German car group Volkswagen has said it will call back all 11 million diesel-powered cars that may have the emission manipulation software, its new CEO Matthias Müller said. In the meantime, an increasing number of countries has halted the sale of the illustrious cars.
Cars of all brands of the group recalled...
Volkswagen will recall 11 million diesel-powered cars, equipped with the software to manipulate emissions, and give them new software. Every diesel that was manufactured between 2009 and 2015 will be recalled: 5 million Volkswagen cars, 1.8 million Volkswagen company cars, 2.1 million Audi cars, 1.2 million Skoda cars and another million Seat cars. Müller divulged his plan yesterday, at the company's main office in Wolfsburg, to about 1,000 of its top-ranking managers.
The new CEO transferred from Porsche to lead the German car company, after previous Volkswagen CEO Martin Winterkorn had to resign shortly after "dieselgate" broke loose. Winterkorn may face a torrid time as the German public Prosecution Service has launched an investigation into him and his company.
... including 7,300 in Belgium and the Netherlands
Belgium's Volkswagen importer, D'Ieteren, said it had set aside two million euro to alter current orders to the new Euro 6 regulations. For all brands together (Volkswagen, Audi, Skoda and Seat), it consists of some 800 cars that still have to be delivered and registered. Those that have been registered but not delivered, will be part of the call-back. D'Ieteren has also halted all sales of the cars containing the software. All in all, including showroom models, some 3,200 cars were waiting for a new owner.
Dutch importer Pon also decided to halt sales: a spokesperson said some 4,100 "suspicious" cars are still located at Dutch dealers. Meanwhile, Swiss and Italians importers have also made similar decisions.
It has also become clear that the government of the Flemish region will bring a civil action to Volkswagen because of its manipulation of emissions. The national government is however more cautious: vice-prime minister Kris Peeters stated that "We have to be very aware of the fact that the Volkswagen group employs 8,600 people in Belgium: 4,000 in its dealer network, 1,600 at D'Ieteren and 3,000 at Audi Vorst."