It may be one of the most luxurious sports car brands in the world, but this doesn’t mean Porsche is immune to the Dieselgate scandal that has plagued the global automobile industry for years.
In the summer of 2022, Volkswagen AG, Porsche’s parent company, settled an agreement with US authorities and customers affected by defeat devices. The $80 million (approximately £65.49 million) settlement will cover approximately 500,000 Porsche diesel vehicles that were manufactured between the years 2005 and 2020.
In addition to the settlement amount, Porsche and Volkswagen AG are also expected to pay around $24.5 million (approximately £20.06 million) for legal fees and related costs. Earlier reports revealed that each affected driver can receive around $250 to $1,109 (approximately £204.71 to £908.08).
Before affected car owners can get compensation, each one of them should have had their vehicle returned so that new software that follows emissions regulations can be installed.
To date, Volkswagen AG has spent over $20 billion (approximately £16.38 billion) on various fines, fees, and compensation.
Porsche Fined In Germany
Meanwhile, in Germany, the government handed Porsche a $600 million (approximately £491.29 million) fine for the alleged use of cheating software intended to manipulate emissions tests. The prosecutor’s office in Stuttgart said that the carmaker was negligent and breached German emissions laws.
The amount was based on how much profit the carmaker made. Porsche recorded an 18% profit per vehicle at the time prosecutors were finalising their case. This profit, which is twice Audi’s earnings, is one of the highest in the automobile industry.
Several of Porsche’s former executives are involved in criminal investigations and the fine does not, in any way, acquit them from their cases. The carmaker’s former R&D chief Wolfgang Hatz was arrested in 2017. While his case is currently being investigated, he was released after paying a bond worth $3.5 million (approximately £2.87 million).
No more Porsche diesels
Porsche recently announced that it would stop making diesel vehicles. This is a major step for the company since their Macan, Panamera, and Cayenne models have been equipped with VW’s 3.0-litre turbo diesel V6 engines for years. The decision came after numerous observations that more customers are now shifting to hybrids.
The carmaker has completely taken out the Macan and Panamera models from their official vehicle lineup.
Porsche and the Dieselgate scandal
In 2018, the KBA (German Federal Motor Transport Authority) ordered Porsche to recall around 60,000 diesel-powered vehicles, specifically the Macan and Cayenne models. This developed after authorities conducted several tests that indicated excess emissions from several diesel vehicles when driven on real roads despite reflecting reduced emissions during testing. Authorities attributed this to a warm-up technique the vehicles allegedly used while in the lab.
The device Porsche used is similar to what the Volkswagen Group installed in Volkswagen and Audi diesel vehicles in September 2015. Known as defeat devices, the device senses when a vehicle is about to be tested and they immediately bring down emissions to legal levels that the World Health Organization mandated.
With reduced emissions, the vehicle appears safe to regulators even though it emits excessive amounts of a pollutant known as nitrogen oxide or NOx. This gas is dangerous and can trigger life-changing health effects.
Some of the common (but life-threatening) impacts of NOx emissions include asthma, COPD or Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease, cancer, and cardiovascular diseases. Nitrogen oxides have also been linked to thousands of premature deaths, including the first such case in the UK – the death of a young girl named Ella Adoo-Kissi-Debrah in 2013.
Porsche – and the VW Group – misled their customers into believing the vehicles sold were high-performing and emissions-compliant. They lied to car owners and gave more value to profit than their customers’ health and safety.
Authorities ordered Porsche to recall all affected vehicles. Fines were also set in place.
Years earlier, in 2015, the Volkswagen Group also had to recall hundreds of thousands of affected vehicles and pay fines. This incident, which eventually involved many other carmakers, became known as the Dieselgate scandal.
The diesel emissions fiasco is considered one of the biggest and most controversial scams to ever happen to the global automobile industry. It does not involve only the Volkswagen Group and Porsche but many other carmakers as well.
Like VW and Porsche, Mercedes-Benz, BMW, Renault, and Vauxhall have also been fined and subjected to vehicle recalls because of the alleged use of illegal defeat devices.
While the Volkswagen Group, Porsche, and Mercedes-Benz have entered into and settled agreements with affected drivers and involved authorities, other carmakers have yet to follow their lead. Law firms and car owners are hoping that another carmaker, BMW, will be the next to enter into a settlement. A Vauxhall emissions claim for each Vauxhall customer should be a possibility as well.
What is my diesel claim all about?
As a result of the carmakers’ illegal actions, drivers have been exposed to NOx emissions. This, and the lies they perpetuated, should be the subject of a diesel claim case from every affected driver. A successful emissions claim will reward you with compensation equivalent to the gravity of your case.
However, before filing an emissions claim, it is important to verify first if you are eligible to receive compensation. You can do this by visiting Emissions.co.uk as they have all the details you need to push through with the case.