Volkswagen’s ongoing diesel emissions scandal puttered forward again today as a US federal judge finally approved the $14.7 billion settlement between the automaker and owners of some 475,000 diesel vehicles. According to Reuters, Volkswagen will start buying back those fraudulent vehicles around the middle of November.
To refresh: the massive settlement is one of the largest consumer class-action settlements ever in the United States. Just over $10 billion of the cost will go towards the aforementioned vehicle buybacks and compensating VW owners, while the other $4.7 billion will used to offset emissions and build more zero emission vehicle infrastructure. That cost does not include another $1.8 billion in legal fees related to the scandal, and the car company could still face billions more in settlement costs for another 85,000 vehicles. Then there’s the matter of VW’s investors suing for $9.1 billion more in a German court, plus lawsuits from 16 more US states.
While the costs keep piling up, Volkswagen does have an ambitious plan to roll out 30 different electric vehicles in the next 10 years, including the futuristic I.D. in 2020. Still, it will take a lot of EVs to offset the damage done by nearly half a million vehicles pumping out a whopping 40 times the legal emissions.