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‘Dieselgate’ Update – UK Owners will NOT Receive Any Compensation Payments

‘Dieselgate’ Update – UK Owners will NOT Receive Any Compensation Payments

September 2015 saw the Volkswagen scandal rock the motoring world.  11 million cars worldwide had been found to be fitted with a device that cheated NOx emissions tests.

The affected vehicles were found to be releasing up to 40 times the legal limit of Nitrogen Oxide.  1.2 million of these cars were revealed to be in the UK.  The scandal did not stay contained to Volkswagen cars either - Seat, Audi and Skoda models were also affected.  If you are concerned that your car may be affected it only takes a few seconds to check.

Volkswagen -

Audi -

Skoda -

Seat -

In November 2015 the scandal rumbled on as it was revealed up to 80,000 cars also had CO2 emissions and economy ratings that had been wrongly certified in Europe.

The impact for Volkswagen has yet to be fully realised.  Data shows a fall in sales of 4.8% last year, which equates to 295,300 fewer cars sold.  As the scandal developed late in the year, 2016 has the potential to show a more dramatic fall in sales.  There are concerns from owners of Volkswagen vehicles that resale values may be affected.  The impact on value will not be clear for some time yet.  It will depend on many variables such as how well Volkswagen handle the repairs to affected vehicles and how well the company’s reputation is recovered.    

Volkswagen has since been apologising and apologising and apologising some more!  There are now plans in place to fix all of the affected vehicles.  Here in the UK correcting affected cars will be undertaken in 3 phases.

  • March 2016 – Cars with the 2.0 litre TDi engine will be fixed using a software upgrade that will take under an hour to complete.
  • June 2016 – Cars with a 1.2 litre engine will be corrected, although exact plans are yet to be confirmed.
  • July 2016 – cars with a 1.6 litre TDi engine will need more extensive work to be corrected, including a new mesh grille around the engine to improve air flow.

Customers are advised that they will be contacted when it is time for their vehicle to be fixed.  Until then every vehicle involved in this scandal is perfectly safe to drive.  In an effort to keep sales happening Volkswagen are offering existing customers savings off certain models in their range, with their new Volkswagen Loyalty Bonus.  Savings range from £400 - £1,500 as follows:-

  • Volkswagen Up!               £400 off
  • Volkswagen Polo             £500 off
  • Volkswagen Golf, Golf Estate, Golf SV, Golf Cab, Beetle and Beetle Cab, Scirocco, Jetta, Touran, Tiguan, Passat Saloon and Estate, CC and E-Vehicles      £1,000 off
  • Volkswagen Sharan and Touareg              £1,500 off           

These savings are in addition to any other current dealer offer.  Customers will need to have owned their Volkswagen for at least 90 days and be able to produce their V5 to take advantage of the offer.

Over in the US, those who own vehicles involved in the scandal are being offered a $1,000 goodwill payment … those in the UK were probably hoping they would also receive some form of compensation.  However, Mr Willis, Volkswagen’s UK Managing Director has notified the Transport Select Committee that he does not believe it is necessary to compensate those in the UK.  Instead money available will be used to make the process of fixing affected vehicles as fast as possible.  Owners in the US will be waiting longer for their vehicles to be corrected, hence the need for them to have a goodwill payment.

There has been no official annoucement  regarding the issue of wrongly certificated CO2 and economy ratings.  The only official word has been from the UK Government who have reassured drivers of affected vehicles that if they find themselves in a different tax band due to this error, they will not have to pay the higher level of road tax.  

With fines still to pay, cars still to fix, the possibility of being sued by owners and a reputation to repair, Volkswagen still have a lot of clearing up to do before the 'dieselgate' scandal becomes old news.  

Do you think those in the UK should also be receiving compensation from Volkswagen?

The comments above do not necessarily reflect Rivervale's views unless clearly stated.

19 January 2016
Written by Natalie Faughy
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