VW scandal: Cars clearly in breach of Australian standards

Media Release: 27 October

October 27, 2015

Australian legal firm Bannister Law, which is coordinating a potential class action against the Volkswagen Group, said there is no ambiguity: all VW Group cars with the ‘defeat device’ are in breach of Australian standards.

Charles Bannister, firm Founder and Principal said irrespective of the precise emissions levels, the Australian Design Rules explicitly prohibit the use of defeat devices.

“The standards couldn’t be clearer. Both, Australian Design Rule 79/02 (Euro 4) and Australian Design Rule 79/04 (full Euro 5) in identical clauses numbered say ‘The use of a defeat device is prohibited.’ And VW has admitted, it has used defeat devices in over 90,000 Australian cars,” said Mr Bannister.

Mr Bannister also said that despite Australia’s relatively lenient emissions standards, cars affected by the emissions scandal are likely to be over double the local permissible levels.

“In fact the emissions levels tested in the US, would breach Euro 3 standards, which were our standards ten years ago. We are now using Euro 5 as the standard.” (see table below).

“These cars shouldn’t have been allowed onto the market.

“There has been some debate about whether affected cars in Australia require a fix to the cheating software to meet Australian standards. I think it’s crystal clear that these cars aren’t compliant,” said Mr Bannister.

Mr Bannister said that after defining the testing parameters, Australian authorities normally rely on car manufacturers to conduct compliance tests themselves. He suggested there was now merit in Australian authorities commissioning independent, real life road testing that overcomes the cheat software, to understand precisely what VW needs to do to comply with Australian standards.

“Owners of affected cars are looking for greater assurance, and I’m not sure the VW Group has the confidence or trust of consumers anymore.

“Over recent decades, we’ve been tightening these emissions standards after authorities recognised how bad they are for public health and the environment. If allegations around the defeat device are true, this is more than misleading and deceptive conduct – it’s a complete disregard for public health,” said Mr Bannister.

There are over 90,000 affected vehicles in Australia including diesel models from VW, Audi, Škoda and Seat manufactured between 2008 and 2014. Owners of affected vehicles can register their interest in the class action or learn more at vwclassaction.com.au.

Media Inquiries


Andrew Butler, Etched Communications: 0423 296 903, [email protected]
Peter Wilkinson, Wilkinson Group: 0414 383 433, [email protected]


Euro Standard Year of mandatory compliance in Australia NOx grams per km
Euro 2 2003 NA
Euro 3 Never fully adopted 0.50
Euro 4 2010 0.25
Euro 5 Full introduction due Nov 2016 0.18
Euro 6 Begins 1 July 2017 and full introduction due July 2018 0.08


Testing by researchers at West Virginia University revealed an average NOx emission level of 0.56g/km for tested vehicles.