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Fiat Chrysler Subpoenaed By Feds Over Diesel Emissions Allegations

VW spends nearly $3b on diesel buyback.

by on Mar.01, 2017

A Ram 1500 EcoDiesel.

The investigation of allegations Fiat Chrysler Automobiles cheated on diesel emissions is moving into high gear, the maker revealing he has received subpoenas from a variety of federal authorities.

The smallest of the Detroit automakers in January announced it was coming under investigation for allegedly rigging its diesel engines to pass tough U.S. emissions standards. FCA Chief Executive Sergio Marchionne rejected those charges during a news conference at the North American International Auto Show.

Stay in the Loop!

The FCA investigation ramps up just as Volkswagen begins to wrap up its own diesel emissions scandal. Court documents released this week revealed that the German maker has so far spend $2.9 billion to buy back vehicles sold in the U.S. using a rigged, 2.0-liter turbodiesel. VW set aside $10 billion for buybacks as part of a settlement with the government announced last July.

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VW Delivers Profitable Surprise

Earnings “significantly higher” despite diesel scandal.

by on Jul.20, 2016

Regaining momentum: VW delivers a strong, first-half profit despite the costs of its diesel scandal.

Volkswagen AG beat its earnings forecast for the first half of 2016, delivering “significantly higher” profits even while setting aside another 2.2 billion euros, or $2.4 billion, to cover the growing cost of its diesel emissions scandal.

The news comes a day after New York and two other states filed suit against the embattled German maker, claiming senior executives had helped cover up the diesel emissions subterfuge. Last month, VW agreed to a $14.7 billion settlement covering its 2.0-liter diesel, a deal that includes $10 billion to buy back nearly 500,000 vehicles.  Most of the funds VW has so far committed to settle what it calls the “diesel issue” came out of 2015 earnings, however.

By the Numbers!

For the first half of 2016, VW said it had an operating profit of 7.5 billion euros, or $8.25 billion. That would drop to 5.3 billion euros after factoring in the latest charges for the emissions scandal, money largely related to legal costs in North America.

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VW Back in the Black but Diesel Scandal Takes a Stiff Toll

Profits down 20% year-over-year.

by on May.31, 2016

VW gets back into the black for Q1, but the maker see lower sales and smaller margins for all of 2016.

Volkswagen AG clawed its way back into the black during the first quarter of this year following the spectacular plunge it took last year as it dealt with a global diesel emissions scandal.

Even so, the maker’s $2.6 billion profit for the January-March quarter was down 20.1% from year earlier numbers. Excluding one-time items, VW’s operating profit was down 5.9%, to $3.5 billion. Sales and other revenues, meanwhile, slipped 3.4%, to $56.8 billion.

By the Books!

“In light of the wide range of challenges we are currently facing, we are satisfied overall with the start we have made to what will undoubtedly be a demanding fiscal year 2016,” VW CEO Matthias Mueller said in a statement.

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VW Offering $1 Bil to US Diesel Owners

Reported plan would give $5,000 to each owner of rigged diesel cars.

by on Apr.20, 2016

VW could announce the compensation plan as early as this week.

Volkswagen will offer U.S. owners of vehicles with rigged diesel engines $5,000 apiece, according to a plan the embattled German automaker is reportedly preparing.

The deal, which is expected to cost VW just over $1 billion, could be disclosed as early as tomorrow when the carmaker is expected to appear before a federal judge in San Francisco. But VW is not believed to yet have a plant to fix those diesels, as it was supposed to put together by April 21st, according to reports in both the German newspaper Die Welt and on the Associated Press wire service.

Breaking News!

VW is facing more than 500 lawsuits filed on behalf of diesel owners in the wake of revelations it had equipped its vehicles with a so-called “defeat device,” software designed to detect when those cars were undergoing emissions tests and then modify engine operations to reduce levels of smog-causing oxides of nitrogen. Almost 550,000 of those vehicles were sold in the U.S., with 11 million sold worldwide.

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Volkswagen Get Reprieve as Judge Extends Deadline

Automaker sorting out technical issues with possible solution.

by on Mar.25, 2016

CEO Matthias Mueller has now warned that the cost of settling the case will be "substantial."

Volkswagen made enough progress on plans to remove or fix its emissions-cheating diesel-powered vehicles in the U.S. to gain a month-long extension on the deadline for a resolution from the judge overseeing the lawsuit against the maker by the Justice Department.

Senior U.S. District Court Judge Charles Breyer gave the German automaker until April 21 to provide him with the timing of the solution as well as potential payments to owners.

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“I would hope by the 21st that as many astounding issues as possible will be wrapped up,” he said.

Breyer appointed former FBI Director Robert Mueller to supervise VW’s settlement talks with the Justice Department. He noted that Mueller informed him the automaker is making substantial progress toward a resolution that would get the polluting cars off the road. (more…)

VW Hit With New Lawsuits by Investors, Former Employee

Embattled maker accused of destroying diesel data.

by on Mar.15, 2016

VW officials initially thought the scandal would have a minimal financial impact.

Already facing more than 500 lawsuits in the U.S., Volkswagen has been hit with two new legal actions that could seriously compound the problems it is facing in the wake of revelations it cheated on diesel emissions tests.

One suit, filed in Germany by major institutional investors, seeks nearly $3.6 billion due to the lost value in Volkswagen shares which have plunged by a third since the scandal broke last September. The other new legal action was initiated by a former VW employee who claims he was fired after trying to prevent the deletion of data connected to emissions test cheating.

Breaking News!

The latter suit could prove particularly problematic as Volkswagen is under criminal investigation in several countries, including both the U.S. and Germany, and was ordered to preserve potential evidence related to its admitted rigging of diesel tests.

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Dirty VW Diesels May Remain on the Road

California regulators fear no easy fix available.

by on Mar.10, 2016

Some older VW diesel models may not be completely fixed, says a California regulator.

Volkswagen has just two weeks to deliver an acceptable solution to its dirty diesel problem, according to the orders of a federal judge. But regulators in California are starting to worry that the maker might not be able to come up with a satisfactory fix short of scrapping tens of thousands of those vehicles.

As a result, a senior official with the California Air Resources Board says the organization is considering whether to let those vehicles continue to operate while falling short of both state and federal clean air mandates.

Breaking News!

“Our goal has been to fix the vehicles and return them to their certified configuration as expeditiously as possible,” CARB enforcement chief Todd Sax said during a legislative hearing in Sacramento. “Unfortunately, this may not be possible.”

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German Prosecutors Target 17 in VW Diesel Scandal

CEO foresees “substantial and painful” financial damage.

by on Mar.08, 2016

Volkswagen CEO Matthias Mueller has been trying to contain the diesel scandal.

German prosecutors have now put 17 people under investigation as they widen their probe of Volkswagen’s diesel emissions cheating scandal.

The number has grown in recent weeks from the initial six employees prosecutors say they were targeting – and now goes well beyond the “handful of engineers” VW’s senior executives have long said were behind the cheating.

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Separately, VW CEO Matthias Mueller on Tuesday said he expects the scandal to result in “substantial and painful” financial damage before it is fully resolved. The maker has already set aside more than $7 billion to cover those costs while also setting up a credit line for as much as $20 billion more.

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Federal Judge Demands Fix for VW Diesel Problem

Deadline set for March 24.

by on Feb.26, 2016

Judge Charles Breyer want VW to speed up diesel repairs, settlements with owners.

A federal judge in San Francisco is giving Volkswagen a month to come up with an acceptable fix that would bring 600,000 polluting diesel vehicles into compliance with U.S. emissions laws.

The announcement by U.S. District Judge Charles Breyer comes as the maker begins repairs of more than 10 million other diesel vehicles it sold outside of the United States. But so far, the German maker hasn’t been able to come up with a solution that will satisfy the Environmental Protection Agency, which first revealed last September that VW had cheated on diesel emissions tests.

The Last Word!

“Six months is long enough” to come up with a solution, said Judge Breyer, who will oversee hundreds of lawsuits filed against the German maker that were recently consolidated before his court. “This is an ongoing problem.”

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VW Blames “Whole Chain of Mistakes” for Diesel Emissions Cheating

Focus of inquiry is on “very limited group which acted irresponsibly.”

by on Dec.10, 2015

VW Chairman Hans Dieter Poetsch blames a "very limited group" for the diesel emissions cheating.

Unable to meet increasingly rigid U.S. emissions standards, a “very limited group…acted irresponsibly,” said Volkswagen Chairman Hans Dieter Poetsch, in an interim report on the carmaker’s internal investigation of its diesel emissions cheating.

VW is facing billions of dollars in fines and other costs related to the scandal which was triggered by the revelation in September that it installed a so-called “defeat device” in nearly 500,000 vehicles sold in the U.S. between 2009 and 2015, and more than 11 million models sold worldwide.

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For the Record!

“We are not talking about a one-off mistake, but a whole chain of mistakes that was not interrupted at any point along the time line,” Poetsch said during a meeting with reporters at VW’s headquarters in Wolfsburg, Germany.

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