Dieselgate Deal

Report: VW Reaches U.S. Settlement

VW car keys US American flag 56449591
A deal with U.S. regulators will help to resolve the diesel emissions scandal in the country.
  • Why it matters

    Why it matters

    A deal with U.S. authorities on a repair plan is crucial for Europe’s carmaker to resolve Dieselgate, put a price tag on the scandal and start winning back the trust of its customers.

  • Facts

    Facts

    • Volkswagen faces a U.S. deadline on Thursday to present a solution how to repair nearly 600,000 manipulated diesel cars in the United States.
    • Volkswagen admitted last September it had manipulated around 11 million diesel cars worldwide, making them emit lower amounts of toxic gases in testing.
    • The diesel emissions scandal could cost Europe’s largest carmaker as much as €30 billion, estimates suggest.
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    Audio

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Facing a key deadline, Volkswagen reportedly reached a deal over its diesel emissions scandal with U.S. authorities to prevent a court case from proceeding in the summer, German newspaper Die Welt reported Wednesday, citing unnamed people familiar with the negotiations.

As part of the agreement, U.S. owners of manipulated VW diesel cars will each receive $5,000, the paper said.

The deal with the regulators, including the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, has not been agreed in detail, but it does stipulate that VW will repair a majority of the 600,000 affected cars, buy back a smaller number of vehicles, pay a fine and commit itself to measures to protect the air, the newspaper said.

Citing two people familiar with the matter, Reuters reported VW would also offer to buy back almost 500,000 affected diesel cars in the United States as part of a deal, an offer it plans to present later on Thursday to a judge in California. The judge had set a deadline until later Thursday, for the carmaker to submit details about how it would to repair 580,000 manipulated diesel cars in the United States.

VW has also agreed to set up a compensation fund in excess of $1 billion, but it was not clear how much each car owner would receive, Reuters said, citing a person with knowledge of the matter.

Volkswagen’s preference shares rose 5.8 percent to €127.85 on Thursday morning in Frankfurt following news of a settlement. The stock had already jumped 6.6 percent on Wednesday on hopes that a deal with U.S. regulators might be relatively mild compared with expectations.

A person familiar with the talks told Handelsblatt that VW had reached a deal with affected car owners as well as with U.S. authorities. VW might face a bill of around $30 billion to pay fines, buy back cars and pay compensation to affected car owners, the person said.

VW would also announce on Thursday measures to protect the environment, probably to safeguard air quality, the person added.

Whether the $5,000 compensation and total costs of around $30 billion are correct, remains to be seen. Due to the complexity of the matter, many costs cannot be calculated exactly.

 

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