VW Returns Diesel Car and Diesel Car Manufacturer of the Year Awards

By Jesse Sokolow on 6 October 2015
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Then-CEO of Volkswagen Jonathan Browning receiving Diesel Car Manufacturer of the Year award from Jonathan Spira

Volkswagen of America said Tuesday it was returning Diesel Car Manufacturer of the Year Awards for 2012 and 2013 as well as the Diesel Car of the Year Award for 2013, which was given to the VW Passat.

The move, announced in a letter signed by Michael Horn, the company’s CEO, comes in the wake of Volkswagen Group’s admission in September that it deliberately deceived government authorities and customers about the level of emissions from its diesel-powered automobiles in the United States and in other markets.

Each year, The Diesel Driver’s readers select the Diesel Car of the Year and the Diesel Car Manufacturer of the Year through online voting. In 2013, Wolfsburg-based Volkswagen received 51.1% of the 6,147 votes cast by readers of The Diesel Driver to win Diesel Car Manufacturer of the Year. The votes came from over 100 countries. Sixty-seven percent of the votes were cast by readers in the United States, while 7% of the votes were from Canada, 5% came from Russia, and 3% originated in Germany.

Published criteria for the Diesel Car of the Year Award includes fuel economy and greenhouse gas emissions as well as performance, handling, styling, comfort, and the overall package.

The letter, addressed to TDD Editor-in-Chief Jonathan Spira, read as follows:

Dear Mr. Spira,

I greatly value our company’s relationship with The Diesel Driver over the years, and it is very important to us at Volkswagen that this relationship continues for many years to come.

In light of the recent action by EPA concerning our 2.0L TDI vehicles and associated allegations, out of respect for you and your esteemed publication, we feel it best at this time to return the 2012 and 2013 Diesel Manufacturer of the Year awards as well as the 2013 Diesel Car of the Year Award for the Passat TDI. Volkswagen is honored to have been a recipient of these prestigious awards, and we are determined to earn more such accolades in the future.

All best wishes,

Michael Horn,
President and CEO
Volkswagen Group of America

(Photo: Accura Media Group)