Volkswagen Emissions Investigations Should Widen to Entire Auto Industry …

22 Sep 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

Call for wider probe after VW revelations.

Paris – France’s finance minister on Tuesday called for a “Europe-wide” probe after revelations that hundreds of thousands of Volkswagen diesel cars had software that secretly thwarts US pollution tests.The US chief executive of Volkswagen has said the company has “totally screwed up” over the emissions scandal that has rocked the automotive industry. Michel Sapin told French radio that in order to “reassure” the public, it seemed “necessary” to carry out checks on cars manufactured by other European carmakers. “Even if it’s just to reassure people, it seems necessary to me that (checks should be carried out) also on French carmakers,” he said, adding he had no “particular reason” to suspect wrongdoing.

The world’s second-biggest carmaker could face a fine of up to $18bn (£11.6bn), criminal charges for its executives, and legal action from customers and shareholders due to US claims it used a defeat device to falsify emissions data. According to US authorities, VW admitted that it had equipped about 482 000 cars in the United States with sophisticated software that covertly turns off pollution controls when the car is being driven and turns them on only when it detects that the car is undergoing an emissions test. With the so-called “defeat device” deactivated, the car can spew pollutant gases into the air, including nitrogen oxide in amounts as much as 40 percent higher than emissions standards, said the US Environmental Protection Agency. What we are dealing with is making sure people avoid being poisoned by pollution.” South Korea said on Tuesday it would investigate emissions of the VW Jetta and Gold models plus Audi A3 cars produced in 2014 and 2015. If problems are found, South Korea’s environment ministry said its inquiry could be expanded to all German diesel imports, which have surged in popularity in recent years in a market long dominated by local producers such as Hyundai.

The House energy and commerce committee chairman, Fred Upton, and the oversight and investigations subcommittee chairman, Tim Murphy, announced that the oversight and investigations subcommittee will hold a hearing. Verified email addresses: All users on Independent Media news sites are now required to have a verified email address before being allowed to comment on articles. Horn, speaking at an event to launch a new version of the Passat sedan, which featured rock star Lenny Kravitz, said: “Our company was dishonest with the EPA, and the California air resources board and with all of you, and in my German words: we have totally screwed up. “We must fix the cars to prevent this from ever happening again and we have to make this right. One of the officials involved in uncovering the alleged behaviour has told the Guardian that the emissions-fixing scandal could extend to other companies and countries. Billions of pounds have been wiped off the value of global carmakers amid growing concerns that emissions tests may have been rigged across the industry. “We need to ask the question, is this happening in other countries and is this happening at other manufacturers?

A British expert in low-emission vehicles claimed the manipulation of air pollution data could be widespread and that tests in Europe are “much more open to this sort of abuse”. All credit to the EPA for investigating and finding the truth.” Archer, the former managing director of the UK’s Low Carbon Vehicle Partnership and non-executive director for the government’s Renewable Fuels Agency, said the scandal could spread into petrol cars and CO2 levels. “It is probably not limited to diesel and not limited to emissions,” he added.

These testing companies have been verified by regulators in each country, such as the Vehicle Certification Agency, but in the US the tests are conducted by an independent body. There is no evidence that manufacturers cheat the cycle. “The industry acknowledges, however, that the current test method is outdated and is seeking agreement from the European commission for a new emissions test that embraces new testing technologies and is more representative of on-road conditions.” The US allegations involve a series of diesel cars produced by VW and the brands it owns, such as Audi.

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