Things may be starting to go from bad to worse for Volkswagen.
Volkswagen is in full-on scramble mode to contain the gigantic scandal that places its entire company at risk — and a deadline is fast approaching that many think VW can’t meet.
Volkswagen must finalize a fix for nearly 600,000 cars in the United States that were equipped with software designed to cheat tests, and industry experts doubt that they can pull it off, according to a Financial Times report.
VW, Europe’s largest automaker, was engulfed in scandal last year when they admitted that its diesel-powered cars were equipped with devices that understated pollution in tests. U.S. officials uncovered the scandal, and now the company faces huge fines and must fix hundreds of thousands of cars that exceed nitrogen oxide emission limits by up to 40 times.
Originally, the deadline was March 24 for VW to get them up to code, but it was extended to April 21 due to a number of issues.
VW has set aside a whopping 6.7 billion euros to cover the cost of fixing the cars, but it could face many billions of dollars in fines and lawsuits. The scandal could cost VW up to 38 billion euros, analysts say according to the report.
“On behalf of our company, and my colleagues in Germany, I would like to offer a sincere apology for Volkswagen’s use of a software program that served to defeat the regular emissions testing regime,” Michael Horn, president and CEO of Volkswagen Group of America, testified before Congress in October 2015. “In the spring of 2014 when the West Virginia University study was published, I was told that there was a possible emissions non-compliance that could be remedied. I was informed that EPA regulations included various penalties for non-compliance with the emissions standards and that the agencies can conduct engineering tests which could include ‘defeat device’ testing or analysis. I was also informed that the company engineers would work with the agencies to resolve the issue. Later in 2014, I was informed that the technical teams had a specific plan for remedies to bring the vehicles into compliance and that they were engaged with the agencies about the process.”