Volkswagen says it will not compensate European owners over the diesel-gate scandal, so defying a demand from the EU industry commissioner.
Volkswagen said there were no grounds to replicate in Europe a compensation program it plans for US.
Volkswagen said it was paying compensation in North America because it had yet to agree with local regulators how to fix affected vehicles, and so customers there would have to wait longer for a solution than elsewhere.
Volkswagen admitted in September it had cheated U.S. environmental tests by using software to mask nitrogen oxide emissions that can cause or exacerbate respiratory disease. It added that up to around 11 million vehicles worldwide could have had the software installed, including about 8.5 million in Europe.
In the United States, Volkswagen has promised goodwill compensation worth $1,000 each to tens of thousands of owners of Volkswagen vehicles that breach emissions limits.
Volkswagen is not doing itself any favors by offering unequal compensation for U.S. and European customers following an emissions scandal last year, a German justice ministry spokesman said.
“This unequal treatment … cannot be in the interest of VW,” the spokesman said during a regular news conference.
South Korea has started investigations in the Volkswagen advertising claims in the wake of the false emissions and it comes just days after it started criminal proceedings against the company over its testing.