BERLIN Nov 11 Volkswagen has
dampened hopes for quick results from an investigation into its
rigging of diesel emissions tests and said developing a fix for
the affected cars rather than finding the root cause of the
manipulations is its top priority.
"I understand the desire for speed, but what matters to us
instead is to work thoroughly and to not give out false
premature results," VW brand sales chief Juergen Stackmann said
at a panel discussion late on Tuesday.
VW's internal investigation is focusing on as many as 40
employees involved in activities related to the manipulations,
one person familiar with the matter told Reuters last month.
Independent investigators led by U.S. law firm Jones Day are
looking into documents and computer files dating back as far as
2005 when VW took steps to push diesel-engine technology in the
United States, and it could take at least six months to achieve
results, VW's chief in Britain, Paul Willis, wrote in a letter
to British lawmakers published on Tuesday.
The scandal erupted on Sept. 18 when U.S. authorities
exposed VW's use of "defeat devices" to cheat tests for
emissions of nitrogen oxide. VW is facing multibillion-euro
costs to remedy the issue after admitting such software was
installed in up to 11 million diesel vehicles worldwide.
VW owners have been frustrated as the German carmaker still
has not engineered a fix for the diesels. The company has halted
sales of cars under investigation which it admits were fitted
with software capable of cheating government emissions tests.
"What's at stake at the moment is not to find out why people
did something, that will be revealed by the investigations,"
"What matters to us primarily is that we can offer full
transparency to our customers at this point," the VW executive
said. "Without the trust of our customers, VW would have never
become a great brand.
(Reporting by Andreas Cremer; Editing by Jonathan Oatis)