Volkswagen announces its biggest recall in China | Business| Economy and finance news from a German perspective | DW | 20.03.2013
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Volkswagen announces its biggest recall in China

German carmaker Volkswagen has said it will have to recall close to 400,000 vehicles in China. The company cited gearbox defects which had also been reported on Chinese television in a special program.

Europe's largest auto maker announced Wednesday the move would affect 384,181 vehicles in China, marking VW's most comprehensive ever recall in the world's biggest car market.

The announcement came after China Central television last Friday alleged in a corporate malpractice program that Volkswagen had used sub-standard gearboxes in some models, with the potential of causing acceleration problems and accidents.

VW said its recall was not initiated by the television report, but claimed it had had the problem on the radar much earlier. "We monitored it, and so it was obvious that we wanted to decide the recall," Volkswagen China Investment's Christoph Ludwig said in a statement.

Important market

VW admitted that in isolated cases an electronic malfunction in the control unit or a lack of oil pressure inside the gearbox mechatronics might result in power interruption, but hastened to add that steering and braking systems were not impacted.

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The future of VW is overseas

According to Chinese media reports, the vehicles affected include both imported models such as the Audi A3 and domestically made cars such as the Magotan and Passat, with the vehicles coming off the assembly line between December 2008 and early this month.

The recall comes amid the German carmaker's drive to expand its business activities in China where it already has two joint passenger car production ventures with SAIC Motor and the FAW Group. VW announced earlier this month it was planning to open seven new plants in China over the next couple of years.

hg/dr   (AFP, dpa)

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