June 12, 2018—Volkswagen Group recently announced that production of up to 250,000 cars from its brands are likely to be delayed, due to effects from mandatory lab tests for both fuel economy and emissions.
According to a report by the Reuters news service, implementation of the Worldwide Harmonized Light Duty Vehicles Test Procedure (WLTP) in September for new vehicles will temporarily restrict the availability of some models, and could affect working capital by driving up first-half inventories. Automakers are experiencing bottlenecks as they rush to get models through the more elaborate WLTP tests on a limited number of exhaust emissions test benches, as they won’t be able to sell new vehicles after Sept. 1 without the new CO2 emissions and fuel consumption readings.
"Because of the introduction of the new WLTP testing procedure, we expect in the second half of 2018 an effect at the VW group of around 200,000 to 250,000 vehicles that we will build later than originally planned," VW announced.
VW had no comment on potential costs from the disruptions, but German magazine Der Spiegel last week reported that the risk for VW could reach billions, since potential bottlenecks mean hundreds of thousands of cars would reach dealerships either late or not at all.