London mayor Sadiq Khan issues £2.5m VW congestion charge call

Volkswagen car Image copyright AFP/Getty Images
Image caption There are 500,000 cars with VW engines registered in London, 80,000 of which were fitted with the "defeat devices"

The mayor of London has claimed Volkswagen should pay £2.5m for missed congestion charge payments following the emissions-rigging scandal.

Sadiq Khan said 80,000 VW engines fitted with "defeat devices" were registered in London.

The devices, which detect when an engine is being tested, changed performance to improve results.

VW, the biggest carmaker in the world, admitted about 11 million cars worldwide were fitted with the device.

Transport for London calculated the £2.5m figure from the number of owners of affected VW vehicles claiming a discount for which they were not entitled.

"If you don't ask you don't get. I'm a champion for clean air, I'm a champion for London," said Mr Khan.

Volkswagen scandal

11 million

Vehicles affected worldwide

  • €6.5bn Set aside by VW

  • $18bn Potential fines

  • No. 1 Global carmaker in sales

"Londoners, in good faith, bought these vehicles. They weren't clean. We've lost revenues from the congestion charge, they've got a case to answer."

The cars affected include Audi A1 and A3, Skoda Fabia and Octavia, Seat Ibiza and Leon and VW's Golf and Polo vehicles.

In a statement to the Sunday Times, VW said: "Volkswagen products perform well in independent real-world emissions testing against new cars in general.

"It is therefore difficult to understand why our products might be singled out for pollution penalties."

The scandal was exposed last September when America's Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) found many VW cars with diesel engines being sold in the States had software that could detect when they were being tested, changing the performance accordingly to improve results.

The German car giant has since admitted cheating emissions tests in the US.

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