Volkswagen Cuts Big, But Bugatti Chiron Lives
The dark cloud that hangs over Volkswagen AG is only getting darker as the investigation continues to turn up details surrounding the current diesel scandal. In a works meeting with more than 20,000 employees in attendance, Volkswagen CEO Matthias Muller addressed the current situation with an optimistic stance saying: “We can and we will overcome this crisis, because Volkswagen is a group with a strong foundation.”
So far, four different brands and a long list of models have been found to be affected by the scandal, with some sources reporting that even some 2016 models may have similar emissions-dodging software. It really makes you wonder how deep the scandal really goes, as we were initially told it was limited to previous model years. Volkswagen has, however, developed an action plan that involves software updates to some affected models and hardware updates to others. Righting the wrong is one thing, but it’s going to take a lot more than that to win back the trust from consumers and investors.
It’s pretty clear that VAG is currently in damage control mode as Muller stated: “While the technical solutions to these problems are imminent, it is not possible to quantify the commercial and financial implications at the present.” And because of that, VAG has decided to cut out anything that isn’t absolutely necessary: “We must make massive savings to manage the consequences of this crisis.” Given the extent of VAG’s cutbacks, it’s easy to think an exotic brand like Bugatti would be the first to go, but surprisingly, that isn’t the case. Bugatti itself has claimed that everything is moving forward as scheduled in relation to the development of the Bugatti Chiron, and will debut as planned. It seems like a pretty bold move to continue development of such and expensive exotic vehicle, given the financial crisis VAG may face in the near future, but the Chiron is almost complete. In a roundabout way, it makes sense to finish it and hope to take in a decent profit.
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Why it matters
Obviously VAG hopes that it won’t turn belly-up when all of the details are brought forward. Scandals aren’t cheap, and this one really takes the cake. Needless to say, VW won’t be wasting time, energy, or money on things like developing concepts or new technology – at least not for a while. So, don’t expect Volkswagen, Bentley, Audi, Porsche, or any of VAG’s other subsidiaries to bring anything new to the table in the near future.
Read more about the Bugatti Chiron in our review here.