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Dealers Latest to Settle With VW Over Diesel Scandal

Funds to be paid out over 18 months.

by on Aug.25, 2016

Livingston VW, of Woodland Hills, CA, is one of the maker's 650 American franchisees.

(This story has been updated to reflect the cost of the new settlement.)

Two months after agreeing to a $14.7 billion deal with federal regulators over its cheating on diesel emissions tests, Volkswagen has reached another settlement covering its 650 U.S. dealers.

The maker will pay about $1.2 billion over the next 18 months to cover the losses dealers claim to have run up as a result of the scandal, in large part due to a sharp drop in the maker’s sales. Along with cash payments, VW will provide “additional benefits” to those dealers. The announcement moves Volkswagen closer to resolving its ongoing legal problems, though it still faces a number of additional challenges, including lawsuits by shareholders.

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“We believe this agreement in principle with Volkswagen dealers is a very important step in our commitment to making things right for all our stakeholders in the United States,” said Hinrich J. Woebcken, CEO of the North American Region, Volkswagen. “This agreement, when finalized, will strengthen the foundation for our future together and further emphasize our commitment both to our partners and the U.S. market.”

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Justice Dept. Readying Criminal Charges Against VW

Fine, government monitor among possible options.

by on Aug.16, 2016

VW could be asked to pay a criminal fine of as much as $1.2 bil, according to reports.

The U.S. Justice Department is reportedly in talks with Volkswagen AG as it prepares to lay out criminal charges against the automaker following an ongoing investigation of VW’s rigging of diesel emissions tests.

While charges against individuals could yet be revealed, several reports out of Washington suggest that federal prosecutors will focus on levying as much as $1.2 billion in fines against the embattled German automaker, and possibly appointing a monitor to oversee VW’s future behavior.

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Any settlement would come on top of the $14.7 billion Volkswagen agreed to pay as part of a civil settlement with the Justice Dept., the Environmental Protection Agency and the Federal Trade Commission. That deal, announced in June, included about $10 billion to buy back as many as 475,000 vehicles sold in the U.S. equipped with 2.0-liter diesel engines.

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Judge Approves $15 Bil VW Diesel Deal

But more legal problems await.

by on Jul.26, 2016

Judge Charles Breyer gives the deal a tentative go.

The $15 billion settlement last month in the Volkswagen diesel cheating scandal has won the tentative approval of U.S. District Judge Charles Breyer — but despite the record price tag, it doesn’t end the automakers legal problems.

The deal includes $10 billion to buy back or repair about 475,000 VW vehicles equipped with diesel engines that were rigged to illegally pass emissions tests. The rest of the settlement will go to various programs meant to compensate for the excess pollution those vehicles produced.

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“Volkswagen appreciates the constructive engagement of all the parties,” the maker said in a statement that followed Breyer’s ruling, “as the settlement approval process moves forward. The parties believe that the proposed settlement program will provide a fair, reasonable and adequate resolution for affected Volkswagen and Audi customers.”

The ruling brought an equally positive response from those on the other side of the courtroom.

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Judge to Decide on $15 Bil VW Settlement

Deal likely to get okay, but other challenges remain in diesel scandal.

by on Jul.26, 2016

Judge Charles Breyer will address the proposed 2.0-liter settlement during today's hearing.

The $15 billion deal covering Volkswagen’s diesel emissions cheating faces a critical test in federal court today before U.S. District Judge Charles Breyer.

The jurist is widely expected to approve the settlement between the German maker and various federal and state agencies. It includes $10 billion to buy back or repair about 475,000 VW vehicles equipped with diesel engines that were rigged to illegally pass emissions tests. The rest of the settlement will go to various programs meant to compensate for the excess pollution those vehicles produced.

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The deal only covers a 2.0-liter diesel engine, however. VW is still trying to negotiate a settlement for charges it rigged a 3.0-liter turbodiesel, as well. Meanwhile, the automaker faces a variety of other legal issues that could add billions to the final cost of the scandal – including lawsuits filed this month by three individual states.

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VW Believes it Can Repair 85k 3-liter Diesels

Move could help maker avoid second diesel vehicle buyback.

by on Jul.01, 2016

The Audi Q7 TDI is one of the numerous Audi, Porsche and VW models affected by the stop-sale.

Volkswagen believes it can fix the problem with about 85,000 vehicles using a faulty 3.0-liter diesel engine, the maker told a federal judge in San Francisco.

The revelation came shortly after VW and several federal agencies reached a $14.7 settlement on charges the maker had rigged a smaller diesel engine to pass U.S. emissions tests even though it grossly exceeded emissions rules in real world operations. That deal includes about $10 billion to buy back the 475,000 vehicles sold between the 2009 and 2015 model-years using a 2.0-liter turbodiesel.

Environmental News!

If it can convince the Environmental Protection Agency and the California Air Resources Board, or CARB, that the proposed fix works, VW would be able to avoid a second costly buyback.

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Q&A: When Will VW Start Writing Checks?

Don't expect money to start flowing until Autumn.

by on Jun.29, 2016

VW will offer buybacks on 475,000 diesel cars.

Volkswagen is settling charges that it rigged 475,000 diesel vehicles to cover up the fact that they don’t meet U.S. emissions standards. The $14.7 billion settlement includes about $10 billion that, according to federal regulators, will be used to compensate owners and get the faulty vehicles off the road.

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When will payments begin and who qualifies for compensation and the planned buyback? Can owners keep their vehicles if they prefer? Here’s what you’ll need to know:

What did VW agree to and why?

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Feds Outline Diesel Emissions Settlement with VW

But “criminal investigation is (still) active and ongoing.”

by on Jun.28, 2016

EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy calls the settlement "unprecedented" under the Clean Air Act.

Describing the settlement as “groundbreaking” and “unprecedented,” federal officials outlined a $14.7 billion, three-part deal with Volkswagen that will, among other things, remove as many as 475,000 diesel vehicles from U.S. roads.

But the agreement, which could yield significant compensation for those who own those vehicles, does not end the German automaker’s legal and financial problems. VW still has to reach a settlement covering about 50,000 additional vehicles. And it could yet face criminal charges and civil fines stemming from its efforts to cheat on government emissions tests.

Clearing the Air!

The settlement “marks the largest clean air mitigation step in the history of the Clean Air Act,” declared Deputy U.S. Attorney General Sally G. Yates during a news conference in Washington, D.C. But, she added, “It is by no means the final step.” Among other things, she added, “I can assure you our criminal investigation is active and ongoing.”

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VW Could Face Tens of Billions in Additional Compensation Costs

Senior EU official wants same compensation for European diesel owners.

by on Jun.28, 2016

Volkswagen is under fire after it paid a more costly settlement in the U.S. than in Europe. Officials there are calling for VW to voluntarily pay more now.

Volkswagen is expected to close a deal requiring it to pay $14.7 billion to settle charges it cheated on diesel emissions tests.

Under the agreement with U.S. and California authorities, the German maker will provide owners of vehicles equipped with its 2.0-liter turbodiesel at least $5,000 in compensation, and possibly a lot more if they choose to have VW buy back one of the affected vehicles.

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But the settlement only covers the nearly 500,000 2.0-liter TDI models sold in the U.S. during the 2009 to 2015 model-years – with a separate settlement to follow covering a 3.0-liter model, as well. That fact isn’t sitting well with European consumers and regulators who feel the automaker should provide compensation there, as well. (more…)

VW Diesel Owners Could Get over $10k Each Out of $14.7 Bil Settlement

Deal doesn’t end automaker’s problems in wake of emissions cheating scandal.

by on Jun.28, 2016

VW is expected to settle the key diesel emissions case on Tuesday in federal court in San Francisco.

Volkswagen could be on the hook to buy back nearly 500,000 diesel vehicles sold in the U.S., with many owners getting $10,000 or more as part of a federal settlement to the maker’s diesel emissions cheating scandal.

The deal, which has reportedly been accepted by the U.S. Justice Department, the Environmental Protection Agency, the Federal Trade Commission and the California Air Resources Board, or CARB, will be the first step in resolving a case triggered by the revelation VW had equipped cars using its 2.0-liter turbodiesel with software designed to lower pollution levels when those vehicles were undergoing emissions tests.

Beyond the Headlines!

All told, the maker has agreed to a deal worth around $14.7 billion. Of that, about $10 billion will go to compensating owners of the 2009 to 2015 diesel models. Another $2.7 billion is earmarked for “environmental remediation,” according to sources. The remaining $2 billion will fund environmental efforts, including the development of zero-emissions vehicles. Earlier this month, VW said it was planning to launch “at least 30 battery-based models by 2025.

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