Volkswagen Won't Even Look at Its First-Quarter Earnings

Steph Willems
by Steph Willems
volkswagen wont even look at its first quarter earnings

Nope. Nuh-uh. Not gonna do it.

That was Volkswagen’s reaction to the idea of publishing its first-quarter results on time, according to Automotive News Europe, meaning the automaker’s current financial standing will be unknown until May 31.

The beleaguered company has bigger things to deal with in the near term — mainly, meeting the U.S. government’s April 21 deadline for a fix for vehicles caught up in the diesel emissions scandal. An April 21 deadline was issued last month by U.S. District Judge Charles Breyer, extending a missed deadline on a one-time-only basis.

Volkswagen will have to present a comprehensive plan for the 580,000 U.S. diesel models that satisfies the regulatory requirements of the Environmental Protection Agency and California Air Resources Board. That could include a full fix, a partial fix, a buyback program, environmental offsets, or a all of the above.

Earlier this month, Reuters reported that EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy wasn’t sure if Volkswagen would meet the deadline, given the complexity of the request. Talks have continued between the automaker and the regulators since then.

So great is the turmoil at Volkswagen, that the company still hasn’t released its 2015 earnings report. That document, which is expected to be grimmer than spending Christmas in a foreign jail, is scheduled to be released on April 28.

It all adds up to a “month of decisions” for the automaker, Metzler Bank analyst Juergen Pieper told Automotive News.

“There is a chance that this gigantic tanker after wandering aimlessly without radar finally manages to shift course,” said Pieper, apparently unaware of his heavily polluting, fuel-soaked metaphor.

Should the April 21 deadline come and go with no plan for a fix, it’s very likely that Volkswagen will be hauled into court over the summer.

In addition to the criminal investigations, lawsuits, ornery dealers and potential fines totaling in the tens of billions of dollars, Volkswagen also needs to turn around a severe sales slump. Tomorrow’s another day, and all that.

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  • Voyager Voyager on Apr 20, 2016

    Takes some time before (lazy) journalists pick up the news, particularly when it isn't initially picked up by Reuters or so, like the news regarding the Dutch wanting to prohibit ICE car sales by 2025. Anyway, today the German Handelsblatt writes that VW's cheating software was developed by Audi, as early as 1999. Take that in consideration I'd say when you decide to fine VW. We, in Europe, are helpless. No chances of getting compensation, because of EU's corrupted testing methods.

  • Storz Storz on Apr 20, 2016

    The scandal broke on Sept 18th, I had listed my 2012 for sale on Aug 25th of last year. I just want a buy back on the car that I can't (no one is buying) sell now.

  • 3SpeedAutomatic And this too shall pass.....Ford went thru this when the model T was introduced. It took the moving assembly line to make real money. As time progressed, it got refined, eventually moving to the Model A. Same kind of hiccups with fuel injection, 4 speed automatic, Firestone tires, dashboards with no radio knobs, etc, etc, etc. Same thing with EVs. Yep, a fire or two in the parking lot, espresso time at the charging stations, other issues yet to be encountered, just give it time. 🚗🚗🚗
  • Art Vandelay 2025 Camaro and Challenger
  • Mike Beranek Any car whose engine makes less than 300 ft-lbs of torque.
  • Malcolm Mini temporarily halted manual transmission production but brought it back as it was a surprisingly good seller. The downside is that they should have made awd standard with the manual instead of nixing it. Ford said recently that 4dr were 7% manual take rate and I think the two door was 15%.
  • Master Baiter It’s hard to make predictions, especially about the future. It will be interesting to see if demand for Ford’s EVs will match the production capacity they are putting on line.