Volkswagen Emissions Crisis Reveals Need for Better Customer Communication

In September, Volkswagen shockingly admitted to installing software designed to cheat emissions testing on more than 480,000 vehicles of its 2.0 liter diesel engines. To make matters even more challenging, Volkswagen and Audi executives disclosed to EPA officials that all 3.0-liter diesel engines from model years 2009 through 2016 contain devices that cheat pollution tests. The number of affected vehicles has now risen by 85,000 and negative media attention persists for Volkswagen. In a recent feature by the Houston Chronicle, Pierpont’s crisis expert Terry Hemeyer commented on what Volkswagen should do to make things right with its customers.

Snapshots from the article: Terry Hemeyer, who teaches crisis management at Rice University’s Jones Graduate School of Business, said Volkswagen is in “damage control” mode.

“What they should be doing is contacting customers individually in some way and doing something that makes them feel good about the car they own and what they’re going to do about it,” Hemeyer said.

“Because if they don’t,” he said, “they’re history.”

Read the full Houston Chronicle subscriber only story here: Volkswagen emissions scandal widens