CHICAGO (Reuters) - President Barack Obama has decided to form a government task force to oversee the restructuring of the struggling U.S. auto industry instead of naming a car czar with sweeping powers, a senior administration official said on Sunday.

Obama is appointing Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner as his designee for overseeing auto bailout loans and as co-head of the new high-level panel along with White House economic adviser Lawrence Summers, the official said.

But Obama, who took office on January 20 and last week won congressional approval of a massive economic stimulus program, has dropped the idea of having a single car czar empowered to run the revamping of the auto industry.