VW says fix for 'cheat' devices won't hit fuel consumption

VW Image copyright Getty Images

VW's UK boss said the "fix" devised to clean up 1.2 million vehicles in the UK would not affect fuel consumption.

Paul Willis also told MPs on the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Committee that there would be "no difference in driveability".

But VW has yet to explain how the fix can be made without affecting the performance of its cars. It's a question many people asking.

He also confirmed that UK owners of affected cars would not be compensated.

Mr Willis there was no evidence that the emissions scandal would hit the resale value of affected cars.

And because there was no loss, UK owners would not need compensating, he said.

"When there is no loss then there is no need for compensation," Mr Willis said.

That stance was in sharp contrast with the US, where drivers of affected cars are being offered vouchers worth $1,000 for their trouble.

VW's use of computer software in diesel cars, which gave a false emissions reading when they were being tested by regulators, was exposed in the US last year.

VW plans to start fixing cars in the UK from March, with customers being told it should take less than an hour.

Mr Willis also told MPs that it will take another six months before the report by US law firm Jones Day into the emissions scandal was completed.

However, an update will be issued at the end of March.

Image caption Paul Willis

US hurdles

The German company is finding the going more difficult in the US, where the scandal first erupted.

On Tuesday, US regulators rejected VW's latest recall plans.

The California Air Resources Board said the proposals did "not adequately address overall impacts on vehicle performance, emissions and safety". The board also said the proposed fix was not fast enough.

Volkswagen chief executive Matthias Mueller was due to meet with the head of the Environmental Protection Agency on Wednesday to discuss a remedy plan acceptable to regulators.

He is in the US for the first time since the scandal erupted in September to attend the Detroit motor show.

VW has admitted using what is known as a "defeat device" in 11 million cars and vans globally. It is a piece of software capable of cheating emissions tests to make the car appear more environmentally friendly when being tested in a laboratory.

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