South Korean Volkswagen Owners Lose 'Document Forgery' Lawsuit | Be Korea-savvy

South Korean Volkswagen Owners Lose ‘Document Forgery’ Lawsuit

This photo provided by Volkswagen Group Korea shows the German carmaker's outlet in Seoul.

This photo provided by Volkswagen Group Korea shows the German carmaker’s outlet in Seoul.

SEOUL, July 26 (Korea Bizwire)South Korean owners of Volkswagen vehicles have faced disappointment in their lawsuit filed for compensation over the local unit of German carmaker’s manipulation of emissions documents, which resulted in the revocation of emissions certifications.

The Seoul Central District Court ruled in favor of Volkswagen Group Korea and a Volkswagen dealership in a lawsuit brought by 28 owners and lessees of Volkswagen Golf 1.4 TSI cars.

During the import of Golf models in 2014 and 2015, the company manipulated test performance records and altered the engine control unit (ECU) software to obtain emissions certifications.

Consequently, in August 2016, the Ministry of Environment revoked the certifications, citing document forgery.

In the same year, a group of vehicle owners filed a lawsuit seeking compensation of approximately 30 million won (US$23,460) per person, claiming mental damages caused by the carmakers’ deceptive practices.

The court, however, acknowledged that the company had submitted a manipulated document during the certification process. Nonetheless, during re-testing, the vehicles met the emissions standards.

Therefore, the court added that even though the certification was revoked, it would be challenging to conclude that the company had intentionally deceived customers.

Kevin Lee (

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