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Volkswagen shares plunge after emissions tests scandal widens

Published 04/11/2015

Volkswagen's ordinary shares slid 9.7% on Wednesday to 100.80 euro in morning trading in Europe
Volkswagen's ordinary shares slid 9.7% on Wednesday to 100.80 euro in morning trading in Europe

Volkswagen shares have fallen after the company said it had understated carbon dioxide emissions for 800,000 cars, widening its scandal over cheating on US diesel emissions tests.

The company's ordinary shares slid 9.7% on Wednesday to 100.80 euro in morning trading in Europe.

The carmaker said after the European market close on Tuesday that it found "unexplained inconsistencies" in carbon dioxide emissions in some vehicles.

Volkswagen found the additional problem as it investigated revelations that up to 11 million of its vehicles had software that allowed them to deceive emissions testers.

The company has so far been unable to halt the flow of negative surprises since the scandal first became known on September 18, when the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced Volkswagen had installed software on 482,000 cars that enabled it to cheat on emissions tests.

The software would reduce emissions when the car was placed on a test stand, and then allow higher emissions during normal driving.

The announcement follows US allegations that the defective software was also found in some cars with larger engines, including Volkswagen's elite Porsche brand.

CEO Matthias Mueller has promised the company will "relentlessly and completely clarify the matter".

He has said the company must re-examine its corporate culture to prevent such missteps from occurring again.

The news that Porsche vehicles also had the deceptive software was an embarrassment for Mr Mueller, who headed Porsche before he became CEO.

Mr Mueller has said that upper management would not have involved itself in the details of software development and has pointed to "a few" employees who altered the software code.

The company has hired law firm Jones Day to investigate.

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