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Volkswagen AG is expected to pay up to USD$15 billion (more than RM61 billion) as settlement to owners of diesel Volkswagen vehicles, as well as government regulators due to its diesel emissions cheating scandal. This will likely be one of the largest consumer class-action settlements ever in the United States.

According to reports by Reuters and The New York Times, the settlement includes a maximum of USD$10.03 billion (around RM40 billion) to buy back about 475,000 affected Volkswagens from owners at pre-scandal prices. Additionally, a separate settlement with US state attorneys is expected to be more than USD$500 million (around RM2 billion).

For vehicle owners, a cash compensation will likely be offered to each, ranging from USD$5,100 (RM20,776) to USD$10,000 (RM40,747). Previous owners who may have sold their diesel vehicles after the scandal became known last year are also eligible for compensation, but at only half the rate of the compensation being offered to current car owners.

Owners will have until December 2018 to decide whether to sell back vehicles or have their vehicles fixed to meet emissions standards. Even so, regulators have yet to approve fixes for Volkswagen vehicles fitted with the 2.0 litre turbocharged four-cylinder diesel engine. There are three generations of said engine fitted in vehicles from the year 2009-2015, all possibly requiring different fixes.

Even after the imminent announcement, Volkswagen must still come to a consensus with US regulators on whether it will offer to buy back 85,000 larger Porsche, Audi and Volkswagen cars and SUVs due to the 3.0 litre TDI V6 engine, where it was discovered that the engine’s nitrogen oxide (NOx) emissions is up to nine times of the EPA’s standard.