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Emissions modifications for some Volkswagens and Audis

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In October 2016, a federal judge ordered Volkswagen to compensate people who own or lease certain Volkswagens or Audis with 2.0-liter TDI-engines. Through September 1, 2018, current owners can apply for a buyback from Volkswagen, and current lessees can apply for lease terminations. Or — if the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) authorizes an approved emission modification (AEM) for their type of car — owners and lessees can have their cars modified and get an AEM payment instead of doing a buyback or lease termination.

So far, the EPA has only authorized a modification for 2.0-liter TDI-engine cars from model years 2015 and 2016. If you have one of these cars, and want the modification and related payment rather than the buyback or lease termination, you can sign up at The modification has two steps, and your car must go through both steps to be fully modified. Step 1 is available now, and Volkswagen expects Step 2 will be available in early 2018. You will get two thirds of the AEM payment after you complete Step 1 and one third of the payment after you complete Step 2.

An AEM will change the way your vehicle engine and emission control systems interact. There may be negative side effects, like your car consuming more diesel exhaust fluid, and decreased effectiveness of the on-board diagnostic system. You can change your mind about whether to get a buyback, lease termination or modification until you complete the buyback or lease termination, or your vehicle completes the first step in an AEM.

The FTC has information and links to related resources about the Volkswagen 2.0L settlement.

Tagged with: car, refunds, settlement
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Money & Credit


I own a 2015 TDi DSG Golf S, If I sell it to a private party, can they do the buyback, or have the fix done and collect money from VW?

I own a 2015 Jetta TDi and have been trying FOR MONTHS to use the settlement website to complete my claim process. When I get to the point in the process where I've selected the AEM option and I click on the "Continue" button, I get "Error Code 8819". When I call the phone number that is also displayed, I'm told that it's a known IT problem and they don't know when it will be resolved. I've been getting this same answer for 2 months. This seems like a delaying tactic by VW to avoid paying out the AEM money. Is the FTC monitoring this process? Will there be additional fines levied by the FTC against VW? What's going on???

On initial sign up, we decided to buyback but when we got the paperwork we switched to the mod. Since then everything has been screwed up. We can't change the portal and when we call the claims person says it's been escalated to a supervisor.... yeah right. He said we can start over, that means the third time we would have to send notarized paperwork (first set never got there). The process is terrible. So annoyed. First AEM fix went well at the dealership though.

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