Germany is Starting To Resent That We Got Volkswagen In Trouble (Video)

Aaron Cole
by Aaron Cole

My German begins and ends with “nein” but I don’t need to know much to see what’s going on in this video.

According to the New York Times, sentiment in Germany is starting to build that American regulators are being unfairly harsh with Volkswagen in an effort to bolster domestic manufacturers such as Ford, General Motors and Ram.

The Environmental Protection Agency notified Volkswagen in September that its cars used an illegal “defeat device” to skirt emissions laws. Since then, the automaker has been caught up in an international scandal that has cost the automaker billions and damaged the reputation for Germany’s largest exporter.

Volkswagen CEO Matthias Müller is set to deliver an interim report Thursday on the automaker’s internal investigation. According to AFP, up to 50 employees have come forward to talk about the widespread cheating scandal that the automaker admitted to after the EPA’s notification in September.

According to the New York Times, some in Germany have openly questioned whether the automaker and authorities could thoroughly investigate such a key component of that country’s economy.

“I don’t have confidence it will be a tough investigation,” Caren Lay, a leader of the Left Party, told the New York Times.

Even with the skepticism, some in Germany have envisioned Volkswagen and Germany, and the U.S. and its regulators ducking to their respective corners ahead of a perceived fight.

“There is this general notion that the U.S. is overstating the case in order to damage one of the major competitors of the U.S. carmakers,” Nils Stieglitz, a professor at the Frankfurt School of Finance, told the Gray Lady.

Which probably precipitated the video here, shown on German national TV, and characterizes Volkswagen’s deception as minor compared to “rolling coal” and women with guns and stuff. Which, sure — we’ll give you that.

But it’s hard to argue that regulators in the U.S. were the ones who installed the devices on cars around the world and then forced VW to lie about it for six years. Just a thought.

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  • Wheatridger Wheatridger on Dec 08, 2015

    The Germans make a good point about America's double standards. While we demand diesel cars run cleaner than a baby's breath, when it comes to "light trucks." anything goes. Every safety and emissions standard is relaxed for them, as if they were agricultural implements used in remote areas and limited numbers, not the primary choice for common commuters that they really are. The second point is valid, too. though hard to prove. The health damage of ozone pollution is realm, but hard to quantify. Its easier to name and count those killed or maimed by bad air bags and ignition switches.

    • See 2 previous
    • Drzhivago138 Drzhivago138 on Dec 08, 2015

      @Hummer That, along with other factors, seems to be why my father isn't interested in anything newer than an interim Tier IV machine--right now, we're toying with replacing our two 45-year-old "toy tractors" with a single 20-year-old "large utility" (JD 6000 Series) that can actually run the rake all day without overheating. I do not oppose the use of DEF or other tech to reduce diesel emissions, but I understand the frustration a lot of farmers feel from the increased financial burden that they "have" to pay. So in the interest of not letting tempers flare up unnecessarily, I don't take them to task on it.

  • Jasper2 Jasper2 on Dec 09, 2015

    Is EPA also responsible for debunking Vee Dubbayou's solution to "fix" the problem? Or is the "fix" just another type of pollution?? Ist EPA auch zur Entlarvung Vee Dubbayou Lösung zu "reparieren" das Problem verantwortlich? Oder ist der "Fix" nur eine andere Art von Verschmutzung ??

  • Max So GM will be making TESLAS in the future. YEA They really shouldn’t be taking cues from Elon musk. Tesla is just about to be over.
  • Malcolm It's not that commenters attack Tesla, musk has brought it on the company. The delivery of the first semi was half loaded in 70 degree weather hauling potato chips for frito lay. No company underutilizes their loads like this. Musk shouted at the world "look at us". Freightliners e-cascads has been delivering loads for 6-8 months before Tesla delivered one semi. What commenters are asking "What's the actual usable range when in say Leadville when its blowing snow and -20F outside with a full trailer?
  • Funky D I despise Google for a whole host of reasons. So why on earth would I willing spend a large amount of $ on a car that will force Google spyware on me.The only connectivity to the world I will put up with is through my phone, which at least gives me the option of turning it off or disconnecting it from the car should I choose to.No CarPlay, no sale.
  • William I think it's important to understand the factors that made GM as big as it once was and would like to be today. Let's roll back to 1965, or even before that. GM was the biggest of the Big Three. It's main competition was Ford and Chrysler, as well as it's own 5 brands competing with themselves. The import competition was all but non existent. Volkswagen was the most popular imported cars at the time. So GM had its successful 5 brands, and very little competition compared to today's market. GM was big, huge in fact. It was diversified into many other lines of business, from trains to information data processing (EDS). Again GM was huge. But being huge didn't make it better. There are many examples of GM not building the best cars they could, it's no surprise that they were building cars to maximize their profits, not to be the best built cars on the road, the closest brand to achieve that status was Cadillac. Anyone who owned a Cadillac knew it could have been a much higher level of quality than it was. It had a higher level of engineering and design features compared to it's competition. But as my Godfather used to say "how good is good?" Being as good as your competitors, isn't being as good as you could be. So, today GM does not hold 50% of the automotive market as it once did, and because of a multitude of reasons it never will again. No matter how much it improves it's quality, market value and dealer network, based on competition alone it can't have a 50% market share again. It has only 3 of its original 5 brands, and there are too many strong competitors taking pieces of the market share. So that says it's playing in a different game, therfore there's a whole new normal to use as a baseline than before. GM has to continue downsizing to fit into today's market. It can still be big, but in a different game and scale. The new normal will never be the same scale it once was as compared to the now "worlds" automotive industry. Just like how the US railroad industry had to reinvent its self to meet the changing transportation industry, and IBM has had to reinvent its self to play in the ever changing Information Technology industry it finds it's self in. IBM was once the industry leader, now it has to scale it's self down to remain in the industry it created. GM is in the same place that the railroads, IBM and other big companies like AT&T and Standard Oil have found themselves in. It seems like being the industry leader is always followed by having to reinvent it's self to just remain viable. It's part of the business cycle. GM, it's time you accept your fate, not dead, but not huge either.
  • Tassos The Euro spec Taurus is the US spec Ford FUSION.Very few buyers care to see it here. FOrd has stopped making the Fusion long agoWake us when you have some interesting news to report.