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Diesel emissions scandal

Swiss ban Volkswagen sales as Mueller pledges action

VolkswagenSwitzerland has imposed a temporary ban on the sale of Volkswagen diesel-engine models which may be fitted with devices capable of giving inaccurate emission test results.

The move by the Swiss Federal Roads office could affect 180,000 unsold cars and follows revelations that world’s the biggest carmaker deliberately cheated to falsify the tests.

Switzerland’s decision may herald further action by other countries and escalates the crisis facing Matthias Mueller who was confirmed on Friday as the new VW chief executive following the resignation of Martin Winterkorn.

The Swiss authorities said the ban affected vehicles that have 1.2-litre 1.6-litre and 2.0-litre diesel engines and apart from several VW models these included Audi, Seat and Skoda brands.

The ban does not apply to vehicles already on the road.

Mr Mueller yesterday pledged to rebuild VW’s reputation. “My most urgent task is to win back trust for the Volkswagen Group – by leaving no stone unturned and with maximum transparency, as well as drawing the right conclusions from the current situation,” said the former Porsche chief whose appointment was predicted in Daily Business last week.

VW has admitted that about 11 million cars worldwide are fitted with the so-called “defeat device” – 2.8 million of them in Germany – and further costly recalls and refits are possible. Half of the company’s sales in Europe – VW’s biggest market – are for diesel cars.

VW shares plunged around 30% in the days after the scandal broke.

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