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Big shift to electrics for VW, but where’s the diesel fix?

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Published on Sun, Jun 19, 2016

By: The LACar Editorial Staff

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VW says it will have over 30 electric cars by 2025 (Nakano)

“Volkswagen announced Thursday that it would spend $11.2 billion to create more than 30 electric car models by 2025, develop autonomous vehicles and move into the ride-hailing business. ‘This is a big shift,’ said Michelle Krebs, a market analyst for Auto Trader. And high risk. VW is ‘slicing pieces off a very small pie,’ said Jessica Caldwell, director of industry analysis at Edmunds.com. But Volkswagen is in a pinch. Caught systematically cheating on emissions tests on its diesel engines, VW repelled potential customers, infuriated regulators and took an $18.3-billion earnings hit last year to deal with the fallout. Vehicle sales are down 13% in the first five months of 2016. Now, the company is aggressively trying to recover its reputation…” - Russ Mitchell and Alexander Schiffer, LA TIMES Business Section … June 16, 2016

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Above: The fully electric Volkswagen e-Golf (Nakano)

All of the above sounds like the Volkswagen people are already working on their reputation instead of the hundreds of thousands of motor vehicles that they sold to a trusting public as “Clean Diesel”. It almost sounds as though they’re saying, “Oh, we’ve put all that sturm und drang behind us … Look at these new shiny objects, aren’t they pretty? Look how they sparkle in the sun ... Please, pay no attention to the smoke clouds. The world is a wonderful place, and we’re putting up a lot of money to make sure that everything is cool with you,” And yet there’s no fix for their (knowingly) bad machinery … Not even hint (as far as I know) about whether it’s electronic or mechanical, or (as most suspect) a combination of both. The sell honest people half a million dirty diesel-powered cars, and they’re talking electric vehicles as if the first part of this sentence just never happened. Have they found, drawn, and quartered those three or four rogue engineers that caused this mess in the first place? Will that assuage the damage that continues to be done? What’s up Wolfsburg? The Volkswagen AG people seem to have added a new ploy to the obfuscation playbook: “Hey ... People, we all need to move on … the future is electric … awake, look ahead, not back ... no more worries ... we’re here to help.” -Doug Stokes, June 17, 2016

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Meanwhile, not much news on the fix for diesel gate (Nakano)

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