Drivers who neglect to get their cars updated will have them deregistered as Germany gets tough on its emissions laws
Reuters reports that the KBA, Germany’s motor vehicle regulatory body, can revoke the registrations of cars without the fix because these would still be emitting more NOx than was originally declared.
The fix is mandatory in Germany because the authorities declared it a safety recall, whereas in the UK it was labelled a ‘service action’.
The deregistrations are therefore not completely unexpected. Similar deregistrations are very unlikely to happen in the UK because the fix was not declared a safety issue here.
Owners across Europe are sceptical of the fix after claims that the software tweak can cause cars to become less fuel efficient and cause faults that trigger limp home mode.
A recent Autocar investigation carried out on a 1.6-litre diesel Volkswagen Touran found that despite NOx emissions reducing by almost half after the fix, the car returned poorer fuel economy and emitted 6.5% more CO2.
Volkswagen continues to claim that the fix has no adverse effect on cars’ reliability, emissions or fuel economy, backed up by verification from the KBA.
Deregistrations will commence depending on when the owners were issued with the recall notice; this means that some owners’ cars could be deregistered next month.
Around two-thirds of affected Volkswagens in Germany have had the fix applied. According to a Volkswagen spokesman, the fix is not expected to reach a 100% rate, due to some affected cars having been written off or being untraceable by the government, but the rate is climbing.