Volkswagen's bill for cheating emissions tests

September 30, 2015 09:04 AM

Volkswagen has admitted to cheating diesel emissions tests in the United States, sending shares in Europe's largest carmaker down more than a third in value and sparking the biggest business crisis in its 78-year history.

Following are some of the costs the company could have to pay, excluding any potential drop in car sales or prices.


Volkswagen said on Sept. 29 it would recall up to 11 million vehicles worldwide that were fitted with illegal software. Some analysts have said this could cost more than $6.5 billion.


The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency said on Sept. 18 Volkswagen faced penalties of up to $18 billion for cheating in U.S. diesel emissions tests.

The German transport ministry has said the company manipulated tests in Europe too.

Regulators across Europe and in parts of Asia and central America are investigating.


California is preparing a major enforcement action against Volkswagen, the state's top air official said on Sept. 24.

Some analysts have said the company could face lawsuits under the U.S. Clean Air Act.

German prosecutors said on Sept. 23 they were conducting a preliminary investigation into Volkswagen following a number of criminal complaints from citizens.

Prosecutors in several other countries have followed suit.


Independent car dealerships sued Volkswagen in California on Sept. 24 over losses they said they would incur following the company's admission it cheated U.S. diesel emissions tests. 

Dozens of other U.S. lawsuits have been filed by owners of affected cars, and suits may follow elsewhere.

Robbins Geller Rudman & Dowd LLP filed a class action suit against Volkswagen on Sept. 25 on behalf of an institutional investor.

Some European shareholders said they were also considering claiming damages after the plunge in Volkswagen's shares.


Spain said on Sept. 29 that Volkswagen had agreed to return state car purchase subsidies on vehicles fitted with rigged engines. The country offered subsidies of 1,000 euros ($1,120) for energy efficient car purchases. 


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