By on April 20, 2016

Volkswagen Golf family

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.

Earlier today, we reported that the automaker is preparing to offer the U.S. owners of every maligned diesel vehicle $5,000. It now seems the money will be given to those who agree to a buy back or have their vehicles fixed when a fix becomes available. It was also reported today that Volkswagen is planning to set aside huge sums of cash on top of an existing $7.6 billion fund aimed at dealing with the financial fallout of the scandal.

Those same Reuters sources said that a buyback isn’t the only thing Volkswagen representatives might pitch at the judge. The automaker might offer to fix some diesel models, they said, assuming that the Environmental Protection Agency declares that some of the affected vehicles are capable of being fixed.

A lawyer for Volkswagen first raised the possibility of a buyback program back in January. So, if you’ve got a dirty TDI sitting in the garage that’s rapidly depreciating in value, tomorrow will be a big news day for you.

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85 Comments on “Volkswagen Poised to Offer a Mass Buyback Program...”


  • avatar

    Is it really that serious?

    If no one ever found out they were rolling coal, they’d still go about their lives as if they were “green”.

    • 0 avatar
      SCE to AUX

      What if you discovered every Hellcat only produced 590 HP, while Dodge had proudly claimed 707 HP? Would you really know the difference?

      Yes, you’d say, because it’s been dyno’d. Well, so has the TDI.

      Except that besides consumer fraud, there are serious health implications related to NOx, which can be traced statistically to so many cases of lung disease, heart disease, and death. The aggregate effect is certainly small, but not zero.

      That VW intentionally and systematically pulled this stunt over a prolonged period of time means there must be serious consequences.

      • 0 avatar

        My car is supposed to be capable of 205 mph.

        I’ll probably NEVER FIND OUT.

        But even if I found out I couldn’t go past 199, I wouldn’t really care.

        As for health implications, I’ve already accepted the fact that BILLIONS of organisms died to fuel my cars for just one week.

        TRILLIONS MORE will have to be sacrificed so I can exist on the level I exist.

        Always remember: suffering brings out the flavor.

        Evolution only comes through conflict.

        You really think these astmatics are supposed to live forever?

        • 0 avatar
          ttacgreg

          So we should just give up even trying then?

        • 0 avatar
          FreedMike

          As usual, BTSR, in his unending zeal to be a drama queen, misses the whole point.

          It ain’t about environmentalism. Even the all-f**king HELLCAT has to pass emissions.

          It’s about a car maker who sold people cars with the expectation they’d pass emissions and perform up like they did on the day they bought them. Except…they won’t pass emissions unless they’re de-tuned and will perform like s**t.

          VW knew that but didn’t tell the folks who bought their cars. A better word for this is “ripoff.”

          Apparently this doesn’t concern BTSR because VWs aren’t nearly as cool as a HELLCAT…which they aren’t, of course, but I’d say even people who buy uncool cars shouldn’t get ripped off.

          I’d be willing to bet that if HELLCAT didn’t pass emissions unless it was de-tuned, BTSR would throw a fit that would leave the average preschooler thinking, “damn, son, that’s some good fit-pitching. Respect.”

          • 0 avatar
            Kyree S. Williams

            It’s not even that so much as the fact that our regulators can’t allow automakers to blatantly cheat emissions and other safety standards that have been set. They have to enforce some kind of consequence, if only to keep this from happening again. Imagine if it was illegal to steal (and it is), but no one ever got arrested for doing so.

            Same thing. VW has to pay *something*. And I’m sure that something will hurt.

      • 0 avatar
        Superdessucke

        The average Toy Factory in China probably puts out more pollution in an hour than if you took every single TDI in the world, put bricks on the gas pedals, and ran them all at WOT for a year.

        I agree this is a serious issue but I think there are issues more serious than this one.

      • 0 avatar
        28-Cars-Later

        The excess NOx amounts released are statistically insignificant which is why no one picked up on it for years and years. None of this has anything to do with NOx, its all about defiance of rules set by eco statists and the economic consequences therein.

        • 0 avatar
          Pch101

          If you murder one person, then you’ve killed only 0.000000013514% of the world’s population.

          No biggie, right?

        • 0 avatar
          Robert.Walter

          Nobody picked up on it for years because the system is built on trust, an enforcement system based on trusting companies to act in good fait to meet regulations coupled with the risk of big fines for violating that trust, and an automaker that willfully conspired to violate that trust by gaming the system.

          Weaknesses in the system are no justification or excuse for flagrantly violating it.

    • 0 avatar
      RobertRyan

      No, it is not that serious, but this getting more into the area of politics, than a “problem”

      • 0 avatar
        Big Al From 'Murica

        Shove it Rex Ryan…yep…SHOVE IT!!!!!

        • 0 avatar
          RobertRyan

          Outside NA, or more specifically the US, the rest of the world has moved on.

          • 0 avatar
            Big Al From 'Murica

            Well we in the US have the luxury of not giving a rat’s kiester about the rest of the world. But down under you’ll probably be able to buy these cars as you are the dumping ground for dirty, unsafe trucks so why not some dirty cars.

            And oh yeah…SHOVE IT!

          • 0 avatar
            RobertRyan

            @Big Al,
            Seeing you are living in one of the most polluted countries on the planet and with an attitude like that, will only get a lot worse

          • 0 avatar
            Big Al From 'Murica

            Been all over the world. Your usual anti-American Bull Sheite aren’t fooling anybody. Aaaand Shove It!

          • 0 avatar
            1998redwagon

            not true. europe is also looking at all diesels for cheating. its one of the reasons their urban air pollution has not dissapated (sp?) despite years of ‘improved’ diesel engines. europe is watching vw in ‘merica very closely.

            btw i own a ’13 passat tdi. i expected it to beat epa mileage estimates and it does but i would not have purchased it if i knew it did not meet epa pollution standards.

          • 0 avatar
            RobertRyan

            It is true, they are producing new Diesels all the time. Jaguar has a new straight six diesel that will go to 400hp! Audi part of of VW, has new diesels coming

    • 0 avatar
      RobertRyan

      @Big Al,
      I have actually been all over the world your pile of steaming BS, is just that
      “Almost half of the U.S. population lives in areas where air pollution levels are often dangerously high for them to breathe, according to a report released Wednesday by the American Lung Association.

      The group’s annual “State of the Air” report finds 47 percent of Americans live in counties with frequently unhealthy levels of either ozone or particulate pollution. That’s up from 42 percent in last year’s report.

      The five communities with the worst air pollution were all in California. Los Angeles-Long Beach topped the list with the highest ozone levels, while Fresno-Madera was found to have the most particle pollution.

      Four cities ranked the cleanest in all three categories: Salinas, Calif., Cape Coral, Fla., Bangor, Maine and Bismarck, N.D.

      Although the air is much cleaner overall than it was a decade ago, the report found the nation’s air quality still worsened from 2010 to 2012.”

      • 0 avatar
        Big Al From 'Murica

        Oh my God how often are you going to keep posting that debunked crap. Nobody cares what you are shoveling. Shove it

      • 0 avatar
        highdesertcat

        {Although the air is much cleaner overall than it was a decade ago, the report found the nation’s air quality still worsened from 2010 to 2012.”}

        I am 100% certain I added to that pollution that drifted eastward, by burning my fireplaces every night, spraying used motor oil to burn my tumbleweeds and trash, and firing my AC-generators up every Sunday at noon for 6 hours of black-smoke billowing exhaust plumes.

        RR, if you think I’m kidding, I’m not. I’m dead serious. Some places like Albuquerque, NM, have instituted no-burn nights for fireplaces if no wind is in the forecast.

        • 0 avatar
          FreedMike

          Denver has that too, HDC. We have a serious inversion layer here in the winter because of the mountains. It caused the infamous “brown cloud” in years past, but it’s far better today than it was 20 years ago when I lived here, despite the fact that there are probably a million more people living her now.

          Definite progress!

  • avatar
    healthy skeptic

    How is VW still going to be solvent after all this?

    • 0 avatar
      runs_on_h8raide

      Easy. Crank out more “limited edition 911s, Caymans and Boxters” by de-contenting current offerings…badging them with exclusive lettering, numbered plaques, retro homage editions, etc, etc and charging more for them…much more! They will bleed the Porsche cash cow for as much as it can. Heck, you might see a Porsche 3 row SUV, pick-up and Mini-van soon!!!

    • 0 avatar
      RobertRyan

      Pretty easy, they will offer fixes, that will eventually satisfy the EPA

      • 0 avatar
        highdesertcat

        That’s the way I see it too.

        This, too, shall pass.

        Other automakers have done worse things, paid a fine, developed a work-around fix, and the American auto market marched on unabated.

        • 0 avatar
          RobertRyan

          HDC,
          This has been forgotten outside NA. New model releases by Audi/ Porsche are more in the news. The Diesel fixation is a US aberration, that is hard to understand outside NA or inside parts of NA

          • 0 avatar
            highdesertcat

            VW is a niche player in the US. VW’s got its diesel-fan boys in the US but they are a minority of a minority in a 17M+ SAAR market.

            That’s why I cannot understand the amount of digital ink and writer’s cramp ttac expends on it.

          • 0 avatar
            RobertRyan

            HDC,
            Yes it does not make sense. As a political football yes

          • 0 avatar
            highdesertcat

            Maybe VW is big in Canada. ttac is a Canadian site.

            Each time I visited my sister in Vancouver, BC, I always saw more American brands and Toyondasans than anything else.

          • 0 avatar
            stuki

            In the US, a significant percentage of those that bought the VW diesels, did so specifically because they wanted to ‘save the planet”, by being “sensibly European” and “emitting less CO2.” So it hits them harder than the numbers themselves would indicate. Doesn’t help that the same people tend to rank amongst the most gullible, as far as faith in government agencies, credentialism, certifications and the rest of the progressive canon goes.

            If it was instead the Hellcat who turned out to pollute more than initially thought, noone who bought one would likely care one lick. And some may even have felt more vindicated by it..

          • 0 avatar
            DenverMike

            @Robert Ryan – It’s damn sure a cliff hanger around here though.

            I doubt anyone here cares if this ongoing saga grabs headlines around the world, or auto blogs set outside NA.

            It’s a US vs VW ‘thing’ anyway, with the rest of the world waiting or not waiting for an outcome here to set precedent. Certainly no other country takes vehicle emissions as serious. Emissions are taken lightly in Australia, if not a complete joke, along with crash standards. Enjoy that.

    • 0 avatar
      Nick_515

      Here’s one diabolical plan. Give people $5k for their troubles, and the value equivalent of what’s left in their TDI’s towards the purchase of ANOTHER VW. Boom boom booom!

    • 0 avatar
      RobertRyan

      @Big Al ,
      So have I , and the US is the most polluted place, I have stayed in., have not visited China yet. Your we are cleaner than the rest of the world is total crap.

      • 0 avatar
        stuki

        City size for City size, the US is no worse than many other places. Much of Europe has much worse problems with particulates than equivalent size US cities. Athens is plain nasty, even compared to much bigger LA.

        Croc Dundee’s Place 500 miles outside of Alice, is no doubt pretty “clean”, but so are spots in the outer Aleutians. And the neighborhood immediately surrounding that American flag planted on the moon, less polluted than those again.

      • 0 avatar
        Big Al From 'Murica

        So I’m guessing you must not get to the less developed world. Baghdad and Kabul spring to mind as some pretty dirty places. Also India and as you mentioned, China. Southern Italy was full of perpetually burning dumpsters for example. But you just keep shoveling your Sheite and SHOVE IT!!!

  • avatar
    badreligion702

    Depending on the year, $5k seems a little low, unless that is an average. I would be pissed if I had a 2014 TDI and was told I was only going to get $5k for it.

    • 0 avatar
      highdesertcat

      I agree. It’s awfully low IMO. But the owners always have the option to continue to drive their current VW product until the wheels fall off, and then reward VW-corp by buying another brand to replace it.

      There is no ban on driving the VWs already on the road.

    • 0 avatar
      stryker1

      My understanding, from reading other articles on this, is that the $5k is a sweetener for people who agree to a buyback (presumably at whatever the pre-dumpster-fire market value of your TDI was).

  • avatar
    SCE to AUX

    They’d better be offering more the $5000 to owners of 2015 Golf TDIs in exchange for their cars. This can’t be a correct interpretation.

  • avatar
    notwhoithink

    Steph Williams once again completely misses the point. I beginning to suspect that english is not their first language with the glaring mistakes in comprehension. The $5000 is not the amount that they are paying to buy back the cars.

    From the article that you linked (but didn’t read):

    “VW will pay cash compensation to owners who either sell their vehicles back or get them fixed, a source briefed on the matter said. Owners selling back their vehicles will get an additional cash payment on top of receiving the estimated value of the vehicles from before the emissions scandal became public in September 2015.”

  • avatar
    brettc

    Seems like at the moment the current news articles are suggesting a potential September 2015 FMV buyback + $5000.

    I’ll wait for full, official details tomorrow but right now it’s not overly appealing to me based on what I’m reading.

  • avatar
    Jeff S

    It is possible that the owners will be willing to take 5k just to get rid of their diesel VWs. If it were me I might take it and then never buy another VW product.

  • avatar

    Just the other night, I drove a friend’s Jetta TDI. Man was that fun! My intellect and my gut are totally at odds over potential outcomes of this fiasco.

    • 0 avatar
      Luke42

      I loved driving my Jetta TDI.

      Owning it was the problem. It ate $100 bills like cookie monster eats cookies.

      That’s why I’m still talking about it, actually. If it had been completely terrible, it wouldn’t be worth talking about.

  • avatar
    Storz

    Que it’s happening gif!

  • avatar
    storkdoc63

    This doesn’t include my Audi Q7. I wonder what they’ll do for us?

  • avatar
    TrailerTrash

    This whole thing is confusing and stories like this that repeat stories from somewhere else don’t help.

    Hell…i am not sure anybody even knows what cars are polluting and by how much!
    Polluting was originally reported between 20 and 40 percent over regulated limits, or what the company stated.
    Well…which is it and how will this effect the consumers?

    There are no specifics on the buyback amounts,legal court agreements or even what cars are going to be worth what amount in the buyback….who will what in return for what.
    So many things still need to be worked out and agreed to by all involved.

    Nobody even knows IF you can keep your car and do nothing! Is this an option???

    It must be workable at least in draft forms cause the shares shot up.
    Its not often shares of a company shoot high after agreeing to give our a billion or so and still not have the legalities within each country finalised.

  • avatar
    MRF 95 T-Bird

    For the life of me I just can’t believe that they are unable to retrofit the offending vehicles with the Urea tank, revised catalyst and fuel tank. Then just reflash the computer. There are roughly 300k VW 2.0 TDI’s here in the states as well as the previous generation A3. This would cost less that the $5k per vehicle offered and it would most likely meet the EPA standard. I’m sure the owners would be pleased and probably be repeat VW group customers. It’s been almost a year and they could have completed the recall by now. Heck even GM was faster with the Cobalt deadly ignition switch.

    • 0 avatar
      bumpy ii

      It’s not so much that VW *can’t* retrofit the non-urea cars, it’s that a buyback costs less than designing, manufacturing, installing, and warrantying all the necessary equipment (tank, lines, wiring harnesses, ECU, etc.) Even the urea-equipped cars may not be economical to reflash, since the equipment would consequently run at a much higher duty cycle than intended.

      • 0 avatar
        DenverMike

        The trucking industry dealt with the same. It’s much cheaper for a new truck than “retrofit” emissions on a pre emissions truck.

        • 0 avatar
          MRF 95 T-Bird

          Some in the trucking industry have “repowered” which is a upgraded engine and catalyst. Same for the school bus fleets since the buses and chassis can get many years of use.

  • avatar
    jimbob457

    I am in a circumstance where I can register a vehicle in either the US or Mexico. What is the VW diesel situation south of the border?

  • avatar
    seth1065

    As a TDI owner I am glad there is some movement on this, and I am surprised if VW is gonna buy it back and give you 5K for your trouble in cash, I assumed it would have been as a carrot to keep you in a VW, one thing that I am not sure about is , what happens if I do not want to trade my car in, I have a 11 that I bought new and has about 125,000 on it, yes I put some money in it but it has been a great car for what I need, lets say VW said it was worth 12k before scandal and here is 5K more so I have 17K to replace it with. I timed my car purchase so it would be paid off while I am paying collage tuition so I am not looking to take on more debt now, can I keep said car and wait for VW to come up w a fix? I assume the EPA will not just allow VW to keep the cars on the road as they are.

    • 0 avatar
      DenverMike

      It depends on what’s negotiated. If nothing’s negotiated, your TDI has to get “off road’ed” or someone has to pay a huge fine/fee for it to remain on the road ‘as-is’. Probably $20,000 or more.

  • avatar
    mcs

    Sort of off topic about the location that photo is from. You can get some very interesting routes if you punch in San Francisco as a destination on Google maps from that area. You’ll be in for the ride of your life. Not for the faint-of-heart. I think the best I got was from around 500 Easterby Street off of Bridgeway in Sausalito. The route was on roads that were like paved hiking trails with houses on them. Extra points if you’re in a large vehicle.


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