Volkswagen may pay more than €13bn in US emissions settlement

28 Jun 2016

Following the incredible emissions scandal of last year, Volkswagen will reportedly have to pay out around €9,000 in compensation and buybacks to US owners of affected vehicles, with environmental fines also factored into the multi-billion dollar deal.

Volkswagen has reportedly reached a settlement totalling around €13.2bn after a pretty awful year for the company following a truly bizarre emissions scandal that rocked the motor industry.

Last year, regulators revealed that Volkswagen cars were fitted with software that tricked emissions tests, with the German car manufacturer recalling millions of cars worldwide.

The fallout stretched far and wide, with cars made under various brands owned by Volkswagen – Audi, Skoda and Seat – also affected.

The software designed to cheat emissions tests was included in the engine management system of Volkswagen’s EA 189 diesel engine that was in Volkswagen, Audi, Seat and Skoda vehicles sold between 2008 and 2014.

After the software was discovered, it revealed that some models of cars could have been pumping out 10 times the legal limit of nitrogen oxide.

The trade-in option suggested in the settlement reports will relate to the value of Volkswagen cars from before the scandal, with values since then down almost one-fifth.

According to Bloomberg, people associated with the deal have suggested that the compensation figure has spiked in recent days. The settlement will be filed today (28 June), with a judge needed to ratify it.

In Ireland, almost 80,000 cars were recalled following the revelations. The cars included 34,387 Volkswagen passenger cars, 8,107 Volkswagen commercial vehicles, 16,484 Audis and 16,004 Skodas that were sold through Volkswagen’s authorised dealer network.

Calls for compensation in Ireland have grown, with the The Irish Times quoting a solicitor involved in such calls, Liam Moloney, as saying the car giant should act in a similar fashion over here.

“Volkswagen Group Ireland should follow the lead of their US parent company and enter into fair settlement talks to properly compensate consumers who are at a loss as a result of their actions,” he’s quoted as saying.

Engine image via Simone Mescolini/Shutterstock

Gordon Hunt was a journalist with Silicon Republic