I have been trying to avoid it but I guess we have to go there…. The VW emissions scandal affects hundreds of thousands of people in other countries as well as here. What I don’t understand is how on earth such an iconic company can just choose to flush themselves down the toilet like this.
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Which vehicles are affected?
Volkswagen Group has announced that 1.2m cars and commercial vehicles will be recalled in the UK as a result of the diesel engine emissions scandal.
Volkswagen – 508,276
Audi – 393,450
Seat – 76,773
Škoda – 131,569
Volkswagen cars and other commercial vehicles – 79,838
Which engines are involved?
Anyone with a EA189 engine, which to most buyers means 1.2 litre, 1.6 litre and 2.0 litre diesel engines. The affected vehicles were sold between roughly 2009 and 2014. This include Golfs, Passats, Škoda Octavias and Fabias, plus a host of Audis.
What about other models?
All petrol models, as well as V6 TDI and V8 TDI diesel engined vehicles, are unaffected.
I have got one of those cars – what happens next?
The VW Group is giving few details on how and when this will happen, except to say it is working behind the scenes on which owners need to be told. Recalls are managed by the government’s Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency. VW will be contacting DVSA with a list of cars that are affected. DVSA then identifies each car’s registered keeper and will write to them. It does so on VW’s behalf because many of the affected cars will have been bought second hand, or are leased.
When can I expect a letter?
Again, VW isn’t saying, but previously large recalls of this type have taken the DVSA six weeks to start producing letters. The agency has just managed a major recall of other cars prompted by air bag problems. In that instance, it took six weeks before the first letters were sent out. Expect the same now from VW.
Is my car safe to drive in the meantime?
Yes. VW says all the affected vehicles remain technically safe and roadworthy. It is only the car’s emissions that are affected.
What is the likely work, and how long will it take?
VW remains tight-lipped. All it would say is that it aims to “present technical solutions and measures to relevant responsible authorities” before the end of October. The Guardian understands that vehicles will most likely require a software upgrade, in which case the car will only be off the road for a matter of hours. But if more serious work is required, it would likely to be at least a day, possibly longer. Given that 1.2m cars have been recalled across the group, this is likely to take many months – well into 2016 – to resolve.
Will I get a replacement car while mine is being worked on?
The Consumer group Which? says drivers should be entitled to one. However, the huge number of recalls may make that next to impossible – but if you need one, you should demand one.
What will be the likely impact of the work?
VW will desperately be hoping that the affected cars will continue to perform as drivers expect after the upgrade work is carried out. However, if the car performance, emissions or fuel consumption deteriorates substantially, lawyers will be queuing up to bring claims against the manufacturer.
I’ve just bought a new VW Group car. Is that affected?
No. Cars with the latest Euro 6 engines – those typically bought in 2015 – are not thought to be affected.