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A Volkswagen engineer has admitted and pleaded guilty in a US court to helping to trick it's customers and the US government for almost 10 years by installing "defeat devices" in Volkswagen vehicles that would reduce the emissions when being tested for them.

When on the road, however, Volkswagen diesel vehicles would produce much higher emissions than are allowed.

According to the engineer, he worked on the new "EA 189 diesel engine". However, later on he realised that the engine could in no way meet the US environmental standards.

To fight the problem, the engineers designed a "defeat device" and "defeat software" that was engaged, when testing for emissions.

US prosecutors say that "as part of the certification process for each new model year, including model years 2009 through 2016, the co-conspirators continued to falsely and fraudulently certify to EPA and CARB that VW diesel vehicles met US emissions standards and complied with the Clean Air Act"

"Liang admitted that during this time, he and his co-conspirators knew that VW marketed its diesel vehicles to the U.S. public as "clean diesel" and environmentally-friendly, and promoted the increased fuel economy."
The engineer can face up to 5 years in prison for conspiring, however, by working with the US governent, he can potentionally reduce his sentence.
Audi has signed a memurandum of understanding between three very sucessful and important tech companies in China - Alibaba Group Holding Ltd, Baidu Inc and Tencent Holdings Ltd.

According to Audi, the agreement will help to enhance the development of connected cars in Audi's newest regional market, especially in the area of internet-vehicle platforms, data analysis and intelligent urban transport.

Alibaba and Audi are already in a cooperation to integrate real-time traffic data and high resolution 3D map systems. Next year will be the year of Audi launching Baidu CarLife apps in the local models.

Tencent currently work on the integration of WeChat MyCar services into Audi, focusing on the location sharing and music sharing features first.

Joachim Wedler, the president of Audi China, also said that "China has become an important leading market for digital technologies. Baidu, Alibaba and Tencent are strong innovators. We are determined to work with them on features for the connected car of the future".

Despite this, an Audi spokesman said it was too early to specify any concrete investments the company may plan as a result of the partnership.

The collaboration should help Audi to improve the use of smartphone apps in its cars as well as to develop computer-aided services for drivers.

Posted by on in Audi News
At the annual shareholder's meeting Audis CEO Rupert Sandler gave details about the "Audi e-tron quattro concept", which is an upcomming electic vehicle for the year 2018. Audi introduced the 'Audi e-tron quattro' concept last September at the IAA in Frankfurt, which is set to grow the market share of electric cars. The car which is manufactured in Bruessel is developed to drive over 500km without recharging. Audi's sister brands VW and Porsche who have already launched electric models act as an example for the new model and this vehicle will be Audi's first electric car. The Audi e-tron is characterised by three electric engines and a massive battery from the Korean brands Samsung and LG. Audi is going to introduce an electronic all-wheel drive where a mechanical connection between the axis is no longer required. These components make the vehicle so unique in it's motor concept. Experts conjecture about the name of the upcomming car and came to the decision to call it the "Audi Q6 e-tron". The main issue this vehicle has is that even though this car is enviromentally friendly, the company is worried it will suffer the consequenses of the big Diesel fuel scandal of its related brand Volkswagen. Refering to the scandal, in September 2015 the USA discovered that VW manipulated more than 11 million vehicles to visually lower the value of fumes to circumvent the US-american exhaust emission standars. As a result Audi hopes to recover the bad image of the VW-scandal with this innovative car. Accordingly Audi e-tron will be in competition with the Tesla e-model "X".

Posted by on in Volkswagen News
The Volkswagen Emission Scandal

On the 18 September 2015 the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) revealed that Volkswagen manipulated emission tests with a special software to achieve better results and boost their sales.

The software is able to detect if the car is in a test environment so it can lower the performance of the engine to improve the emission results. Originally it was believed that the  software was only installed into 1.4-2.0 litre diesel motors but on the 2 November a new allegation came out. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) claims that the 3 litres diesel motors are also affected by the manipulation. That includes cars from Audi and Porsche.

Later it was found out that not only cars in the United States were affected. According to Volkswagen 11 million cars were built with the software and 8,5 millions of those were sold in the EU. There are a lot of investigations in many different countries because of the scandal. Volkswagen could get fined billions.

As a consequence of the scandal the Volkswagen CEO Martin Winterkorn stepped down and other managers were on leave. His successor is the former Porsche CEO Mathias Müller.

The value of Volkswagen shares dropped more than 60% and the image of the company took a big hit. Volkswagen responded by recalling millions of cars worldwide and putting £4.8 billion aside to cover upcoming costs. This and the falling shares resulted in a loss of €2.5 billion, the first loss the company has made in the last 15 years.

Unfortunately  for Volkswagen the costs can exceed their expectations since the EPA alone can set a maximum fine of $18 billion. VW themselves admit that costs of possible legal action by car owners and shareholders “cannot be estimated at the current time.” 

Posted by on in Volkswagen News

Volkswagen overtook Toyota in global sales for the first half of 2015.

Toyota said on Tuesday it sold 5.02 million vehicles in the six months through June, less than the 5.04 million VW said it had sold in the same period.

The reversal in market positions comes three years ahead of Volkswagen’s target to overtake its Japanese rival by 2018.

Posted by on in Volkswagen News

Volkswagen's chairman Ferdinand Piech has resigned from his role as chairman.

He resigned at the weekend with immediate effect following a clash with key directors.

Volkswagen stock surged more than 4 per cent in early trading on Monday as shareholders bet his resignation will herald improvements in corporate governance and shareholder returns.

There are also rumours that Volkswagen may make a move into F1 as Piech has in the past been the stumbling block due to a personal feud with F1 chief Bernie Ecclestone.

Ferdinand Piech shaped the company's destiny for more than 25 years. He rescued Volkswagen's fortunes as CEO from 1993 to 2002 and he then served as a powerful board chairman.

Time will only tell if this is a good move for the company or not, watch this space!

Posted by on in Audi News
It appears that Audi has out sold Mercedes Benz In January 2015. Demand in China and USA helped Audi to achieve record sales in January and analysts have speculated that the lead over Mercedes may even widen.

Posted by on in Audi News
The new Audi TT has a turbo charged 2.0 litre 4 cylinder engine with a reported 220 horse power. Both the new Audi TT and TT Roadster were debuted at the 2014 Los Angeles Auto Show in November.

Jochem Heizmann, head of Volkswagen Group China has said that Volkswagen will be offering Chinese drivers in excess of 20 NEVs soon.

Posted by on in Audi News

Audi insist rumours linking the company to F1 are "pure speculation" and are "without any foundation." However the rumours continue to grow!

Posted by on in Skoda News
Skoda have announced their best ever sales results for the month of September. Sales have risen by 10.4 per cent to 95,600 units in September the company announced.

Posted by on in Audi News
Audi stated that it's sales in China surged over the first 9 months of the year. Sales have apparently been boosted by demand for it's Q3 and Q5 sports editions.

Posted by on in Volkswagen News

In the past week Volkswagen has recalled a number of vehicles. They are recalling over 18,000 model-year 2009 Routan vehicles and over 151,000 model-year 2009-2014 Tiguan vehicles.

The Routan has an issue with the ignition, Volkswagen will notify owners, and dealers will modify the ignition switch, free of charge.

The Tiguan has an issue with the fuel system but only in certain conditions. Bubbles can form in the the fuel system if winterized fuel is used, Volkswagen will notify owners, and dealers will update the vehicle's software to increase the fuel pump pressure, free of charge.

Volkswagen have announced that they will be adding two car making facilities in China. They will be located in the eastern Chinese city of Qingdao and the northern city of Tianjin.

Skoda have recently announced the official price list for Australia. The cheapest version now available to order is $31,990 Australian dollars.

Posted by on in Volkswagen News
The best dealership in Volkswagen South Africa has been named as Ermelo Volkswagen in 2013. Volkswagen announced the winner at the Volkswagen’s annual gala dinner held in Johannesburg.

Rumour has it that the next generation Audi Q7 SUV will have an electric turbocharger. 

Posted by on in Audi News

At this week's Beijing Motor Show Audi showed a transformation in the Audi TT into an off-road-ready hybrid crossover. The crossover is less powerful than the Nanuk Quattro, the off-road car that was shown last year but is certainly no slouch in the performance department.

Posted by on in Skoda News

The Skoda Rapid Spaceback is a compact car which is practical, sporty and offers ample interior space.

"The new Skoda Rapid Spaceback is a milestone for Skoda: it means that we are entering the strategically important segment of compact hatchback models," says Skoda CEO Winfried Vahland.

There is no doubt Skoda's chief designer Jozef Kaban has done a great job.

Volkswagen have decided to show their e-Golf and e-Up models that are run entirely on electric at the Frankfurt show next month. Both are due to go on sale in 2014.