BMW Offers Diesel Owners EUR2,000 Environmental Subsidy

By Alberto Delclaux and Marc Bisbal Arias Features Dow Jones Newswires

BMW AG (BMW.XE) said Wednesday that it would offer up to 2,000 euros ($2,363) to owners of some of its older diesel models to subsidize the purchase of new BMW cars that meet updated environmental standards in the European Union.

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Owners of BMW diesel cars that only meet some EU environmental standards--Euro 4 and below--are entitled to the payment if they buy certain BMW or Mini models. The new car may be electric, hybrid or diesel and must meet Euro 6 standards.

BMW's program, which begins by the end of August, will last until the end of December and could be extended.

The news comes amid growing concerns about the harmful health effects of diesel emissions, and nearly two years after Volkswagen AG (VOW.XE) admitted it had outfitted millions of diesel vehicles with software that allowed them to sidestep pollution standards.

BMW said it remains committed to diesel cars despite expanding production of electric and hybrid models.

"For almost two years now, diesel technology which is cutting-edge, highly efficient and popular with customers has been deliberately and publicly discredited," BMW Chief Executive Harald Krueger said. "Future mobility will definitely depend on state-of-the-art diesels as well."

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The company also said it would improve--at no cost to owners--the exhaust-treatment system of the 225,000 Euro 5-rated diesel vehicles currently on the road in Germany. It will also invest in a fund to help German cities better handle traffic volume and reduce emissions.

BMW didn't disclose the costs of these measures.

Write to Alberto Delclaux at alberto.delclaux@dowjones.com and Marc Bisbal Arias at marc.bisbalarias@dowjones.com

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

August 02, 2017 12:58 ET (16:58 GMT)