By on November 15, 2016

2014 audi a6 tdi engine

Volkswagen’s disastrous diesel debacle could nearly be over in the U.S.

Bloomberg has reported that sources close to the issue claim VW and U.S. regulators have agreed on a plan for the roughly 80,000 Volkswagen, Audi and Porsche vehicles equipped with emissions-cheating 3.0-liter engines. Those sources have also revealed how many vehicles will be bought back and scrapped, and how many will live to see another day.

Both the Environmental Protection Agency and California Air Resources Board (CARB) have agreed to let VW fix 60,000 vehicles with a simple software update, the sources claim. About 19,000 older vehicles would be too complex to fix, so the automaker will instead offer to purchase them from the owner.

The number of vehicles deemed unfixable could change before an official deal is announced.

The court-appointed lead counsel for the steering committee behind a consumer lawsuit against VW claims a deal hasn’t been reached. In an email, Elizabeth Cabraser said no agreement exists between owners and lessees of certain 3.0-liter VW Group vehicles.

“Any resolution must grant these consumers similar benefits — including a choice between a buyback or a fix if approved by regulators — as were offered to class members in the 2.0-liter vehicle litigation,” wrote Cabraser. “While an agreement between the EPA and Volkswagen may address some of the environmental damage, it does not hold the company accountable for the harm caused to consumers. We will continue to pursue a fair resolution on their behalf.”

Avoiding a full buyback would reportedly save the company $4 billion. As of now, there’s no price tag attached to the rumored plan. The models affected by the scandal are the VW Touareg, Porsche Cayenne, Audi Q5, Q7 and A8.

The U.S. District Court judge presiding over the issue got tired of waiting for a fix this past August, ultimately forcing VW to enter settlement talks. Already, VW’s diesel transgressions have cost the automaker $16.5 billion in the U.S. alone. The automaker choose to drag its feet to avoid repeating the costly full-scale buyback (with the option of a yet-nonexistent fix) seen with its 2.0-liter vehicle.

Satisfying regulators isn’t VW’s only task. It also faces a class-action lawsuit from customers (all of whom want their 3.0-liter vehicle bought back), and a Federal Trade Commission lawsuit over false advertising.

Note: This story has been updated to include comment from Elizabeth Cabraser, Court-appointed Lead Counsel for the Plaintiffs’ Steering Committee in the Volkswagen “Clean Diesel” Marketing, Sales Practices, and Products Liability Litigation.

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9 Comments on “Volkswagen, Feds Reach Fix and Buyback Deal on Remaining Diesels: Report...”


  • avatar
    orenwolf

    Gotta wonder what the deal is there. If VW could release an innocuous “software update” that fixed the issue they would have – so either the fix isn’t really a fix, or (more likely) there’s going to be some annoyed owners with engines that produce less power, or have worse fuel economy as a result of this “fix”, IMHO.

    • 0 avatar
      28-Cars-Later

      We fixed the glitch.

    • 0 avatar
      JimZ

      chances are it’ll lose a bit of performance and go through DEF a good bit faster.

    • 0 avatar
      Kyree S. Williams

      Well, of course. If there were a method by which to legally sail through emissions regulations and get the same performance, surely VW Group would have gone that route, rather than exposing itself to litigation and financial peril with deceitful software.

      But that’s what the restitution is for. With the 2.0-liter settlement, at least, owners are allowed to have a vehicle bought back for what its value was *before* the scandal, which compensates them for the loss of value in their cars…plus a big fat restitution check, which compensates them for a presumed loss in performance or increase in parts wear over time with the fix. Or they can get it fixed and just take the restitution. For my car, the purchase price plus the restitution pretty much add up to the original MSRP for the car (which I did not pay).

    • 0 avatar
      RobertRyan

      One Chapter closes on VW, but another opens with Cummins
      “Class action filed by Dodge Ram owners.

      Fiat Chrysler Automobiles NV and Cummins Inc said on Monday they will fight a class-action lawsuit filed against the companies accusing them of cheating on diesel emissions tests.”

  • avatar
    SCE to AUX

    I didn’t realize all 3.0 TDI customers wanted a buyback – that’s significant.

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