I’m not sure if you’ve heard, but Volkswagen’s going though a bit of a scandal lately. That’s sarcasm, of course you’ve heard, it’s been all over the news, Internet and everything else. Volkswagen lied about the emissions of its diesel models, causing quite a big problem. Soon after, the EPA tested a BMW X5 35d alongside some VW diesel models to compare and the X5 passed the EPA’s tests with flying colors while the VWs failed. In Germany, a diesel-powered BMW X3 was tested as well and the results created quite a controversy of their own.
In reality, the results shouldn’t have caused a stir, as the X3 passed as well. However, German publication, Auto Bild, decided to report that the X3 failed and produced more than 11 times the European limit when tested by the International Council on Clean Transportation (ICCT). This news spread immediately across the internet, faster than unsavory leaked pictures of Ariana Grande, and created a lot of negative buzz surrounding Munich. Since this Auto Bild report came out, BMW’s stock value dropped, quite significantly actually, 9.7 percent which is the most in four years. Naturally BMW wasn’t happy.
Afterward, BMW released a statement, vehemently refuting the article by Auto Bild and cleared the air. “The BMW Group does not manipulate or rig any emissions tests,” the Munich-based company said in a statement in response to the report. “We observe the legal requirements in each country.”
In a detailed report, BMW claimed that there was no difference in the urea exhaust gas treatment when either on the road or on the test bench. Obviously, BMW was upset, but now the actual results have come out and the X3, as well as all other diesel BMW models, pass the emissions tests and exceed expectations. Hopefully, BMW’s stock price changes soon to reflect the truths that have recently come to light.
“There’s no suggestion BMW has done anything illegal,” said Juergen Pieper, a Frankfurt-based analyst with Bankhaus Metzler. However, Pieper did go on to mention that things might not be looking good for diesels. “However, there are concerns for the long-term damage on the business with diesel cars.”
It’s possible that Auto Bild was acting a bit recklessly and put out an article quickly to grab headlines. However, this was an incredibly irresponsible thing to do, as without all of the proper information, Auto Bild ended up doing real damage to BMW by causing stock prices to drop. Regardless of why or how Auto Bild created such an article, it did its damage and now BMW has to fix things. Hopefully, most of the damage is able to be repaired, otherwise Auto Bild should be in some trouble themselves.
Update: BMW has just released another official statement which can be found here.