Volkswagen has been caught redhanded in their diesel emission cheating software, and as a result are facing stiff fines. The U.S. justice department have filed suit, back in January, for $46 billion for Volkswagen knowingly doing this to 600,000 cars and violating U.S. environmental laws. Now a deal has been reached between Volkswagen AG and US officials to fix all of the cars that are emitting up to 40 times the legal pollution limit.
Volkswagen is expected to buy back up to 500,000 2.0 liter diesel cars that were sold in the United States, according to Reuters.
That would include versions of the Jetta sedan, the Golf compact and the Audi A3 sold since 2009. The buyback offer does not apply to the bigger, 80,000 3.0-liter diesel vehicles also found to have exceeded U.S. pollution limits, including Audi and Porsche SUV models, the people said.
As part of the settlement with U.S. authorities including the Environmental Protection Agency, Volkswagen has also agreed to a compensation fund for owners, a third person briefed on the terms said.
The compensation fund is expected to represent more than $1 billion on top of the cost of buying back the vehicles, but it is not clear how much each owner might receive, the person said.
VW will pay cash compensation to owners who either sell their vehicles back or get them fixed, one of the people briefed on the matter said. Owners selling back their vehicles will get an additional cash payment on top of receiving the estimated value of the vehicles from before the emissions scandal became public in September 2015.
According to the deal, diesel owners will have up to two years to decide whether to sell back the car or to get them repaired. The bottom line is the U.S. government wants the affected vehicles to be pulled off the road.
U.S. District Judge Charles Breyer in March gave VW until Thursday “to announce a concrete proposal for getting the polluting vehicles off the road.”
Breyer said in March the “proposal may include a vehicle buy-back plan or a fix approved by the relevant regulators that allows the cars to remain on the road with certain modifications.”
Germany’s Die Welt newspaper also reported recently that as part of the framework deal Volkswagen would be paying each affected customer $5,000. However, this amount has not been confirmed.