In a recent scandal it was revealed that the German auto maker Volkswagen has been using illegal tricks to defeat emissions tests. The company used special software inserted in their diesel engines to give false readings of the harmful nitrogen oxide emissions made by the car. According to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), some cars being sold in America had devices in diesel engines that could detect when they were being tested, changing the performance accordingly to improve results.
Last week the company admitted to using the software and the CEO resigned from the job. It is now reported that VW’s internal investigation has found a 2007 letter from Bosch parts supplier warning the company not to use the software. Additionally a VW technician raised concerns about the illegal practices back in 2011. The company continued with the illegal activity even after these concerns were raised. It is estimated that as many as 11 million cars built since 2008 are affected by the scandal.
This relates to our class because it is an example of how a company can affect its image based on its ethical, or in this case unethical, practices. Volkswagen was not thinking about all of its stakeholders in this situation and because of this they were seriously hurt by a scandal.