Rival automakers salivating at the thought of snapping up a castoff from Volkswagen’s brand portfolio will have to sit and wait.
Amid grim fourth-quarter financial data and ongoing expenses linked to the diesel emissions scandal, the company is standing by its assets, but admits they might have to jettison some if unexpected expenses crop up. (Read More…)
It just posted its largest loss ever and is up to its eyebrows in scandal-related expenses, so what’s an automaker to do when the hands come out asking for more?
That’s the situation in Wolfsburg, Germany, where the scandal-rocked Volkswagen and its workers’ labor union find themselves engaged in an uncomfortable dance, according to Automotive News Europe.
The union, IG Metall, says the automaker’s diesel emissions scandal is no excuse for holding back raises to its 120,000 staff members, and Volkswagen says, “What? Sorry, can’t hear you — we’re driving into a tunnel…call back later.” (Read More…)
Will Volkswagen TDI owners who opt for a buyback be soured on the brand, or can they be lured into a new model?
It’s a big question for dealers, who could stand to benefit from the dealership traffic they’ll see when Volkswagen’s buyback program gets up and running later this year. (Read More…)
Update: I made a decimal flub. The math is corrected. Thanks to commenter ChemEng for pointing it out. We’ll post a new piece on Monday.
There’s no denying it: Volkswagen cheated. It confessed to the crime of emitting up to 40 times over the legal limit allowed for NOx. We learned yesterday (and the day before, to some degree), that Volkswagen will fix the vehicles that can be fixed, if owners so choose.
But what happens to all those diesel cars, which are perfectly good aside from emitting more NOx than they should, if owners decide to cut and run? And what happens to all those vehicles that can’t be fixed? Volkswagen has vowed to buy them back from customers — to which I ask, what then?
There are few options Volkswagen can employ to unload the massive windfall of cars coming its way, and none of them are particularly environmentally friendly.
Note: In light of today’s news regarding an agreement between Volkswagen and U.S. regulators, we believe it’s pertinent to rerun this piece considering Volkswagen still plans on fixing some of the affected 2.0-liter TDI vehicles. —MS
In all reality, Volkswagen probably won’t pay $37,500 for each car that cheated its way through U.S. emissions standards, but the German automaker will probably pay thousands for each car to fit a device that would clean up their acts.
The presumed fix would come by retrofitting a Selective Catalytic Reduction (Adblue or urea) system although that wouldn’t be the only fix necessary. Researchers discovered that the Passat TDI that they tested, fitted with the SCR system, was 5 to 20 times over the NO limit — less than the 10 to 40 times by the lean NO filter cars, but still illegal.
The long list of items needed to fit models of the Volkswagen Golf, Jetta, Beetle and Audi A3 doesn’t include the engineering needed to retrofit the cars and the costs to crash test the models after the significant modifications. That’ll add hundreds of millions to the bottom line.
Dirty Volkswagen diesels equipped with illicit “defeat devices” could soon be flying off driveways and into oblivion.
Sources briefed on the matter told Reuters (via Automotive News) that the automaker will offer to buy back up to half a million 2.0-liter TDI models in the U.S. that emit illegal levels of smog-causing emissions.
They expect that Volkswagen will make the offer tomorrow before a federal judge. The company’s deadline for a U.S. fix is tomorrow, and a failure to act will result in a trial the automaker desperately wants to avoid. (Read More…)
On the eve of a key U.S. deadline for a diesel emissions fix, Volkswagen has reportedly agreed to pay all American owners of afflicted TDI models $5,000 each.
The deal, reported by Germany’s Die Welt newspaper, would allow the automaker to avoid going to trial this summer, according to Automotive News.
Volkswagen was facing an April 21 deadline to outline a comprehensive fix for the 580,000 U.S. diesel models equipped with “defeat devices” designed to sidestep emissions regulations. The deadline was set in March by a U.S. District Court judge. (Read More…)
Will there be a Green Mile edition?
The slow-selling Volkswagen Beetle is living on borrowed time, if a tweet by industry insider Autoline can be believed, but aside from nostalgia, why should the world mourn a vehicle that few buyers want?
In the wake of the disruptive and wildly expensive diesel emissions scandal, Volkswagen needs sales in a big way, and they’re not getting them from the Beetle. Seven months out from the diesel revelations, Volkswagen’s sales are still dropping, and the Beetle’s popularity with buyers has all the power of, well, an original Beetle engine. (Read More…)
More autonomy is coming to North American Volkswagen operations, thanks in part to dealer protests calling for exactly that.
Today, Volkswagen established a new North American Region (NAR) encompassing Canada, the U.S. and Mexico, headed by no-longer-interim Volkswagen Group of America president and CEO Hinrich J. Woebcken (who replaced departing CEO Michael Horn in March). (Read More…)
Volkswagen CEO Matthias Müller is expected to cave to shareholder and labor pressure today and ask that his management board agree to trim their bonuses by 30 percent, insider sources have told Reuters.
Will it satisfy dealers and vehicle owners stuck with depreciated rolling stock? Not. Bloody. Likely.
The request, if it comes to pass, comes after workers unions and the state of Lower Saxony (Volkswagen’s home and its second-largest shareholder) protested the idea of senior management receiving full compensation while the diesel emissions scandal continues to rage.