after Ulrich Riestenpatt gt. Richter, who led the performance and accessory divisions since 2009, was named plant manager at the Osnabrück factory in Lower Saxony. The former Karmann facility doesn't make that much these days, but Richter also holds a position as a speaker.
Capito's nomination couldn't have come at a better time, as Volkswagen is getting ready to launch its first performance SUV, the Tiguan R. A long career in racing makes the 58-year-old the perfect fit for VW's R shop.
He is an engineering graduate and first worked for the Volkswagen Group in the Porsche racing department from 1989. Between 1996 and 2001, Capito managing the Sauber Formula 1 racing team.
However, I mostly remember him as the head of Ford's SVT and Performance Vehicles. He oversaw the development of the SVT Raptor, the Focus RS, Fiesta ST and made the Shelby GT500 go 200 miles per hour.
Three WRC victories are good, but we wish Capito had been put in charge of VW's performance cars much sooner. The return of rallying was accompanied by a Polo R production car, which could have been a lot cooler. And a man who worked on Ford's mighty RS would have made a much more engaging Golf R.