Volkswagen Recall Lawsuit

by consumerdefense | Last Updated: December 20, 2015

What is the issue?

Volkswagen and Audi owners who purchases “clean diesel” found out that they vehicles their vehicles were hardly clean. The engines that were purported to be ‘clean diesel’ emitted up to 40 times above the maximum allowed in the U.S.. So how were they passed off as ‘clean diesel’? Volkswagen faked it.

What Is Clean Diesel and How Did VW and Audi Fake it?

Diesel motors are more expensive, get better torque, and are far more fuel efficient than gasoline powered engines. The problem, traditionally, has been that they are very dirty and ­ in the U.S. ­ its very difficult and costly to make diesel motors that conform to U.S. EPA emission standards.

However, over the last few years, auto makers like Volkswagen and Audie have been churning out ‘clean diesel’ cars that seemed to have solved the engineering feat of conforming to EPA standards.

The catch? Instead of finding an engineering solution to the problem, VW introduced technology that tricked inspectors into thinking that the vehicles emissions were compliment with EPA standards.

What Models are Affected?

The EPA’s findings allege that over 480,000 cars in the US alone were fitted with this “defeat software” ­ and 11 million worldwide. The affected model include the Audi A3, the VW Jetta, Beetle, Golf, and Passat. The EPA has also accused Volkswagen of modifying the 3 liter diesel engines found on certain models of Porsches.

Why is This a Big Deal?

The EPA has the power to fine Volkswagen up to $37,500 per vehicle ­ in this case a maximum of right around $18 billion. How does this help the consumer? The short answer is, it doesn’t.

What Has Volkswagen’s Response Been?

According to VW executive Michael Horn, “We’ve totally screwed up.” Former chief executive, Martin Winterkorn (whom resigned because of the scandal) said that the company had broken the trust of the public and their customers. This might be the understatement of the year. In the face of several class action lawsuits, Volkswagen has offered affected customers a “goodwill offer”.

Can I Keep Driving My Car?

This recall is based on emissions and the presence of the “defeat software” in the car.  Therefore, it should not pose an immediate safety concern. According to the EPA, if you own one of the recalled diesel vehicles, you should be O.K. to keep driving it for now.

However, just because the car is safe right now, does not mean you should not explore your legal options. Remember, you paid a premium for the ‘clean diesel’ motor and Volkswagen completely abused your trust.

What Can You Do About it?

Volkswagen AG’s actions could and likely will decrease the value of affected vehicles.  In this case, those consumers who have purchased one are entitled to compensation for their losses.  Filing a lawsuit may be the only recourse consumers have.

How Long Do I Have To File a Lawsuit or Join A Class Action?

The time limits on filing a lawsuit or joining a class action are different in each state.   If you think you may want to file, you should speak with an attorney as soon as possible.