Volkswagen is taking a cue from BMW and introducing the “Germany Guarantee” which seeks to calm fears over potential diesel bans.
Set to kick off next month in Germany, the guarantee aims to give drivers of new and one year-old diesel vehicles “additional security” as the automaker promises to keep owners on the road in the event of a diesel ban. As the company explains, customers with an eligible vehicle will be able to exchange them for another model if a diesel ban is implemented in their home city or the city where they work.
If such a ban takes place, the customer could go to a participating Volkswagen dealership which would buy back the model for a price determined by the Deutsche Automobil Treuhand (German Automobile Trust). They could then use this money to purchase another vehicle that isn’t affected by driving restrictions. The company also noted customers will be given a “model-dependent trade-in premium with a maximum value corresponding to the previous environmental incentive” if the all necessary conditions are met.
The Germany Guarantee will apply to all new models bought between April 1st and the end of the year. The offer will then be valid for three years after the purchase date.
According to Volkswagen’s German sales and marketing boss, Thomas Zahn, “Volkswagen is committed to diesel and our current engines are among the cleanest on the market. With the Germany Guarantee and the diesel environmental incentive, we are offering our customers security when they choose a diesel and are on their side as a strong partner.”
The program is similar to BMW’s “diesel return promise” which was announced earlier this month. However, that program seemed more generous as customers could evoke the promise if a driving restriction on diesel vehicles was applied within a 100 km (62 mile) radius of their primary residence or place of work.