VW has held its first board meeting since the emissions cheating scandal blew up in its face, a meeting it would have been interesting to attend if only for the language probably used to describe the carmakers’ dire position.
Greenpeace and other environmentalists were there to remind executives of their company’s disgrace and duty to put things right, with a lively demonstration outside.
Matthias Mueller, former Porsche boss, has to turn around the once-world number one carmaker before it collapses under the weight of heavy fines, possibly as much as 35 billion euros, and empty showrooms for new models.
However some adverse public reaction may be abating. In the US, where the scandal started, customers appear to have short memories and are snapping up the bargains VW is offering to get customers back after a bad September.
However that is because the scandal is centered around VW’s diesel engines, and less so its petrol-driven ones, which are far more popular outside Europe. Few people use diesel in America in their personal transport.