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ACCC Get VW Slapped With $125M Fine Biggest Ever

Volkswagen (VW) is on the receiving end of the largest total penalty order ever made by the Federal Court after the German car manufacturer was found in breach of the Australian diesel emission standards after action was taken by the ACCC.

Fined a total of $125 million, the Federal Court declared that VW breached the Australian Consumer Law by making false representations about compliance with the Australian diesel emissions standards.

VW did not disclose to the Australian government about its ‘Two-Mode’ software that allowed the company to cheat emissions testing.

The software, first designed in 2006, was added to more than 57,000 vehicles imported and supplied to Australia between 2011 and 2015.

Dubbed ‘Diesel Dupe’ in the US, VW reportedly spent US$7.3 billion to cover the cost of the scandal in 2015.

Australian Consumer & Compeition Comission Chair, Rod Sims has called VW’s conduct ‘blatant and deliberate’.

The record-breaking federal penalty comes during ‘a trend of ever-higher penalties for breaches of Australian consumer law’.

‘The previous highest penalties of $10 million for Coles, Ford and Telstra were recently overtaken by penalties of $12 million against We Buy Houses and then penalties of $26 million ordered against vocational training provider Empower Institute,’ said Mr Sims.

VW also admitted to making false representations when applying for the vehicles to be published on the Government’s Green Vehicle Guide website.

Mr Sims claims the company would not have obtained any ratings ‘on the Green Vehicle Guide website if the Government had been made aware of the effect of Two-Mode software on the emissions testing results’.

‘Volkswagen’s conduct undermined the integrity and functioning of Australia’s vehicle import regulations which are designed to protect consumers’.

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