Porsche, Audi and other Volkswagen Group vehicles emissions claim FAQs
Find out more information on the Porsche, Audi, Volkswagen, SEAT and Skoda Group vehicles emissions claim and how you can join the action.
Join the Porsche, Audi and other Volkswagen Group vehicles emissions claim
Why are you bringing another group claim against the Volkswagen Group?
In September 2015 it was revealed that some Volkswagen Group vehicles fitted with EA189 diesel engines contained software that artificially reduced NOx emissions and enabled the vehicles to allegedly “cheat” emissions tests.
Leigh Day are the joint lead solicitors in a group claim on behalf of over 90,000 owners of EA189 vehicles which is ongoing in England and Wales (the “EA189 group action”). In April 2020, the High Court found that software fitted to the EA189 vehicles was an illegal defeat device. The defendants were denied permission to appeal the decision to the Court of Appeal. Late in 2020, the claimants in the action amended their claim to include allegations that the “fix” applied by Volkswagen to remove the offending software, was another defeat device (called a “thermal window”) which means that “fixed” vehicles only comply with the emissions standards at temperatures of between 15°C and 32°C. The EA189 group action is listed for trial in early 2023.
The deadline to join the EA189 group action closed in 2018, and our ongoing involvement in the case means that we are unable to take on further claims for Volkswagen Group vehicles that are fitted with EA189 engines.
Since 2015, the German Federal Motor Transport Authority (the KBA) has issued further recalls of some Audi, Porsche, Volkswagen and Volkswagen Commercial vehicles to remove what the KBA has described as “impermissible defeat devices” , “impermissible shut down devices” or “prohibited shut down devices”. In the UK, some Porsche vehicles have also been recalled. In May 2019, Porsche, which is part of the Volkswagen Group, was fined £459 million by German prosecutors for cheating diesel emissions tests after finding “negligent breaches of supervisory duties” at the company.
Following these additional allegations, Leigh Day is investigating a second group claim against the Volkswagen Group arising from the emissions irregularities which have been identified in some Porsche, Audi, and other Volkswagen Group diesel vehicles.
As with the EA189 vehicles, we believe that these vehicles are likely to be fitted with software which is unlawful under UK law. We are intending to bring legal claims on behalf of current and former owners and lessees of the affected vehicles.
This second group claim excludes Volkswagen Group vehicles fitted with EA189 diesel engines.
Which vehicles are included as part of this claim?
Our investigations into the vehicles that are likely to form part of this group claim are ongoing. We understand that the following vehicles maybe subject to recall either in the UK or by the KBA:
- Cayenne S 4.2l V8
- Panamera 4.0l V8
- Cayenne 3.0l V6
- Macan 3.0l V6
- A4 3.0l EA897 engine type
- A4 4.2l V8
- A5 3.0l EA897 engine type
- A6 3.0l EA897 engine type
- A7 3.0l EA897 engine type
- A8 3.0l EA897 engine type
- A8 4.2l V8
- Q5 3.0l EA897 engine type
- Q7 3.0l EA897 engine type
- Q7 4.2l V8
- SQ5 3.0l, EA897 engine type
- Crafter 2.0l, EA288 engine type
- Transporter 2.0l, EA288 engine type
- Touareg 3.0l, EA897 engine type
We also believe that some other Audi, Volkswagen, SEAT and Skoda vehicles fitted with EA288, EA897, EA898 and 4.2l V8 engines may be affected. Owners of vehicles fitted with EA189 diesel engines are unable to join this claim.
Please note that the above list is not a definitive list of all affected vehicles. Our investigations are ongoing, and the above list is subject to change as further information emerges.
If you believe that your vehicle may qualify, please complete our form.
What does “other Volkswagen Group vehicles” include?
We are investigating the following Volkswagen Group brand vehicles as part of this claim:
- Volkswagen Commercial
Has Volkswagen settled any claims?
Volkswagen has settled class actions proceedings relating to the EA189 vehicles in the US, Australia, and Germany.
Volkswagen has also settled US class action proceedings relating to some 3.0l Porsche Cayenne; Volkswagen Touareg, and Audi vehicles.
Why should I join the claim?
Amongst other things, we believe that owners and lessees of affected vehicles were misled as to their vehicles’ compliance with the law and their environmental performance, which were advertised as being more environmentally friendly with lower nitrogen dioxide (NOx) emissions.
Increased levels of NOx are associated with many environmental and health issues, and there is evidence that emissions of NOx can lead to global warming.
Public Health England identified NOx as a ‘major component’ of urban air pollution. It estimates that long-term exposure to man-made air pollution in the UK has an annual effect equivalent to 28,000 to 36,000 deaths.
What is the current position?
We have secured funding from commercial providers to ensure we have the resources available to instruct the best experts and barristers, and to have a large enough legal team to ensure that our clients get the best service possible. We have also secured insurance to protect claimants from having to pay the defendants’ costs if the claim is unsuccessful.
What is the difference between this claim and the claim you are already bringing against the Volkswagen Group?
This new claim is separate to the existing litigation against the Volkswagen Group. The existing claim relates to diesel vehicles fitted with EA189 engines manufactured by Volkswagen, Audi, Skoda, and SEAT. The engine sizes of the EA189 vehicles affected were 1.2l, 1.6l or 2.0l. The deadline to join this group action expired in 2018.
The new claim we are investigating relates to newer engine types manufactured by the Volkswagen Group and includes Porsche and Volkswagen commercial vehicles, as well as some Audi, Volkswagen SEAT and Skoda vehicles. It also includes 3.0l as well as 3.0l V6, 4.0l V8 and 4.20l V8 engines.
Can all Porsche, Audi and Volkswagen Group vehicle owners bring a claim?
Only people who bought or leased an affected vehicle can bring a claim. Our investigations as to which vehicles were affected are ongoing. The details of the vehicles we are currently investigating are set out above in Which vehicles are included as part of this claim? Not every Porsche, Volkswagen or Audi vehicle is included. Volkswagen Group vehicles fitted with EA189 engines are excluded.
How can I tell if my Volkswagen vehicle is fitted with an EA189 engine?
If your vehicle has an EA189 engine, you may have received letters from your vehicle manufacturer about the “EA189 Service Action” or “EA189 NOx Issue”. The manufacturers have also assigned a code to the “fix”, and so you may find mention of the following service measure in your vehicle’s service records, depending upon which brand of vehicle you own:
- Volkswagen vehicles - “23R7 service measure”
- Audi vehicles – “23Q7 service measure”
- SEAT – “23S1 service measure”
- Skoda – “23R6 service measure”
If you have received any such correspondence or if any of the above service measures have been applied to your vehicle, you cannot join this claim.
What if my Volkswagen Group vehicle is fitted with an EA189 engine?
The deadline to join the group action against the Volkswagen Group for vehicles fitted with EA189 engines expired in 2018. Our ongoing involvement in that litigation means that we are unable to take on new claims for EA189 vehicles.
There are other firms who are taking on cases relating to the EA189 engines outside of the group action and the Law Society may be able to provide you with their details.
How do I know if my vehicle is eligible for this new claim?
You can find out if your vehicle is eligible by completing our online form. If your vehicle satisfies our criteria, you will be taken to a page to formally instruct us to act on your behalf.
Does this apply to petrol or diesel vehicles?
This claim only relates to diesel vehicles.
What do I need to do to join?
Complete our form as fully as possible. We will need you to provide us with your vehicle registration number. The form may not recognise cherished or private number plates, so please ensure you provide the original vehicle registration number for your vehicle.
If your vehicle is one of those currently under investigation you will be given the option to review our terms and our funding documents and to formally instruct us to act on your behalf.
What is a VIN?
The VIN is a 17-digit number starting with a 3-letter code. You should be able to find the VIN in the front of the service book or at the bottom of the windscreen (as you look into the vehicle). If you no longer own your vehicle, the VIN number should be included on your vehicle purchase documents.
What will it cost me?
We will be bringing these claims on a 'No Win-No Fee' basis. This means that we will deduct up to 35% (inclusive of VAT) of your damages if the claim is successful, but if the claim is lost you will not have to pay anything. Our success fee, the insurance premium and the funders’ fees will never be more than 35% of your damages. The deduction from your damages is dependant upon the number of clients who instruct us to act on their behalf, and so it is possible that it may be less 35%.
Can I use my own legal insurance?
You may have other sources of funding for your claim other than the funding package we are offering. For example:
- Legal expenses insurance. Many home insurance products include legal expenses insurance either automatically or as an optional add-on. You should contact your insurers to check.
- If you are a member of a trade union, you should check whether the union will fund you.
If you have such an alternative source of funding, then it may be cheaper for you to use it than the funding package we are offering. We are not offering to act via such legal expenses insurance/union funding, so if you wish to use it you will need to instruct another firm.
Can I bring a claim if I bought my vehicle on finance?
Yes, provided you bought a vehicle we are currently investigating as part of this claim you can join this group action. The finance agreement should name you as the contracting party to the agreement.
Can I bring a claim if I have a company car?
Yes, provided your vehicle is one of the vehicles we are investigating as part of the group action, you can bring a claim. The types of claim that we can bring on your behalf will depend upon who is named as a party to the agreement for the supply of the vehicle.
Can I bring a claim if my vehicle is leased?
Yes, if the contract is in your name and the vehicle is one of the vehicles we are investigating as part of the group action, you can bring a claim.
I have sold my vehicle, can I claim?
Yes, provided it can be confirmed that your vehicle is one of the vehicles we are investigating as part of the group action. You will need to check your vehicle registration number and we will ask you to provide us with your vehicle purchase documents.
Can I claim for more than one vehicle?
Yes, provided all the vehicles you want to claim for are eligible to be included as part of the group action. If you want to claim for more than one vehicle, please answer “yes” to the question on the form which asks if you want to claim in relation to more than one vehicle, and we will contact you separately to request further details about your additional vehicles.
Does it matter where I bought my vehicle from?
No, it does not matter where you bought your vehicle from as long as it was bought in England & Wales.
You are eligible to bring a claim against the manufacturer whether you bought your vehicle from a showroom, from a private seller or from an independent dealer.
The types of claim we can bring will depend on the date of purchase and from whom the car was bought. Details of the different types of claim are set out in the sign-up documents.
Am I able to claim if I bought my vehicle second hand?
Yes, you will still be able to claim whether your vehicle was bought new or second hand, provided the vehicle is one of the vehicles we are investigating as part of the group action.
What if I bought or leased my vehicle in Scotland?
We have determined that the interests of people who acquired their vehicle in Scotland are better served by bringing their claims through the Scottish courts. You are likely to be better off using a Scottish law firm that has expertise in this area.
You can contact the Law Society of Scotland who may be able to help to find a suitable lawyer. Time limits apply to claiming but we are unable to advise you on the time limits applicable in Scotland.
What if I live outside the UK?
Unfortunately, we are unable to act on your behalf if you currently live outside the UK.
Why should I instruct Leigh Day?
Leigh Day is one of the country's leading law firms, we are not a claims management company. Bringing group actions on behalf of consumers is one of Leigh Day's key areas of specialism and we have been involved in many of the most important and cutting-edge group actions brought in the UK. Our expertise in holding corporations to account is unrivalled.
All too often large corporations profit at the expense of individuals and the environment. We have a history of holding these corporations to account, both in the UK and abroad.
We are committed to achieving access to justice for all including full, fair compensation by providing first-rate legal advice.
We believe that our experience of group actions together with our leading role in the existing group claim against the Volkswagen Group sets us apart from any other law firm when it comes to this claim. We have recently issued proceedings against Mercedes-Benz following allegations of emissions cheating and are also investigating a group claim against Nissan and Renault arising from similar allegations.