Internal documents have confirmed that former Volkswagen CEO Martin Winterkorn (and other executives) knew that millions of diesel vehicles had been fitted with software designed to cheat pollution emission limits for at least a year before it was disclosed by the US EPA. (Now give back the bonuses you collected for the deceit and get out your cheque book for legal damages re the environmental harm and health problems your fraud compounded in the process).
German prosecutors are investigating whether Winterkorn breached securities’ laws in waiting too long to disclose this critical information to the public and shareholders. The good news is that disruption in the c-suite, slumping sales and soaring costs to resolve the scandal, have finally prompted VW to evolve. See, VW plans 30 electric vehicle models after sales battered by diesel scandal:
German car-maker Volkswagen has responded to a slump in sales following e emissions-cheating scandal over its diesel engines by announcing plans to spend more than $11 billion and launch 30 all-electric models, including autonomous and ride-sharing vehicles.
Matthias Mueller, the CEO of Europe’s biggest carmaker said huge investments would be needed as the firm moves beyond the “dieselgate” scandal – an event that is widely considered to represent the beginning of the end of diesel engines, and quite possibly the internal combustion engine.