There’s trouble in Volkswagen paradise as Porsche begins litigation against its sister-brand Audi, alleging that the auto manufacturer’s role in the Dieselgate scandal has cost the luxury automaker upwards of $234 million, Reuters reports.
In 2015, Volkswagen group admitted fault in manipulating emission tests with illegal emission-cheating software baked into its diesel-powered vehicles sold through the United States and Europe after a group of researchers exposed irregularities in testing to the California Air Resources Board. Shortly after, more and more manufacturers became subject of different sub-investigations to determine if any of the vehicles produced by the companies included a similar software-based defeat.
Volkswagen was forced to recall and buy back affected cars in the United States not long after, ultimately resulting in a total global cost of $15 billion. Earlier this year, the first batch of recalled cars left to rot were finally repaired and certified for resale by the EPA. In profits recently posted by Volkswagen, sales numbers are finally rebounding for the automaker.
The majority of German automakers, including BMW, Mercedes, and the Volkswagen Group (which consists of Audi, Porsche, and Volkswagen brands), became part of an ongoing investigation by the European Union after the regulatory body was tipped off that the manufacturers were part of a “cartel-style” coalition. The allegations were that the brands conspired to “fix” the design and price of diesel engines and their emission components, something which some manufacturers quickly responded to and categorically denied.
Later reports indicated that Audi may have known about the illegal emission cheating software as early as 2006, yet did nothing to rectify the problems until the matter became public and Dieselgate was in full force. Once it began rolling, it couldn’t be stopped in the United States or in Europe. Earlier this year, German officials mandated a recall of the diesel-powered Porsche Cayenne after German Transport Minister Alexander Dobrindt stated that he would be revoking the emission certification for the Cayennes until Porsche could bring them into legal compliance.
Unnamed sources told German news outlet Bild that Porsche is seeking compensation for the cost of retrofits, as well as legal counsel required to settle the matter. When asked to elaborate on the matter, Audi declined to comment on the matter and referred any questions to Porsche.