The huge Volkswagen Group scandal is far from being over as it will have serious repercussions on the German automotive conglomerate. After former CEO Martin Winterkorn was replaced by Matthias Müller, now we are hearing that further management changes are being planned as a new report indicates the research & development bosses from Volkswagen, Audi and Porsche have all been suspended.
This means Heinz-Jakob Neusser from the Volkswagen core brand, along with Ulrich Hackenberg from Audi and Porsche's Wolfgang Hatz are suspended until further notice and can’t do their jobs anymore within the VAG empire. It’s important to mention that all three have denied any implications in the illegal maneuvers of diesel engines featuring a special software developed to cheat during emissions tests.
Volkswagen has admitted there are no less than 11 million diesel cars from VAG sold all over the world with this so-called “defeat device”, with 5 million cars from Volkswagen, 2.1 million from Audi and 1.2 million from Skoda. At the moment of writing, SEAT hasn’t specified how many of their cars have this software, but we should expect to hear an announcement very soon. It’s not known at this point whether there are any Porsche cars involved in this scandal as it remains to be established if the 3.0-liter TDI V6 also has this software gimmick.
The Volkswagen Group is facing some difficult times ahead as they are about to receive record fines for using the illegal software which was developed by Bosch only for testing purposes, but apparently VW decided to use it on production cars, even though Bosch and even a VW engineer warned the company’s bosses several years ago that implementing the defeat device is not legal.
Sales of many TDI-powered cars have already been blocked in a lot of European countries and obviously Volkswagen’s profits will be greatly affected since people are now more reluctant when it comes down to buying cars equipped with a turbodiesel engine.