The law firm representing hundreds of Volkswagen driver urges the motor manufacturer to come clean over which cars are affected and where they are

Law firm Leigh Day, who are representing hundreds of Volkswagen drivers in the UK, have called on the German motor company to ‘come clean’ over which cars have been affected in the UK.

The London-based law firm also announced that they are considering the environmental implications of the scandal.

Bozena Michalowska-Howells from the Consumer Law and Product Safety group at law firm Leigh Day said she had been left ‘aghast’ after Friday’s press conference at Volkswagen head quarters in the German city of Wolfsberg, which she said had did nothing for the peace of mind of consumers in the UK.

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Ms Michalowska-Howells said:

“It is a disgrace that seven days after this scandal came to light, and an announcement made that up to 11 million cars could be fitted with these cheat devices, consumers in the UK and other countries in Europe and around the world are still being kept in the dark over their vehicles.

“The Volkswagen statement released last Friday centered solely on the new CEO Matthias Mueller, and gave scant regard to the millions of customers who could now face significant losses through this apparent deception.

“Our Clients still do not know definitively whether cars in the UK are affected and if so which models. They do not know whether the car they are driving is indeed emitting 40 times the legal emissions limit as has been suggested, nor do they know whether their cars will be recalled to bring them into the line with EU regulations.

“There is a woeful lack of clarity. Volkswagen must now come clean over which models were affected and in which countries, the regulators must also now make urgent measures to ensure that deception on this scale could never happen again.

“We also call on the UK government to act fast and take action to prevent further damage to air quality.

“Those Volkswagen customers that this scandal affects face a number of losses on top of the inconvenience of not having the vehicle whilst it is being repaired. Drivers will be faced with higher fuel costs as the vehicle will be less fuel efficient following any upgrade.

“There is also the potential for consumers to face a higher vehicle excise duty, as vehicles will be less fuel efficient and could emit more CO2 following any upgrade. Consumers in some regions of the UK may also be out of pocket where parking charges are based upon these emissions.

“It may also be the case that there will be significant reduction in the second-hand re-sale value of the vehicle. This will have a particularly significant impact on organisations that have bought fleets of Volkswagen cars, because of their fuel and emissions ‘record’ and reputation for holding their value."

Carol Day, an environmental lawyer at Leigh Day said:

“The UK is committed to reducing greenhouse gas emissions by at least 80% below base levels by 2050 under the Climate Change Convention and the Climate Change Act 2008. Transport emissions make up nearly a quarter of UK emissions, but this figure was estimated to reduce by around a third over the next decade primarily through more efficient combustion engines.

"As well as the losses suffered by the individual car-owners, there has clearly been a significant impact on the environment as a result of increased nitrogen oxide emissions, which the Government has not been able to asses as part of its strategy on climate change"