Volkswagen to slash 30,000 from workforce in Dieselgate fallout

Cost-cutting continues as VW pours more resources into electric cars and ride-sharing.

Jon Wong Former editor for CNET Cars
Jon Wong was a reviews editor for CNET Cars. He test drove and wrote about new cars and oversaw coverage of automotive accessories and garage gear. In his spare time, he enjoys track days, caring for his fleet of old Japanese cars and searching for the next one to add to his garage.
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Volkswagen today revealed plans to slash its workforce by 30,000 people, with 23,000 of the cuts coming in Germany, AP reports.

It's the latest blow in a barrage of bad news for the German automaker as it struggles to contain the fallout of the Dieselgate emissions scandal. Recent announcements have included its brand Audi abandoning its racing activities in the World Endurance Championship, and Volkswagen ending its involvement in the World Rally Championship.

Volkswagen says the job reductions are part of a restructuring to slash nonessential costs and pour more resources into developing battery electric cars, as well as ride- and car-sharing services.

Herbert Diess, head of the Volkswagen brand, told AP the company had "lost ground in terms of productivity" and had to make the cuts to become "leaner and more efficient."

This follows the black eye the company's diesel drivetrains have received worldwide for intentionally cheating lab tests, only to pollute well in excess of the legal limit on the road.

The Dieselgate fallout has cost the company billions. In the US alone, Volkswagen will have to spend at least $15 billion to clean up the mess left behind by its cheating diesels. With millions more cars around the world affected by the fraudulent emissions software, don't be surprised if the tightening of VW's financial belt isn't done yet.