Volkswagen to Restate Fuel Economy Rating on Gasoline-Powered Vehicles, Pay Owners $97 Million

By Paul Riegler on 31 August 2019
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Volkswagen of America said late Friday it had settled a lawsuit with vehicle owners over incorrect fuel economy ratings of certain gasoline-powered 2013 through 2017 models.

The automaker’s U.S. subsidiary said that the agreement covers approximately 98,000 vehicles or 3.5% of its sales over the four-year span and that it will restate fuel-economy ratings for these vehicles to reflect a discrepancy of 1 mile per gallon. VW will reimburse owners of impacted vehicles approximately $965 million.

The issue was discovered by the Environmental Protection Agency during its probe into the Dieselgate matter.

“In the course of the investigation concerning defeat devices in Volkswagen’s diesel vehicles, the EPA and the California Air Resources Board discovered that the company employed software to manage vehicle transmissions in gasoline vehicles,” the agency said in a statement.

The gasoline-model vehicles were equipped with software similar to the so-called defeat devices that would manipulate emissions levels in diesel-powered vehicles during tests to ensure the vehicles appeared to be compliant while the emissions controls were basically off when the vehicle was not in test mode that were at the core of the Dieselgate matter.

The settlement covers 13 vehicles including the 2013-2016 Audi 8L, the 2013-2016 Audi S8, the 2013-2017 Bentley Continental GT, the 2014-2016 Bentley Flying Spur, the 2013-2016 Porsche Cayenne S, the and the 2013-2014 Volkswagen Touareg.

VW will reimburse owners anywhere from $5.40 to $24.30 per month of ownership depending on the vehicle.  It will also adjust its greenhouse gas credits with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to allow for “any excess credits associated with the fuel economy discrepancy,” it said.  The settlement does not require VW to admit any wrongdoing or admit any liability.

(Photo: Accura Media Group)