Volkswagen Group India has
notified the Ministry of Heavy Industries and the Automotive Research Association of India (ARAI)
that approximately 323700 cars belonging to the Volkswagen, Skoda and Audi
companies in India have been affected by the fallout of the diesel emissions
scam that hit the group worldwide leading to recall of millions of cars globally
and penalty damages worth billions of US dollars.
In a press statement
Volkswagen has stated that the Volkswagen Group India has presented its
observations, findings and outlines of possible solutions on the EA 189 diesel
engines to the Government of India – Ministry of Heavy Industries and ARAI
(Automotive Research Association of India). The recall will encompass cars from
the Volkswagen, Audi and Skoda model range which carry the software that
requires to be updated.
The press note said that
Volkswagen Group India will first present the technical released solution to
Ministry of Heavy Industries and ARAI. Once approved from the competent
authorities, the respective brands of the Volkswagen Group in India will carry
out necessary actions in a step-wise manner. The existing installed software
does not affect the handling, technical safety or roadworthiness of the cars,
the company has maintained.
As per the records of
Volkswagen Group India, from 2008 till end of November 2015, approximately
198,500 cars from Volkswagen, 88,700 cars from Skoda and 36,500 cars from Audi
across various models sold in India have been equipped with the EA 189 engines
which include 1.2-litre, 1.5-litre, 1.6-litre and 2.0-litre diesel engines.
All the owners of vehicles
with EA 189 engines will be informed by Volkswagen Group India through the
respective brands about the technical measures that will be implemented in
their cars. All necessary technical measures will be implemented in the
vehicles at no cost to the customers, the release added.
Volkswagen Group India remains
fully committed to the Indian market and will not deviate from its future
planned investments, product plans and launches. All brands of Volkswagen Group
in India will work strongly towards regaining the customer confidence and
trust, the release concluded.
Motown India had carried
an indepth story of the diesel scam in the October 2015 issue of the magazine
titled “Das Auto Scam” . It was the biggest scam to hit the global auto industry. No recall of a car,
anywhere in the world, had ever had such a distasteful flavour of deceit and
intrigue. Germany based Volkswagen has some of the best brands under its
massive umbrella that cover cars, motorcycles and commercial vehicles. These
mega brands include Volkswagen, Audi, Bentley, Lamborghini, Porsche, Bugatti,
SEAT, Skoda, Ducati, MAN and Scania.
The scam involved
manipulations by the company that violated emission norms. Revelations from the
Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) in the US stated VW had dodged
environmental rules for which penalty could run up to more than $18 billion.
This could also result in the Volkswagen Group recalling 11 million cars built
anywhere between 2009 and 2015.
The emissions scam exploded
when the EPA issued a notice of violation (NOV) of the Clean Air Act (CAA) to Volkswagen
AG, Audi AG, and Volkswagen Group of America, Inc. alleging that the
four-cylinder Volkswagen and Audi diesel cars from model years 2009-2015
included software that circumvented EPA emissions standards for certain air
pollutants. California separately issued an In-Use Compliance letter to
Volkswagen, and EPA and the California Air Resources Board (CARB) both
initiated investigations based on Volkswagen’s alleged actions.
“Using a defeat device in cars
to evade clean air standards is illegal and a threat to public health,” said
Cynthia Giles, Assistant Administrator for the Office of Enforcement and
Compliance Assurance. “Working closely with the California Air Resources Board,
EPA is committed to making sure that all automakers play by the same rules. EPA
will continue to investigate these very serious matters,” she said in a
statement made a few months ago.