How To Cash In On VW’s Dirty Diesel Settlement

Blue and white Volkswagen sign

VOLKSWAGEN CHEATED, GOT caught, and is now ready to make amends. Or, as drivers of the company’s so-called clean diesels can think of it: jackpot.

Under a proposed $15 billion settlement filed today, VW will buy back or fix about 475,000 of the diesel-powered cars it programmed to cheat on emissions tests and sold in the US between 2009 and 2015. If you own, lease, or have owned or leased one of those definitely not clean diesels, here’s how to get your restitution.

On July 26, Judge Charles Breyer will hold a hearing in San Francisco to discuss the proposed settlement, which concerns 2.0-liter diesels—VW hasn’t yet figured out what to do with the 3.0-liter cars that also cheated. If Breyer grants preliminary approval, VW will mail out explainers to current owners and lessees laying out their rights to comment, object, or opt out of the program. Then Breyer will hold a second hearing, likely this fall, to consider any comments about the fairness and adequacy of VW’s proposal, and give his final approval.

If Breyer gives the green light, you can start cashing in. First off, make sure your car’s covered by punching your vehicle identification number into VW’s Holy Moses We Messed Up microsite. This deal covers these 2.0-liter models:

VW Beetle (2013 – 2015)
VW Golf (2010 – 2015)
VW Jetta (2009 – 2015)
VW Passat (2012 – 2015)
Audi A3 (2010 – 2013; 2015)

If you’re leasing, VW will terminate the deal without a fee (doy). If you’re an owner, the automaker will buy back your car at its pre-scandal value, based on options and mileage. Either way, you get a cash payment as an apology for the whole scamming-you-and-destroying-the-atmosphere thing.

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Article Credits: Alex Davies, Wired