The Guardian view on the VW crisis: the planet should be afraid | Editorial

It was American, not European, regulators who caught Volkswagen out. If the mis-measurement of pollution is so easily contrived, there will be political as well as commercial imperatives to distort

Like the slowly stewed frog, the world has grown steadily used to the banditry of its banks. The remorseless drip of revelations about laundering, rate-fixing and mis-selling have built up too slowly to provoke a violent reaction, but they have seared a distinction in the public mind – that between despised and predatory finance on the one hand and, on the other, more reputable lines of business that make real things.

This is the backdrop against which an esteemed global manufacturer, and emblem of Germany’s purposefully productive capitalism, has been caught doing something that would make the most shameless banker blush. Volkswagen has been applying the technical acumen for which it is so admired to the task of tripping up the American regulators that are tasked with protecting the air that citizens breathe.

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VW chief Martin Winterkorn defiant over emissions cheating scandal

German carmaker’s chief executive apologises in face of international uproar but refuses to resign

Volkswagen has admitted that 11 million of its cars worldwide were designed to cheat emissions testing, in an escalating scandal that has loaded pressure on the wider motor industry.

Campaigners have long claimed engine emissions figures under laboratory tests are far exceeded in real-life conditions, and experts have said thousands of premature deaths could be averted by ensuring cars meet their legal limits.

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VW scandal caused nearly 1m tonnes of extra pollution, analysis shows

• Emissions could have far greater impact in Europe, where almost half passenger cars are diesel, than the US

• Company bosses to meet on Wednesday to decide response to emissions-rigging scandal

Volkswagen’s rigging of emissions tests for 11m cars means they may be responsible for nearly 1m tonnes of air pollution every year, roughly the same as the UK’s combined emissions for all power stations, vehicles, industry and agriculture, a Guardian analysis suggests.

The potential scale of the scandal puts further pressure on Volkswagen’s board and its chief executive, Martin Winterkorn. The company’s executive committee plans to meet on Wednesday to discuss the affair and to agree the agenda of a full board meeting scheduled for Friday, amid reports that Winterkorn could be replaced.

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VW scandal: chief executive Martin Winterkorn refuses to quit

• 11m vehicles worldwide involved
• Exec says Volkswagen ‘totally screwed up’
• VW denies reports CEO Martin Winterkorn will quit
•Company sets aside €6.5bn for costs

The defiant boss of Volkswagen has refused to resign despite an escalation of the the emissions scandal following the admission by the world’s second largest car marker that 11m vehicles worldwide have been fitted with a defeat device designed to cheat emissions tests.

Martin Winterkorn appeared in a video to insist he was “endless sorry” for the events at the end of a day in which VW was forced to deny a report in Germany that he will leave as chief executive this Friday, to be replaced by Matthias Müller, the chairman of its sister company Porsche.

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‘We totally screwed up’, says US Volkswagen chief – video

The head of Volkswagen America, Michael Horn, says at a promotional event in New York on Monday that the carmaker was dishonest with US emission regulators and the public after manipulating engine software to falsify emisisons data. Shares in Volkswagen fell by almost a fifth on Monday after the carmaker issued a public apology

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AA warns insurance tax will increase ‘churn’ as it suffers £63.6m loss

Motor insurance firm – hit by the refinancing of expensive debt – also reports dip in half-year revenues but insists plans to overhaul business are on track

The AA has slid to a near-£64m loss and said that the government’s increase in insurance premium tax would increase “churn” among its customers – the number of policyholders shopping around and switching to rival insurers.

The insurance and roadside assistance group also reported a dip in revenues for the six months to 31 July, but Bob Mackenzie, its executive chairman, insisted plans to overhaul the business were on track. It came as shares in AA, which floated last year at 250p, fell by nearly 8% to 307p in early trading on Tuesday.

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VW scandal: what the emissions revelations mean

The revelations about the carmaker’s rigging of emissions data in the US could have serious repercussions around the world – and not just for Volkswagen

The US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) said on Friday that Volkswagen had installed illegal software to cheat emission tests, allowing its diesel cars to produce up to 40 times more pollution than allowed. The US government has ordered VW to recall 482,000 VW and Audi cars produced since 2009.

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Volkswagen scandal: US chief says carmaker ‘totally screwed up’

Michael Horn admits carmaker was dishonest with US regulators as emissions-fixing scandal could extend to other companies and countries

The US chief executive of Volkswagen has said the company has “totally screwed up” over the emissions scandal that has rocked the automotive industry.

Michael Horn admitted at an event in Brooklyn, New York, on Monday night that VW had been “dishonest” with regulators and the public.

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VW emissions scandal could snare other firms, whistleblower claims

Billions wiped off value of industry heavyweights as Congress confirms it is investigatingThe emissions-fixing scandal that has engulfed Volkswagen in the US could extend to other companies and countries, one of the officials involved in uncovering the…

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German minister tells Volkswagen to clear up emissions scandal

Economy minister says US claims over falsified data threaten reputation of German car industry

The German government has warned that the Volkswagen emissions fixing scandal is putting at risk the reputation of the country’s automotive industry, as shares in Europe’s largest carmaker slumped by nearly 20%.

Shares plunged as investors responded to US accusations that the German carmaker falsified emissions data, an action that could attract penalties of up to $18bn (£11.6bn). The German economy minister, Sigmar Gabriel, expressed concern over the impact of what he called “a bad case” for the country’s vital car industry and he urged VW to clear up the allegations.

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