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What Is the BMW Diesel Emissions Scandal?

Author: Samuel Beckingham
Updated: May 29, 2023
6 minutes read
  • Background behind a BMW diesel emissions claim
  • How to make a BMW diesel emissions claim in the UK
  • Why a diesel emissions claim against BMW is important

Dieselgate had massive ramifications in the automotive industry that are still being felt today. BMW is now under investigation for suspicious levels of nitrous oxide (NOₓ) emissions seen in their vehicles. Alleged defeat devices have become a cause for concern as they’ve been present in the cars of other manufacturers. Now you can make a BMW diesel emissions claim for compensation.

This article will explain how you might be eligible to make a diesel emissions claim off BMW. It will detail why they are being investigated and highlight why you should make a claim, as well as how. Once you fully understand your situation, you can be confident in making a BMW diesel emissions claim.

BMW logo on the bonnet of a blue car

Why Can I Make a BMW Diesel Emissions Claim?

Since the VW dieselgate scandal, trust in car manufacturers has gotten worse. More companies are being investigated to see if they have tampered with their vehicles to make their emissions seem better than they are. With VW settling its case outside of court and Mercedes currently going through court proceedings, registering your interest for a BMW diesel emissions claim is the first step in taking action against the company.

What’s the Evidence Against BMW?

Before you start making a BMW diesel emissions claim in the UK, you might be interested in learning about their actions in the past, as seen throughout Germany.

2017 – VW and BMW Collusion

In 2017, BMW, Mercedes and Volkswagen were all investigated in Germany over reportedly colluding about diesel emission limits. They were fined £750 million in 2019 for trying to limit the adoption of clean energy technology. Daimler, parent company of Mercedes, was not fined as it tipped off the authorities.

2018 – BMW Emissions Raid

BMW was also raided separately in 2018, where investigators searched for emissions cheating software. The BMW Group admitted to installing emissions cheating software to its vehicles, but only by mistake

“In the course of internal testing, the BMW Group realised that a correctly developed software module had been allocated in error to models for which it was not suited.”

BMW Group

BMW Headquarters
BMW Headquarters in Munich

A mere 11,400 vehicles had then been recalled, paling in comparison to Volkswagen’s 11 million affected diesel cars worldwide. As BMW has been implicated a number of times, it begs the question about whether this is the tip of the iceberg. Instead of allowing car manufacturers like this to carry on as they are, making a BMW diesel emissions claim can bring about corporate accountability.

2017 – Emissions Testing

The allegations don’t stop there. Research in 2017 from Deutsche Umwelthilfe (DUH), or German Environmental Aid, found that a BMW diesel can be up to 7.2 times more polluting on the road than the legally permitted limit of NOₓ emissions. In testing conditions, the vehicle passed emissions standards, which gave a suspicious indication of emissions defeating software or devices. A BMW diesel emissions claim will shed light on whether such software is in widespread use or was fitted by mistake.

“The results give very clear signs of unlawful defeat devices in the engine control software.”

Jüergen Resch - DUH Managing Director

Am I Eligible to Make a BMW Diesel Emissions Claim?

You will qualify for a BMW diesel emissions claim if you believe you have been misled in any way by the manufacturer. By owning and using a car that has potentially been emitting more emissions than expected, and having a worse fuel economy, BMW has demonstrated an unfair relationship. You may also be asking yourself if such a claim is legitimate.

Whether you owned, bought or financed a BMW diesel vehicle between the years 2008 and 2020, you can make a BMW diesel emissions claim. You can claim deceit against the group or a breach of contract through the dealership or financier. Your name will be put against a list of hundreds of thousands of others in the same situation, which will then be presented to court, much like in the Mercedes case.

You can claim if you:

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  • Were the registered owner of a diesel vehicle between 2008 and 2020

  • Bought your vehicle outright

  • Financed it

  • Leased the car

  • Had a brand new BMW

  • Bought second hand

It’s important to understand that a BMW diesel emissions claim is made because you were affected by the emissions of the vehicle. Had you known about the true levels of pollution and potentially worse fuel economy, you would never have owned the car in the first place.

Is My Diesel Claim Worth It?

Claims like these are still in the early days of development, so you may feel as though a BMW diesel emissions claim isn’t worth the hassle. The problem with this view is that you could be missing out on not only compensation, but enacting corporate accountability.

How Much Compensation You Could Receive

BMW M3 Vector

Some sources estimate that you could receive up to 75% of the car’s worth in compensation, but it depends on your circumstances, when you owned the vehicle and whether the BMW diesel emissions scandal is settled in court. It is impossible to say on a case-by-case basis how much anyone could receive.

If your BMW diesel emissions claim is settled outside of court, you could potentially see thousands of pounds, similar to the VW dieselgate settlement. In May 2022, everyone involved in the Volkswagen diesel emissions scandal received around £2,100 each. Any payout settled through courts would be much higher.

Corporate Accountability

The diesel emissions scandal has been ongoing since 2014, which means that vehicle manufacturers have been dragging their heels and fighting their corners for almost a full decade. In that time, only one vehicle manufacturer has been brought to justice. Other companies are being investigated, such as Vauxhall, but it’s important that any and all wrongdoers are found out.

Multi-billion pound corporations should not be able to obstruct justice, and by making a BMW diesel emissions claim, you can help hold the company to account. Your name will be put towards a join claim to increase the chances of success.

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