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Volkswagen settles fuel economy lawsuit for $97M

Plaintiffs will get up to $24 for each month of ownership.

Volkswagen Group has reached a $96.5 million settlement in a private lawsuit over exaggerated fuel-economy ratings for certain Audi, Bentley, Porsche and VW models with gasoline engines.

The settlement involves around 98,000 vehicles sold in the US market from the 2013-2017 model years.

Affected owners will receive payments ranging from $5.40 to $24.30 for each month their vehicle was owned or leased.

"Volkswagen is committed to providing customers with transparent fuel economy data for our vehicles, in line with US labeling requirements," VWGoA communications executive vice president Pietro Zollino said in a statement.

The Environmental Protection Agency has announced that VW Group will be required to forfeit emissions credits for under-reporting fuel efficiency. The agency will also revise its official miles-per-gallon estimates for the vehicles.

The issue was discovered in the wake of the diesel emissions scandal when the EPA and California Air Resources Board found that some gasoline vehicles employed software that changed the transmission shift mapping to maximize fuel economy during emissions tests but reverted to a less-efficient pattern for day-to-day driving.

The list of models includes the Audi A8L, S8 and RS7; the Bentley Continental and Flying Spur; the Porsche Cayenne; and the Volkswagen Touareg. Most of the revisions drop the combined rating by a single mpg or less.

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