General Motors Chief Executive Rick Wagoner would have been prepared to resign had he not received public support from the hard-pressed U.S. carmaker's supervisory board, an industry newspaper said.
The board expressed its confidence in Wagoner in a statement last week announcing it had approved the sale of a controlling interest in the group's financing arm, GMAC.
Automotive News quoted an unidentified source familiar with the board's deliberations on Monday as saying Wagoner had asked the board for a vote of confidence and had been prepared to resign had he failed to win their endorsement.
"He felt that if he didn't act now, it would spin out of control, and the momentum would be unstoppable," the paper quoted the source as saying.
Wagoner, 53, has been under mounting pressure given GM's $10.6 billion 2005 loss, disclosure of accounting errors going back years and sliding U.S. market share.
GM officials were not immediately available to comment on the report.
In GM's April 3 statement on the GMAC deal, Presiding Director George Fisher said:
"This transaction, along with the other progress GM has been making on its turnaround plan, is an important milestone. While there is still much work to be done, the GM Board has great confidence in Rick Wagoner, his management team and the plan they are implementing to restore the company to profitability."