After last year’s Dieselgate, Volkswagen is still very much occupied handling damage control and further losses. Following last year’s emission-cheating reveal, VW just reported their largest losses in history after sustaining a €16.2 billion ($18.2 billion) hit in emissions charges.
Volkswagen reported a €1.36 billion net loss for 2015 and an additional operating loss of €4.1 billion over the 2015 year, the company’s first losses since 1993. “The current crisis is having a huge impact on Volkswagen’s financial position,” CEO Matthias Mueller said in a statement on Friday. He said the “repercussions of the emissions issue are now quantifiable.”
Analysts have indicated that there is still no end in sight with potential fines issued by the US Justice Department as part of a civil settlement still hanging over Volkswagen’s head. An additional DoJ investigation could possibly even lead to upcoming criminal charges.
The 12-brand Volkswagen Group that also spans over automakers such as Audi, Porsche, Bentley and Lamborghini had a €12.8 billion operating profit excluding ‘special items’. The German car group already but some €6.7 billion aside to cover the emission-cheating charges. Progress is however imminent, with VW having taken the first step earlier this week by agreeing to a preliminary deal with U.S. authorities to fix or buy back about 500,000 affected cars in the United States.
The amount of sold diesel cars is however much larger outside the United States, and whether Volkswagen will offer compensation for those remains unsure. There are also still questions about who specifically is to blame for the whole ordeal. One thing is certain, Dieselgate is going to give VW plenty of headaches the upcoming years. NordLB analyst Frank Schwope adds: “The crisis in Wolfsburg is far from over yet, the agreement with U.S. regulators is nothing but an intermediate step in a marathon that should stretch out over the next 5-10 years.”