One month later, everyone is publicly stating that the original estimate is too low, starting with new Volkswagen Group CEO Matthias Müller. He told a group of journalists on a factory tour last week that the 6.5 billion euro set-aside is just for the recall, but he had no numbers yet "about any further provisions."
Credit Suisse then sent a note to investors with its estimate of costs, the best-case scenario being a 23-billion-euro hit to the company, the worst case being a 78-billion-euro ($87B US) bloodbath. Credit Suisse said that the final costs "are unclear," but this is the range it believes takes into account the software and hardware fix - which is still unknown - setting owners right, and dealing with litigation. The bank thinks the largest line-item will be reimbursing owners, a tab that could tally 33 billion euros according to that highest estimate. Even at a cost of 6.5 billion euros, the VW bill will exceed every total bill for corporate malfeasance save for British Petroleum's $53.8 billion Deepwater Horizon debacle. A VW spokesperson called the Credit Suisse estimates "nonsense."