Report: VW Ready to Pay $5,000 to U.S. Car Owners Hit by Emissions Cheating

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In a move to avert a court battle, the German auto company is said to be rolling out a settlement offer. Meanwhile, another carmaker admits it cheated on fuel efficiency data.

Volkswagen may have cut a deal with the United States to pay American VW owners $5,000 each to settle its case surrounding diesel emissions cheating, reported German newspaper Die Welt. The German report, picked up Reuters, said the deal would be presented in a U.S. court on April 21. The German car company had admitted months ago to faking emissions information for its diesel vehicles. A federal judge mandated the company come up with a fix for the problem by April 21.

The newspaper, citing unnamed sources, says the deal doesn’t say how the company will fix the cars, but that it will do so at no cost, in addition to paying car owners the $5,000. The deal is not official, however, and timelines and numbers could change as things are finalized over the coming months. The settlement will apply to about 600,000 affected vehicles in the United States.

A similar deal for VW owners in Europe is likely.

The company enjoyed a boost to stock prices in trading on the German market after the news broke, due partly to taking concrete steps to put this issue to rest and also because it helps put a price tag on the fallout from the scandal. Knowing the size of the liability could, after months of uncertainty, allow investors to make an informed decision about the company.

In other breaking auto industry news, Japan’s Mitsubishi Motors executives revealed that mileage test data for the company’s minicars sold in Japan has been manipulated to exaggerate the fuel efficiency of some 620,000 vehicles produced in the past three years, Bloomberg reported.

The tests overstated fuel efficiency by 5 percent to 10 percent, and Mitsubishi Motors said it’s investigating who’s responsible. The company said the violation may result in the Japanese automaker having to pay back government tax rebates for the vehicles, of which 468,000 were supplied to Nissan Motor Co.

What do you think Volkswagen should do to make good with car owners affected by its shenanigans? Share your thoughts in comments below or on our Facebook page.

Stacy Johnson

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