The recall will include five million cars in the Volkswagen brand’s passenger range - including sixth-generation Golf, seventh-generation Passat and first-generation Tiguan - out of a total of 11 million Volkswagen Group vehicles worldwide.
That number makes this one of the largest automotive recalls in history, although it is easily dwarfed by the tens of millions of vehicles being recalled by numerous brands to address the wide-ranging Takata airbag defect.
The news of this Volkswagen Group recall follows confirmation that millions of models in the subsidiary Audi, Skoda and Seat ranges are driven by the same Euro-5 EA189 diesel engine fitted with a ‘defeat device’ programmed to fool emissions tests.
The company has confirmed an action plan that will include informing affected customers that “the emissions characteristics of their vehicles will be corrected” in the near future, although it has yet to reveal specifically how this will be managed, or exactly when owners can expect action.
The plan requires Volkswagen to present its technical solutions and measures to government authorities in October.
“Customers with these vehicles will be kept informed over the coming weeks and months. All of the Group brands affected will set up national websites to update customers on developments,” the company said in a statement today.
Incoming new CEO, Matthias Mueller, is understood to have spoken with around 1000 of the Volkswagen group’s top managers this week to inform them of the company’s plans.
According to business paper Reuters, a manager attending the briefing confirmed that Mueller had described “a long trudge and a lot of hard work”.
"We will only be able to make progress in steps and there will be setbacks," Mueller is reported to have said.
Australian owners remain in the dark for now, with Volkswagen Australia currently confirming only that it is “still awaiting details with regards to our market”.
The company’s local arm has previously confirmed that for, for now, it remains unclear “what impact the current diesel emissions investigation has on our market and specifically which models may be affected”.