American buyers of German Volkswagen cars received over $ 9.8 billion as compensation in the case of the so-called «Dieselgate» — the concern’s tampering with harmful gases emitted by the manufacturer’s diesel engine.
Volkswagen fraud was revealed in September 2015, when it turned out that more than 11 million diesel cars of the company around the world were equipped with software that underestimated by dozens of times harmful gases amount released into the air during tests. The testing included modes and devices inactive during normal use. The company acknowledged that it had underestimated emissions level during vehicles sales in the US and Europe.
As a result of that scandal the company’s shares fell significantly, and VW sales fell sharply at the end of 2015 (by 5.2% in December). While over the previous 13 years the company had shown growth in sales.
Dieselgate was the reason for resignation of Martin Winterkorn, auto concern chairman. Heinz-Jakob Neusser, head of R&D Volkswagen, Ulrich Hackenberg, responsible for the technical development of Audi brand and Wolfgang Hatz, head of R&D at Porsche, were also forced to leave the company. The last two were also reported to have come up with the idea of tricks around the emission levels.
And even Renault?!
In the midst of «Dieselgate» representatives of European Federation for Transport & Environment, which deals with monitoring the impact of transport on the environment, said that other manufacturers also underestimate emissions data — Renault’s European offices were sought through in January 2016. No evidence of falsification was found, but the French, just in case, announced a preventive recall of 15 thousand cars to check and refine the exhaust gas neutralization systems.