Volkswagen will close its historical factory of Wolfsburg (Germany) for several days because of the new european tests of pollution, which slow down the registration of its models, while its competitors do not report any difficulty. “We should expect production disruptions in the third quarter” for the site of Wolfsburg, has cautioned Herbert Diess, president and CEO of Volkswagen, at a meeting with employees held on Wednesday. “Closure days” are to be expected between the end of the summer holidays and the end of September, said Mr Diess.
Porsche, a subsidiary of VW, has suspended at the beginning of the month sale on its website of its models, also evoking the “enormous weight” of the new regulations. The other two German carmakers, BMW and Daimler, seem to be in contrast to escape the problem: BMW to leave its production targets unchanged”, said Thursday a spokesman to the AFP, while Daimler said Wednesday at the daily Handelsblatt don’t wait until you “make significant cuts in (its) production”.
In France, PSA and Renault are not forced to adapt their production. “As every year the factories of the Renault group and will be adopted for the summer vacation, on the same number of weeks as usual,” said the group to the AFP. Side of PSA, a spokesperson assures that “thanks to wise technology choices, the five brands of the PSA group are perfectly ready for the WLTP”, the acronym in English of “test of light-duty vehicles harmonized at a global level”.
All cars sold in the european Union from the 1st of September will need to have undergone this procedure. The reform, already in germ, has been accelerated by the huge scandal of diesel engines-fixing that broke out at Volkswagen there has already been three years. The first automaker in the world had admitted the use of software capable of distorting the results of the testing program, thereby concealing the actual level of pollution on the nitrogen oxides (NOx), which promote respiratory and cardiovascular diseases. The new tests are supposed to better represent the operation of a car in real world conditions, but are also much more long and complex.