British Prime Minister David Cameron has publicly condemned Volkswagen AG for cheating on diesel emissions tests and refused to state if the country would follow Switzerland and ban the purchase of affected diesel vehicles from the company.
The U.K.’s Department for Transport is currently retesting vehicles and probing the regulatory “door” that allowed the German manufacturer to use so-called “defeat” devices – actually software – to rig emissions readings, announced in a recent statement. “If companies are breaking the rules and fiddling their figures that is unacceptable, ” commented Cameron on Sunday as he went to New York for a visit to the United Nations. “Emissions standards matter and they have to be properly policed and delivered.” He added that any sales interdiction would come from the Transport Department. Around 11 million vehicles around the world have been equipped with the software said the company – and around half a million and 2.8 million were found by regulators in the US and Germany.
The company has seen its long-running CEO Martin Winterkorn replaced by Porsche unit head Matthias Mueller, which has pledged a swift resolve to the crisis as the shares collapsed and wiped out about a third of the group’s market value. The company has already set aside 6.5 billion euros ($7.3 billion) to cover related costs including repairs, as well as regulatory penalties and lawsuits. German regulators have already ordered VW to deliver an estimated fix timeline for vehicles to meet the specified emission standards by no later than October 7.