Last week’s headlines were dominated by the massive emissions-cheating scandal at German car maker Volkswagen, who was “outed” by independent investigators for fitting elaborate electronic devices that allowed more than 480,000 diesel VWs to cheat their way past EPA emissions testing. Even before the EPA announced whether or not it intended to hit VW with the full force of an $18 billion fine, VW’s stock prices plummeted as news broke that this was a global problem effecting more than 11 million VW cars worldwide. A number of Audi vehicles were also fitted with the device, although how many, exactly, wasn’t clear until recently — and that number is: 2 million.
That’s right. More than 2 million Audi A1, A3, A4, A5, A6, TT, Q3, and Q5 models equipped with the TDI diesel engine option have been fitted with the Volkswagen emissions cheat. Of those, roughly 13,000 vehicles are in the US with an additional 577,000 residing in Germany. The remaining 1.4 million cars are scattered throughout Europe, but won’t be doing much to help VW’s corporate image, regardless of where they’re at.
Volkswagen Audi PR Nightmare Continues
Let’s face it. The last time Volkswagen and Audi/Auto Union faced a PR situation this bad it was because Adolf Hitler and the Nazis were promoting the things. This is a company that has been promoting itself as an engineering and environmental leader for years, and — well — it just all seems like nonsense today, doesn’t it?
Maybe I’m wrong, and VW can get itself (and Audi) out of this current mess — but I think it will take a generation of car buyers (and EPA investigators!) to come and go before that happens. What do you guys think? Let us know, in the comments.
Source | Images: Motorpasion.