The Environmental Protection Agency has reportedly given Volkswagen a way to make up for its emission-cheating scandal: making electric cars in the U.S.
The agency and the German automaker are currently working on an arrangement to settle the issue, which was brought about when the company gave some of its cars software that allowed them to emit less pollutants during tests than on the road, German newspaper Welt am Sonntag reported, according to Reuters.
The scandal broke five months ago in the U.S., and VW has yet to provide a fix to the 600,000 diesel cars that were given the software. These vehicles emit up to 40 times legal pollution limits.
The automaker has faced several setbacks since the scandal was revealed, which included former CEO Martin Winterkorn resigning as well as investigations in the U.S., Germany and France. VW has also experienced recalls in India and the U.S. The scandal has affected about 11 million cars around the world, with 8.5 million of them being in Europe.
Welt am Sonntag said that the EPA has asked VW to produce electric vehicles at its factory in Chattanooga, Tenn., as well as help build a charging station network for EVs across the U.S., The International Business Times reported. The paper did not provide a source for its report.
VW currently has cars that feature electric or hybrid motors, and it was unclear if the EPA asked the company to build new models or equip existing ones.
"Talks with the EPA are ongoing and we are not commenting on the contents and state of the negotiations," a VW spokesman reportedly said. The EPA also declined to comment on the talks.
The report also comes as weekly tabloid Bild am Sonntag claimed that German transport minister Alexander Dobrindt summoned Hans Dieter Poetsch, the chairman of VW's supervisory board on Tuesday, Feb. 16, to give an update on how the company has been handling the issue, Reuters noted. Poetsch reportedly said that VW will do everything it can to fix the problem, regardless of how that will affect individuals and positions at the automaker.