Volkswagen, the best selling foreign automaker in the world’s largest auto market, has been hit with nationwide protests in China because of the way it handled the recall to resolve a probable suspension issue.
The German automaker has recalled in its largest market a total of 581,090 New Sagitar and Beetle cars because the rear torsion crank axle needs to be affixed with metal plates, which would in turn improve stability and emit warning noises if cracks appear. According to Soh Weiming, Volkswagen China’s executive president, the rear axle is actually safe and the metal inlays would serve as “providing a double assurance.”
Unconvinced owners staged wide protests at Volkswagen dealerships in major Chinese cities such as Shanghai and Shenzhen, some of them condemning the carmaker for being “unconscionable” and others having flyers that showed they fear driving their cars. According to a poster that was run through Tencent’s QQ social-media service also called on Sagitar buyers to unite in an even wider protest on Novemebr 9 that would be held in 100 cities.
“It’s like a ticking time bomb,” comments Dai Dushi, a 36-year-old businessman that participated in the protests. The discontent clients want the German automaker to replace the rear suspension or refund buyers. VW on the other hand says driving is safe and only in rare cases following a rear-side or rear-end accident the rear torsion crank axle could bend or break.