Dieselgate Gets More Costly As 3.0-Liter V-6 Portion Settlement Reached
Volkswagen’s tab continues to climb in Dieselgate as the automaker, regulators and attorneys for customers have found a final settlement in rigging scandal. Under the agreement, announced Tuesday afternoon, VW will pay $1 billion to fix or buy back rigged 3.0-liter turbodiesels. The settlement involves about 60,000 vehicles that will receive a software upgrade to fix the rigging issues, while about 20,000 vehicles, too old to be repaired easily, will be candidates for buybacks from the automaker.
Vehicles made by Volkswagen, Porsche and Audi are covered by this portion of the diesel-rigging scandal. This week’s settlement pushes Volkswagen’s tab to settle the Dieselgate scandal to more than $17.5 billion. Another $200 million was also reportedly added to the mitigation fund VW must pay into. This pushes the tab to more than $17.7 billion, just to settle the civil portion of Volkswagen’s self-inflicted diesel-rigging scandal.
VW Facing Criminal Sanctions?
Volkswagen is now facing the added fines and penalties for the criminal parts of the scandal. The Justice Department has sued the world’s number two automaker for up to $46 billion in fines and penalties for violating the clean air laws. And, the Federal Trade Commission is looking into penalties for false advertising.
Hinrich Woebcken Volkswagen Group of America chief exec, called the settlement “another step forward in our efforts to make things right for our customers.”
As part of the agreement, VW is not only paying to mitigate environmental damages caused by its more than six-year emissions rigging scam, but it is also paying $2.7 billion into a development fund to improve and install zero emissions vehicle (electric) infrastructure (charging stations). Californiia is receiving $800 million, as part of the settlement, to grow a charging network.
U.S. District Court Judge Charles Breyer, who has been overseeing this phase of the Dieselgate class-action suit settlement and related actions announced approval of the settlement at a hearing Tuesday in San Francisco. Judge Breyer had earlier settled the 2.0-liter four-cylinder turbodiesel section of the class-acton suit. Some 475,000 owners have the option of receiving a buyback or repairs for their rigged engine. Since there is no 2.0-liter fix yet, it is hard for those buyers to do anything but ask for a buyback. At last count, nearly 400,000 owners had filed the papers for the repurchase plan.
Other Related Happenings
In other Dieselgate-related news:
- Robert Bosch, a major Volkswagen supplier, announced an agreement in principle to pay $300 million – published reports say – to settle charges related to the scandal.
- Volkswagen and Canada agreed to a $1.6 billion settlement plan.
- VW agreed to add three electric models for sale in California sales by 2020
Sources: Automotive News, www.newspressusa.com