We have worked hard to make VW more proactive with EU consumers affected by the ‘dieselgate scandal’. So said Vera Jourová, Commissioner for Justice, Consumers and Gender Equality, on July 17.

“VW fulfilled the action plan they promised to me, but that was all,” added the commissioner. “This is again a reminder of the need for stronger rules on individual redress in the EU, including collective actions.”

Jourová was commenting on conclusions published by the Commission and national consumer authorities as regards the 8.5 million car recalls made in the EU by the Volkswagen group after the “dieselgate” scandal.

According to Jourová, the VW Group’s effort to build trust in the recalls and the significant improvement in the information provided to consumers, are welcomed.

On the other hand, Volkswagen has not provided a full and clear guarantee that the update is not affecting the cars’ performance and has refused to simplify the conditions giving access to the Trust Building Measure.

According to the Commission, concerned consumers are encouraged to contact their local dealers if they have any problems related to the update. In case they are denied assistance, they should lodge a formal complaint with the Volkswagen national contact points for the recall and can inform their national consumer organisation.

The conclusion of this coordinated EU-level action does not exclude further actions by enforcement authorities at national level, according to their local circumstances.

From September 2020, when new rules come into effect, the Commission will be able to order EU-wide recalls and impose administrative penalties on manufacturers or technical services of up to €30,000 per non-compliant car.