EU Council agrees to reform the system for motor vehicles but with “restricted” power for the Commission

It was last Monday when the EU ministers gathered in Brussels to draft new rules to prevent future emissions cheating from the automotive companies after the VW emissions scandal. The Council of Ministers from 28 countries proposed rules for cutting down the national authorities’ power giving at the same time the ability to the European […]

VW emissions scandal: While U.S. car owners are vindicated, Europe still unable to change its laws and protect its consumers

Volkswagen, the giant German automaker, has pleaded guilty to criminal charges in a Detroit federal court last Friday to conspiracy to defraud the U.S., commit wire fraud, and violate the Clean Air Act, obstruction of justice and import violations. However, VW still denies compensating European car owners arguing that a ‘technical fix’ can make cars […]

US prosecutors now target Volkswagen’s top management, upsetting Germany

Last Monday, the US prosecutors held Volkswagen executive Oliver Schmidt, charging him with plotting to deceive the United States, over VW diesel emission scandal. He is to appear today in the U.S. District Court in Miami in a hearing before a U.S. Magistrate Judge. The VW employee was shown shackled and wearing a jail outfit. […]

A Sting Exclusive: “One year on from the VW scandal and EU consumers are still in the dark”, BEUC’s Head highlights from Brussels

This article was exclusively written for the Sting by Mrs Monique Goyens, the Director General of The European Consumer Organisation (BEUC) At the end of June, Volkswagen car drivers in the US heard that the car company had agreed to provide compensation payments of up to $10,000 to each driver and promised to buy back the […]

VW emissions scandal: EU unable to protect its consumers against large multinationals

  European governments and officials seem incompetent to protect on the one hand their car consumers and on the other the environment, despite the crucial role Europe played in the climate change agreement that was signed last December in Paris. VW’s diesel emissions scandal has revealed so far that the multinational framework in Europe is much more beneficial for […]

Volkswagen scandal update: “We want clarity fast, but it is equally important to have the complete picture”, Commission’s spokesperson underscores from Brussels

More than two months have passed since the Volkswagen emissions scandal broke out and the company is still under thorough investigation revealing that many more vehicles are affected by the cheating software and the firm’s fraudulent techniques. Last Monday, the Volkswagen (VW) chief executive officer Matthias Müller stated in Wolfsburg, Germany that the majority of VW’s […]

Starbucks and FIAT again under Commission’s microscope: is Europe ready to kick multinationals out of the house?

Some multinationals (MNEs) such as FIAT and Starbucks have been overdoing it in the EU for quite some time now. The case of tax investigation of the aforementioned companies on whether they have paid the correct amount of corporate income tax or not is ongoing for over a year now. The Commissioner responsible for Competition, Mrs […]

How dearly will Germany pay for the Volkswagen emissions rigging scandal

The Volkswagen emissions scam exposed by the US authorities last week has more substance than the vast and varied financial, commercial and legal consequences wherever in the world the company is present. VW has a great weight in the German car universe with its 12 brand names (VW, Audi, Porsche, the Volkswagen trucks Scania and […]

How and why Mercedes fakes the EU fuel consumption tests

Remember the time you bought a new car. You normally visited it at the showroom, took it for a test drive, read the fuel consumption. Those three factors, together of course with the price of the vehicle, formed your purchase decision and selection between competition. Well, it seems that you can count on the showroom visit […]

European Commission: Does Apple, Starbucks and Fiat really pay their taxes?

The European Commission (EC) decided two days ago to conduct an investigation which will focus on the tax affairs of Apple, Starbucks and Fiat Finance and Trade in Ireland, the Netherlands and Luxembourg respectively. Basically, EC’s purpose is to examine if the tax authorities of the aforementioned countries are in line with the rules of […]

FIAT Chrysler: from Geneva Motor show to the World, and back

With a $ 4.35 billion deal, FIAT Group took full control of Chrysler in January 2014 and announced the soon-to-be created FCA, the FIAT Chrysler Automobiles holding company. Thanks to a huge PR campaign, the news shook the markets and generated a shy optimism all around. In such a weak economic situation, the birth of […]

Merkel, Mercedes and Volkswagen to abolish European democracy

That the German automotive industry is one of the strongest in the world is not news. Most Europeans are rather content in the idea that Europe is well represented in the fierce global automotive arena, not because we are or will ever be shareholders of Mercedes or Volkswagen, but rather because when we see an […]

European Commission: the LED lights of your Audi A6 shall save our planet

How many of you took your stunning black Audi A6 3.0 liter for a ride on the evening of the 11th of April? Do you remember the moment you switched on the LED driving lights and you felt an unprecedented bliss thinking that you are not only rich but you are also protecting the environment? […]

EU car manufacturers worry about an FTA with Japan

The European Automobile Manufacturers’ Association (ACEA), had expressed reserves over the EU Council and Commission initiative to start negotiations with Japan in order the two sides to conclude a far reaching Free Trade Agreement (FTA). ACEA was founded in 1991 and represents authentically the interests of the fifteen major European car, truck and bus manufacturers […]

Commissioner sings “Volar-e” but the European driver no “Cantar-e”

It was the last day of February when the European Commission decided to organize a pompous event to test the “amazing” performance of a new electric race car in the Formula 1 Circuit de Catalunya in Barcelona. Its name is Volar-e and I am sure Antonio Tajani, the Commissioner responsible for Industry and Entrepreneurship that […]

European car industry: The Germans want it all

That the German cars are gas guzzlers is a fact beyond reasonable doubt, not because they are badly engineered, that they are not, but simply because they are usually powered by engines of many thousands of cm2 cylinders. Those powerful Mercedes, BMWs, Porsches, Audis and even Volkswagens produce hundreds of PSIs, but at the same time they […]

Is a uniform CO2 emission linked car taxation possible in the EU?

Motor vehicles have being for decades the easy target of many forms of taxation, especially in post WWII Western Europe. Taxes on acquisition, on ownership, on motoring, on licences are but a few. The initial idea behind, in the minds of politicians who supported the imposition of taxes on cars, was that private ownership of […]

The vehicles of our future

Out of the fourteen altogether topics that the European Union policies and rules cover, the huge automotive sector is affected directly or indirectly by nine of them. Let’s count: Business, Economy-finance-competition, Employment, Energy and natural resources, Environment-consumers-health, External relations and foreign affairs, Regions and local development, Sciences and technology, Transport and travel. The car industry and markets […]