23 September 2015 07:13:20 IST

I’m endlessly sorry, says Volkswagen CEO

VW setting aside around $7.3 billion to cover fallout

Volkswagen AG’s emissions scandal crisis escalated today as the company issued a profit warning, set aside billions to cover the fallout and lost billions more in market value.

VW’s CEO said he is “endlessly sorry” that the world’s top-selling carmaker squandered worldwide trust in its brand.

The rapid-fire developments came as Volkwagen stunningly admitted that some 11 million of the German carmaker’s diesel vehicles worldwide contain software that evades emissions controls, not just the half a million cars that the US.

Environmental Protection Agency said violates the Clean Air Act.

As its share price sunk for a second straight day, Volkswagen said it was setting aside around 6.5 billion euros ($7.3 billion) to cover the fallout. CEO Martin Winterkorn apologised for the deception under his leadership and pledged a fast and thorough investigation, but gave no indication that he might resign.

“Millions of people across the world trust our brands, our cars and our technologies,” Winterkorn said Tuesday in a video message. “I am endlessly sorry that we have disappointed this trust. I apologize in every way to our customers, to authorities and the whole public for the wrongdoing.”

“We are asking, I am asking for your trust on our way forward,” he said. “We will clear this up.”

VW has yet to explain who installed the software, under what direction, and why.

“I do not have the answers to all the questions at this point myself, but we are in the process of clearing up the background relentlessly,” Winterkorn said.