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New VW Group CEO: “swift and relentless clarification” of emissions scandal; technical solution to be presented to authorities

6 October 2015

Speaking at a plant meeting in Wolfsburg, Matthias Müller, the new CEO of Volkswagen AG, promised employees “swift and relentless clarification” of the emissions scandal. He said that what had happened went against everything the Group and its people stand for and that there was no excuse.

Müller said that the company will shortly be presenting the technical solutions to the responsible authorities—in particular the German Federal Motor Transport Authority (KBA)—for approval. Müller said that while in many instances a software update will be sufficient, some vehicles will also require hardware modifications. “We will keep our customers constantly informed about the measures and arrange workshop appointments.

Apart from the enormous financial damage which it is still not possible to quantify as of today, this crisis is first and foremost a crisis of confidence. That is because it is about the very core of our company and our identity: it is about our vehicles. Our most important task will therefore be to win back the trust we have lost—with our customers, partners, investors and the general public. Only when everything has been put on the table, when no single stone has been left unturned, only then will people begin to trust us again.

—Matthia Müller

Frost & Sullivan’s recommendations
Frost & Sullivan proposes the following eight strategies Volkswagen can utilize to regain consumer trust, fuel sales volumes and develop sustainable revenue growth opportunities:
  1. Focus on emerging markets
  2. Position hybrid and electric powertrain as priorities
  3. Focus on passenger safety
  4. Position the company as a pioneer in sustainable mobility and synthetic fuels
  5. Treat connected cars as a basic and major focal point
  6. Bring Audi, Porsche, and other brands to the fore
  7. Increase focus of commercial vehicle business
  8. Conduct rigorous voluntary emission testing and certification

The CEO asked employees for their understanding, saying that he, too, did not yet have the answer to many questions: “Believe me, like you, I am impatient. But in this situation, where we are dealing with four brands and many model variants, care is even more important than speed.

The Group CEO also emphasized that all of the affected vehicles are technically safe and roadworthy: “At no time was the safety of our customers compromised. And above all: all EU6 diesel vehicles comply with legal specifications and environmental requirements. For Wolfsburg, that means production can continue.

However, Müller noted, although the technical solutions to the affair are imminent, it was not yet possible to quantify the commercial and financial implications.

That is why we have initiated a further critical review of all planned investments. Anything that is not absolutely necessary will be cancelled or postponed. And it is why we will be intensifying the efficiency program. To be perfectly frank: this will not be a painless process. We will do everything we can to ensure that Volkswagen continues to stand for good and secure jobs in the future.

At the IAA we demonstrated that the Volkswagen Group is well positioned when it comes to the key technologies of the future. We cannot afford to jeopardize this strong position now. We must make massive savings to manage the consequences of this crisis. At the same time, though, we cannot afford to economize on the future. That is something else we will also be addressing over the coming weeks and months.

Volkswagen must once again stand for more integrity. Not just on paper. But anytime, anywhere. We will make every effort to make very sure that the rules are respected by everyone. This Group and its brands stand for sustainability, for responsibility, for credibility. At the moment, much of that seems to have been deeply shaken. But: together with you, I am determined to prove that our values remain our guide. And that Volkswagen, that each one of us, deserves the trust of people everywhere.

—Matthias Müller

October 6, 2015 in Emissions, Engines, Market Background, Vehicle Manufacturers | Permalink | Comments (13)

Comments

He said that what had happened went against everything the Group and its people stand for and that there was no excuse.

I beg to differ. This went on for seven years. Actions speak louder than words: cheating and willfully violating the law is what you did and who you are. VW's actions put its corporate culture on prominent display.

'Müller said that while in many instances a software update will be sufficient, some vehicles will also require hardware modifications.'

I believe the majority of US vehicles will require new HW.

It was secret that was kept for 7 years- meaning very few people knew of it. It could be as few as a handful of people. One engineer in charge, one to put the alternate code in, and a few testers. VW blew it when they refused to use the ‘AdBlue’ technology under license from Mercedes. Without urea injection, they found out it was impossible to meet emissions without cheating. Marketers at VW cornered the engineers.

Thought maybe you would like to see how dirty the so called clean VW diesel engine really is; note the crap escaping into the atmosphere that also represents the fix. The VW dealers don't do this they charge you $1,200 and change the entire intake. VW has been lying about their diesels for years using PR instead engineering to fix the problems:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xIijYgvxW0g

Also:
Think how easy an EV driveline is to fix compared to the high carbon fuel diesel and the gasoline engines are. A car with an ICE in it will be completely obsolete by 2020. Hurry up with the batteries Elon!

The above communique reveals the most urgent threat to VW; brain drain. VW can pay cash to atone, but they may not survive a deep crisis of confidence among their top flight talent.

We can wish good luck to Mattias Muller in tackling such a giiagantic mess, they will be sued and face investigations for years to come, they will bleed money like crazy, they will have to lay off people and then have to face anger and protestation from their unions. Honestly I don't think they can survive it without selling Porsche to get fresh cash. Because the other problem is this happen when the sales are slowing fast particularly in China. And the margin they make on the Volkswagen are close to zero.

LAD. Thanks for YouTube. That's HeeHaa funny.

ECI. I agree. Morale and brain drain will be an issue for VW. I believe the German Gov. would intervene to save the company if needed.

@ Lad regarding the video clip of burning the carbon/oil out:
Wrong on so many counts. First, 99.9999% of the crud that went thru that intake was burned up and treated. Second, thats from a 2005 TDI which has always been in compliance. Third, ALL repair shops of diesel and gassers do all kinds of dirty jobs and they dump stuff. Forth, any older diesel truck you see on the road is causing thousands of times more pollution than new diesels ever will. Also any boat, any lawnmower.
You are very VERY correct, however, that VW dealers and VW corporate has been lying about the costly repairs to the EGR systems in the VW TDI EA189 engine. The EGR low pressure system will routinely clog until it hurts performance, and then you’re looking at a very expensive repair. Then it will happen to the same engine again, and again, and again.
I know this because I own one of the affected cars, and I’ve gone to both ends of the internet to try to extricate my car from this mess.

By treated I mean burned in the engine… sorry for confusion

Uninspiring testimony in in today's US congressional subcommittee hearing. Questions were alternatingly clueless and relentless. Answers were neither swift nor clarifying, except that lawmakers were told that VW leadership has absolutely no idea what goes on in the workshop and that the dirty deeds were committed only by a couple of unnamed low level German engineers whose identity is protected by German law. US Rep Chris Collins found that answer not credible and said so rather strenuously.

Maybe some clues are contained in the boxes hauled off from VW headquarters by German authorities this morning.

3.6 million of the 11 million affected cars will require hardware updates in addition to software updates as part of the recall. The hardware update is thought to include installation of urea injection and/or upgraded catalytic converters. Cars with the 1.6 litre engine are thought to require hardware updates.

http://www.autocar.co.uk/car-news/industry/vw-emissions-scandal-hardware-fix-needed-36m-vehicles

"Volkswagen told German regulators the parts for 1.6-liter engines that need the fix won’t be available until September 2016"

Recalls to begin in January 2016.

Also, with respect to the question of how much the software-only fix might affect real-world fuel economy, data are available from UK consumer reported real-world mpg for VW Golfs powered by the old (EA189) and more modern (with compliant software) 2 litre diesel engines. The updated engines give about 8 mpg less than the previous version, despite the newer golf weighing up to 100 kg less than the older one.

http://www.honestjohn.co.uk/realmpg/volkswagen/golf-vi-2009
http://www.honestjohn.co.uk/realmpg/volkswagen/golf-vii-2013

I don't think people are going to want to come in for their recall.

Thought maybe you would like to see how dirty the so called clean VW diesel engine really is

I had much the same carbon deposits in the intake of my 1994 Taurus SHO (port-injected gasoline).  TDIs do not have a monopoly on carbon deposits in the EGR system; far from it.

lawmakers were told that VW leadership has absolutely no idea what goes on in the workshop and that the dirty deeds were committed only by a couple of unnamed low level German engineers whose identity is protected by German law.

What did I tell you?

I don't think people are going to want to come in for their recall.

Yup.

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