The Volkswagen Group in June reached a settlement with the EPA and numerous other regulators to resolve civil claims over the automaker’s diesel emission cheating scandal, which erupted in September 2015 with the discovery of numerous VW Group vehicles whose diesel engines were fitted with “defeat device” software to help hide their true emissions from regulators.
The settlement included a multi-billion-dollar buyback program for approximately 470,000 cars in the United States fitted with 2.0-liter diesel engines. The cars include a handful of VW models as well as Audi’s A3.
On Tuesday, U.S. District Judge Charles R. Breyer finally approved the settlement which includes a $10.033 billion buyback program and an additional $4.7 billion program to offset excess emissions and promote zero-emissions vehicles.
The buyback program will provide owners of the affected vehicles with a pre-scandal trade in value for their particular model, as well as a figure between $5,100 and $10,000 in additional compensation. The other program will see the VW Group pay $2.7 billion over three years into an environmental trust, managed by the court, to remediate excess nitrogen oxide emissions from the diesel vehicles, as well as an additional $2.0 billion over 10 years to promote zero-emissions vehicles, namely electric cars.
2014 Volkswagen Touareg TDI
The settlement doesn’t resolve the issue of VW Group vehicles fitted with 3.0-liter diesel engines, which mostly affects vehicles from Audi but also the VW Touareg and Porsche Cayenne. There are around 85,000 vehicles with the 3.0-liter engine in the U.S. The VW Group is continuing to reach a settlement after an initial proposal was rejected by regulators in July.
So far, the VW Group has agreed to pay as much as $16.5 billion in connection with the scandal, including payments to dealers, states and attorneys for owners. The figure will rise as the VW Group still has to reach settlements with owners of cars with the 3.0-liter diesel engines, as well as with the Justice Department for violating clean air laws, and with at least 16 states for various other lawsuits.
Below is a list of the diesel vehicles included in the approved settlement:
2013-2015 Volkswagen Beetle
2010-2015 Volkswagen Golf
2009-2015 Volkswagen Jetta
2012-2015 Volkswagen Passat
2010-2013 and 2015 Audi A3