VW Europe Apology

With more than 1.2 million of the 11 million affected cars in the UK, the managing director of Volkswagen UK has issued his own apology for the deceptive software.


Willis told members of parliament (MPs) that he is working hard to communicate with customers. He also admitted the company's failures:

"We mishandled the situation. That's why we need to fix the cars, that's why we need to get the customers in and need to put the cars right.

"We mishandled the situation without a shadow of a doubt."

When questioned about diesel emissions, Willis denied that the cars are emitting more than expected. The Guardian reports,

The Green party MP, Caroline Lucas, asked Willis: "How much more NOx has been emitted by your cars than would have been the case if your claims had not been dishonest?" Willis replied: "None." Lucas replied: "How can that be the case?"

Another MP told The Guardian, "There are a lot of unanswered questions that we would have expected to have been answered in the session."

Discussion Starters:

  • Watch Willis's statement to the MPs. Assess his delivery, message, and so on.
  • Compare Willis's statement to that of Martin Winterkorn and Michael Horn. What similarities and differences do you notice? To what do you attribute the differences?