Volkswagen finally has some good news on emissions

Posted on 10 Dec 2015 by Michael Cruickshank

Following months of deepening scandals related to car emissions, German automaker Volkswagen Group (VW) finally has some good news for its customers and investors.

Announcing the results of a month-long probe into reports of inconsistencies pertaining to the CO2 emissions of its vehicles, the company has stated that any problems are much smaller than anticipated.

The company had previously announced that some of its vehicles may have featured incorrect values for their CO2 emissions.

While initially the company feared that up to 800,000 vehicles may have had incorrect CO2 emissions values, internal research now suggests this number is a much smaller 36,000 vehicles.

According to Volkswagen’s estimates, these vehicles comprise only 0.5% of the volume of the brand.

“Following extensive internal investigations and measurement checks, it is now clear that almost all of these model variants do correspond to the CO2 figures originally determined,” the company explained in a statement.

Despite there being some variation between claimed CO2 emissions and real life values, these were much smaller than initially reported.

“The deviations found in the figures for only nine model variants amount to a few grams of CO2 on average,” VW concluded.

Importantly, the vehicles can be marketed and sold without any limitations and no evidence of unlawful activity was found, something which will save the company a substantial amount of money, while at the some time improving its brand image somewhat.

VW had initially put aside €2bn ($2.19bn) in order to manage the fallout from this scandal, however the bulk of this money may no longer be needed.

Other subsidiarily brands owned by VW including Audi, Skoda and Seat will also subject themselves to their own internal testing to find out if CO2 emissions followed a similar pattern in their vehicles.

In order to backup their position, the company is promising to use a “neutral technical service” under the auspices of the relevant authorities to conduct a review of its findings.

While the CO2 emissions scandal appears to be overblown, the company is still dealing with significantly worse problems caused by its alleged use of so-called ‘defeat devices’ to present incorrect pollution readings during tests.