On September 18, 2015, the United States Environmental Protection Agency mandated Volkswagen to recall several hundred thousand diesel engine vehicles in the United States. These passenger vehicles were sold in the US since 2008 under the Volkswagen and Audi (owned by VW) brands.
Cars subject to the recall are:
- VW Jetta (model years 2009-15)
- VW Beetle (model years 2009-15)
- Audi A3 (model years 2009-15)
- VW Golf (model years 2009-15)
- VW Passat (model years 2014-15)
Volkswagen modified the software programming of these vehicles to detect when they were undergoing official emissions testing. When the vehicles’ computers detected testing conditions, they then turned on their full emission control systems. The full emission control system functionality in these cars then turned off during normal driving situations, resulting in significantly higher levels of pollutants in violation of U.S. clean air laws.
Consumers of the recalled Volkswagen and Audi diesel vehicles site a major reason for purchasing these cars was the thought they were making an environmentally-sound decision, since the autos were marketed as highly fuel efficiency, with low-emitting levels of smog-causing pollutants. Volkswagen had advertised these vehicles with slogans such as, “this ain’t your daddy’s diesel, stinky, smoky, and sluggish.” These advertised features — great fuel efficiency and low pollution — are now in serious doubt. The cars have potentially significantly reduced resale or trade-in value.
The EPA notice states that the recalled Volkswagen and Audi diesels spew up to forty times (40x) the national standard for nitrogen oxide. Diesel engines emit more nitrogen oxide than gasoline engines. Nitrogen oxide is medically associated with asthma and lung illnesses.
Volkswagen has not disclosed its plans to fix the issue in the cars. It is speculated that VW will most likely reprogram the onboard computers to restore the full emissions control systems during all driving conditions. However, experts believe this possible fix will necessarily reduce the performance of the vehicles.
Contact Shamberg Johnson & Bergman
If you purchased or leased a 2009-2015 model year diesel Volkswagen Jetta, Beetle, Golf or 2014-2015 diesel Passat, or a 2009-2015 diesel Audi A3, contact Shamberg Johnson & Bergman. We will confidentially review your claim for free and help you determine whether you might be due compensation from Volkswagen.