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Digital Subscriptions > Newsweek International > 10th June 2016 > LIFE AFTER DEATH


‘Dieselgate’ didn’t kill Volkswagen—sales are humming again, and VW may never tell the truth about that sordid scandal


LATE LAST YEAR, at the height of its “Dieselgate” scandal, Volkswagen unfurled a white banner across the front of its 1930s-era plant in Wolfsburg, Germany. It bore an appeal in German that translated to: “We need transparency, energy and courage—but most of all, we need you.”

The banner, which looked a bit like a flag of surrender, was directed at Volkswagen’s workers and the scores of tourists who flock to the company’s birthplace. Just a few months before, in September, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency announced that the German automaker had installed cheat devices in its diesel engines that gamed emissions tests and allowed them to spew pollutants at a rate many times above the legal limit. The scandal soon widened to include nearly 12 million cars globally—the biggest known fraud in automotive history.

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