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Audi Volkswagen to launch first new car since scandal in S. Korea

All News 10:04 January 13, 2017

SEOUL, Jan. 13 (Yonhap) -- Audi Volkswagen Korea, the local importer and distributor of the German brands, is moving to introduce a new car in South Korea that will mark the first car to be launched here since its emissions scandal that has led to a sales ban on most of its vehicle models, informed sources said Friday.

According to the sources, the company recently had its 2017 model year A7 55 TDI Quattro certified by the environment ministry for emissions and noise levels, and is now in the process of having the car registered with the transportation ministry, the last step before its launch.

They said the company may be ready to begin selling the new car as early as late January.

Audi Volkswagen to launch first new car since scandal in S. Korea - 1

The car, if launched, will be the first new car to be introduced here by the local importer of Audi and Volkswagen cars since the company had its sales license revoked last year for fabricating test results of emissions, noise and fuel efficiency of its cars sold here.

The country's environment ministry withdrew its approval for local sales of 80 Audi and Volkswagen cars in August 2016, literally driving the company's local sales to naught.

In December, 236 Audi cars were registered here, down 91.8 percent from 2,887 sold in the same month last year, while sales of Volkswagen cars came to zero, compared with 2,635 units sold a year earlier, according to related data released earlier by the Korea Automobile Importers and Distributors Association.

Meanwhile, the environment ministry approved a plan by Audi Volkswagen Korea to recall some 27,000 Volkswagen Tiguan cars sold here over the emissions scandal earlier this week, which many believe may allow the company to resume its sales of the vehicle here following a reauthorization of sales.

bdk@yna.co.kr
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