Environmental Group Scores Court Victory Against Volkswagen

Industry News / 6 Comments

The German automaker could be forced to issue a major recall.

A German environmental NGO has achieved a court victory against Volkswagen in Hamburg following as a result of the automaker's decision to sell vehicles with software on exhaust gas recirculation, something the NGO argued is illegal.

The group, Deutsche Umwelthifle (DUH), demands the VW Golf, which is no longer sold in North America except the performance-focused GTI and Golf R, be recalled. Why? Because it supposedly uses software manipulation to emissions mechanisms, according to a Reuters report.

It alleges the KBA authority, the German equivalent to America's National Highway Transportation Safety Administration (NHTSA), should never have allowed these cars to be sold on the market in the first place. "The case was effectively successful," said a court spokesperson. This means, essentially, the KBA needs to revoke its previous decision that allowed these Golfs to be sold.

2018-2021 Volkswagen Golf Front-End View Volkswagen
2018-2021 Volkswagen Golf Rear Angle View Volkswagen
2018-2021 Volkswagen Golf Front Seats Volkswagen

The report did not state which model years are affected or how many units in total are involved. What was made clear is that the DUH is not done targeting other German automakers over the same issue. It said it's currently planning more cases against Volkswagen, BMW, and Mercedes-Benz.

If the NGO proves successful with these additional lawsuits, upwards of 10 million vehicles could be recalled. VW has not issued a lengthy statement following the court's ruling, only that it is now assessing its next legal steps.

The DUH has a consistent and recent history of suing German automakers for what it claims are blatant violations of environmental law. But it's not always successful in its litigation efforts.

2021-2023 Volkswagen ID.4 Forward View CarBuzz
2021-2023 Volkswagen ID.4 View Out Back CarBuzz
2021-2023 Volkswagen ID.4 Steering Wheel CarBuzz

Earlier this month, a separate German court rejected a DUH lawsuit against BMW that demanded for the automaker end combustion-engine vehicle sales entirely by 2030.

In January, a German court indicated it would not rule in Greenpeace Germany's favor in a different case against Volkswagen that argued the company's policies are violating people's fundamental freedoms regarding climate change. This organization first took VW to court in late 2021 over that demand, and their legal fights are surely far from over.

Rearward Vision Volkswagen
Sideward Vision Volkswagen
Dashboard Volkswagen

Join The Discussion


2018-2021 Volkswagen Golf Front View Driving
2018-2021 Volkswagen Golf Front-End View
2018-2021 Volkswagen Golf Rear Angle View
2018-2021 Volkswagen Golf Front Seats

Related Cars

To Top