At the annual photo shoot before VW’s accounts press conference kicked off, the managers on the board lined up for the cameras as usual.
But little else that was business as usual at the presentation as Volkswagen sought to distance itself from the past year’s struggles and focus on a bright new future.
The location of the press conference was more modest, in Wolfsburg where the company’s headquarters is located, a fitting decision for a company trying to underline not a flashy location but modesty, frugality and closeness to customers.
These aren’t areas where the company has distinguished itself and the change of tack is due to the group’s disastrous figures for 2015, the year it was found to have been rigging the results of diesel emissions tests. VW had to set aside €16.2 billion ($18.36 billion) for fines and technical improvements, leaving it with a net loss of billions.