Volkwagen Refuses to Offer Compensation to Europeans Affected by Emissions Situation

Volkswagen's proposed fix for EA189 engines 1 photo
Photo: Volkswagen
The EU industry commissioner wrote an official letter to Volkswagen’s CEO, which included a list of demands regarding the fix for the vehicles that have higher emissions than initially declared.
According to Automotive News, the list made by Elzbieta Bienkowska includes a possible compensation for the customers who purchased a Volkswagen vehicle with an emissions system that featured devices made to trick government testing.

The request of the EU official did not go unnoticed by Volkswagen’s boss, especially since the letter's motivation was built on the fact that customers of Volkswagen vehicles sold in the United States of America were promised compensation amounting to $1,000.

However, Volkswagen’s leaders do not feel the same way. The German company’s officials have stated that they will consider the issue and will come back to the EU Commissioner on the points discussed, but they do not feel the EU market is the same as the US market.

The German company explained that it cannot provide the same compensation in all markets, especially since they do not consider that European customers have been affected by the Dieselgate situation or the emissions problem involving gasoline engines.

The German corporation motivated its decision by highlighting the fact that it pledged to fix all the cars affected with no cost to the owners and to take care of any supplemental tax issues involving the previous emission figures generated by those vehicles.

If we take a look at the figures of the Volkswagen Dieselgate scandal, out of the 11 million vehicles affected worldwide, around 8.5 million were sold in Europe.

Along with the cost of fixing these cars and the occupation generated in the company’s service departments, providing compensation to each owner could bring the German company in a dangerous financial situation.

Since the Volkswagen Group is Europe’s largest carmaker and employs many people, risking those jobs and many other connected ones would pose a threat to economic stability on a European level.

Furthermore, EU laws are different from those applied in the United States of America, and the company might not be obliged to provide compensation if it repairs its wrongdoings.
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About the author: Sebastian Toma
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Sebastian's love for cars began at a young age. Little did he know that a career would emerge from this passion (and that it would not, sadly, involve being a professional racecar driver). In over fourteen years, he got behind the wheel of several hundred vehicles and in the offices of the most important car publications in his homeland.
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