All because of something called Dieselgate.
VW Group consists of nine brands, among them Audi, Porsche, Skoda, and Bugatti. Its core brand, Volkswagen, is obviously it's most important. But it turns out that there a few brands VW is willing to part with if need be. According to a new report from Reuters, in the wake of the VW diesel scandal, the German automaker has managed to secure a $21.1 billion line of credit that'll be used towards the expected vehicle refits, fines and lawsuits; billions of dollars have been wiped off its market value.
That's what happens when you cheat diesel emissions. But here's the kicker: in order to secure that one-year credit line, VW had to assure lenders "it would sell or list assets worth up to significantly more than 20 billion euros if it fails to find other sources of money." Basically, if VW can't cover its debts, it agreed to find alternative ways to do so, such as selling Bentley, Lamborghini and even Ducati motor bikes. VW has already pretty much assured it'll keep Bugatti by announcing the official launch of the Chiron. Those other three brands, despite being the smallest and least valuable in terms of annual profit, could wind up with new owners sometime next year.