June 24, 2016 — Volkswagen will pay up to $7,000 and offer to buy back or fix about 500,000 TDI “Clean Diesel” vehicles as part of a $10 billion settlement for rigging the cars to cheat on emissions tests.
Bloomberg said an anonymous source involved in the settlement said VW will pay the fair-market value of the cars before the scandal broke in September 2015, plus $1,000 to $7,000 in compensation depending on factors like the age of the car.
Any repairs must wait until VW get approval from the EPA or other air-pollution regulatory agencies, and no one knows how long it will be.
In the meantime, the company is funding a program to offset environmental pollution and promote zero-emissions vehicles.
About 11 million TDI diesels were sold worldwide, including 482,000 in the United States, with illegal software designed to cheat on emissions tests. It could sense when the car was being tested and temporarily reduce emission to meet federal limits on nitrogen oxides (NOx).
On the road, the cars emit up to 40-times the acceptable level of NOx, a pollutant that causes smog and serious respiratory illnesses.
According to Reuters, the $10 billion deal does not include compensation for owners of about 80,000 Audi, Porsche, and VW vehicles with 3.0 liter engines. These vehicles emitted less pollution than 2.0 liter TDI diesels included in the settlement.