Volkswagen will no longer offer diesel vehicles in the U.S., its global brand chief said, ending speculation the company might return to the technology after its emissions scandal fades from memory.
The comments by Volkswagen brand CEO Herbert Diess, first reported by European business daily Handelsblatt and confirmed to Reuters by a VW spokesman, were the strongest yet to deny the possibility that diesel — once a quarter of the brand’s U.S. sales — could be a part of Volkswagen’s future U.S. lineup.
Volkswagen reached a $14.7 billion settlement with 475,000 U.S. owners of diesel vehicles and federal and California regulators in October after admitting to installing secret software in its diesel cars to cheat emissions tests.
Meanwhile, Mercedes is weighing up whether it will sell their latest diesel models in America, where customer demand is falling.
Mercedes is working to get certification on a limited number of diesel models it had planned to offer in the U.S., Matthias Luehrs, vice president of sales and product management for Mercedes-Benz Cars, said last week during an interview at the auto show here. More rigorous testing procedures by the EPA in the wake of Volkswagen’s diesel emissions scandal have delayed diesel certifications for Mercedes and other automakers.
But Mercedes’ long-term outlook on diesels in the U.S. is shakier. The company is conducting market research on U.S. diesel demand to help guide its direction, Luehrs said.