German prosecutors fine Audi 800 million euros for diesel violations

Emissions test on a VW

Image Audi is part of the VW group which also contains the Seat and Skoda brands in its stable

As a result of the administrative order imposing the fine, "the active regulatory offense proceedings conducted by the Munich II public prosecutor against Audi AG will be finally terminated".

Volkswagen said Tuesday it accepted the fine imposed by German prosecutors, waving its right to appeal. VW admitted to building so-called "defeat devices" into 11 million cars worldwide.

The penalty came on top of total costs in fines, buybacks and refits of more than €27 million that Volkswagen had to pay out over its emissions cheating scandal. These vehicles were equipped with illegal software that curtailed the vehicles' emissions during testing, but when the vehicles hit the road, they polluted more than legally permitted.

The Wolfsburg-based group's 2018 earnings suffered another one-billion-euro blow in June when it agreed to pay a similar fine levied by Brunswick prosecutors over its own-brand vehicles. "By [not appealing], Audi AG admits its responsibility for the deviations from regulatory requirements", the automaker said in a statement. The investigation into Stadler and other executives is ongoing.

Volkswagen cancelled the contract of Audi Chief Executive Rupert Stadler earlier this month who is under inquiry for suspected association in emissions cheating.

Prosecutors had jailed him in June, saying the move was necessary to stop him trying to influence witnesses.

Meanwhile the German government has opened a route for vehicle owners to launch collective cases against the manufacturers, with a first one expected for early November.

What's more, tough new emissions rules are squeezing carmakers to reduce their fleets' output of both greenhouse gas carbon dioxide (CO2) and harmful NOx.

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