23 September 2015
With Volkswagen conning 11 million "clean diesel" car owners with pollution controls that only work when tested under laboratory conditions, CHOICE is calling on the car maker and the Australian Government to urgently come clean on the local impacts.
Given emissions standards in Australia are less stringent than in the US, consumers are in the dark as to whether or not their Volkswagens breach Australian standards.
"It beggars belief that Volkswagen Australia can't say if it sold any of the 11 million vehicles locally," said Matt Levey CHOICE Director of Campaigns and Communications.
"If Australian consumers bought these vehicles with expectations of fuel efficiency and environmental performance, they will have been significantly misled.
"We also need to see the Australian Government in the driver's seat on this issue. Instead of the Federal Department of Infrastructure monitoring developments, they should be demanding an explanation from the manufacturer.
"If it turns out these vehicles don't breach Australian emissions standards, the government should then explain why it's possible to sell dirty vehicles in Australia but not overseas."
CHOICE says the vehicles in question release pollutants vastly above acceptable levels set by the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), with the toxic particles said to cause emphysema and respiratory disease.
This latest scandal comes in the wake of a 2013 recall of 2.6 million VW cars because of a transmission fault and millions of Toyota, Honda, Chrysler, and Nissan cars recalled earlier this year because of faulty airbags.