By on July 13, 2017

2013 Mercedes-Benz GLK. Photo courtesy Mercedes-Benz.

After a pair of Mercedes-Benz engines garnered increased scrutiny from regulatory agencies, the German government has summoned executives from Daimler to account for its activities as a new diesel emissions probe picks up steam.

The automaker has confirmed several of its representatives are attending a hearing on Thursday afternoon to speak with the German Transport Ministry — just one day after news broke that Stuttgart investigators believed some diesel-powered Mercedes vehicles may have been equipped with defeat devices between 2008 and 2016.

The investigation centers around the OM642 V6 and OM651 inline-four turbo-diesels, both of which are under suspicion of being equipped with illegal technology used to circumvent emissions testing. Interesting, Mercedes gave up on certifying diesel-driven vehicles in the United States this year after four models Benz had hoped to sell failed to obtain regulatory approval.  (Read More…)

By on May 11, 2017

Matthias Müller, Image: Volkswagen AG/Wikimedia Commons (CC BY 3.0)

Volkswagen Group CEO Matthias Müller is under investigation in Germany over the possibility he withheld important information on the company’s emissions scandal to investors, as well as potential market manipulation relating to Porsche. While public prosecutors continued to broaden their search among high-ranking company officials, the inclusion of the CEO is a bit of a surprise.

It was widely believed Müller would be free from scrutiny as he was appointed to replace ex-CEO Martin Winterkorn shortly after the emissions scandal went public in September 2015. Initially, German investigators even stated the CEO was not suspected of any wrongdoing. Then, in March of 2017, prosecutors launched a raid that seized the mobile phones, electronic passwords, appointment books, and email files of numerous Volkswagen and Audi employees — including Müller.  (Read More…)

By on March 9, 2017

Exhaust pipe of running vehicle, Image: By Ruben de Rijcke (Own work) [CC BY-SA 3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

The Office of the Inspector General is preparing to conduct preliminary research to determine whether the Environmental Protection Agency’s internal controls are effective at detecting and preventing emissions fraud.

While the EPA has proven itself capable of stopping cheaters in the past, the federal oversight group wants to check in on the National Vehicle and Fuel Emissions Laboratory in Ann Arbor, Michigan and the Office of Transportation and Air Quality in Washington D.C.

This investigation comes amid the current administration’s proposal of a 25 percent reduction in the EPA’s $8 billion budget, the elimination of almost 3,000 jobs, and the suspension of agency-backed programs and departments — including the environmental justice office. Automakers are also begging President Trump to rollback emissions standards after 2016 ended up being the first year since 2004 that U.S. light vehicles did not exceeded the industry-wide fuel economy targets. Regardless of intent, any appraisal of the EPA’s ability to act effectively will either serve to validate its existence or help rationalize its dismantlement.  (Read More…)

By on September 27, 2015

Volkswagen CrossBlue Concept

While the EPA recently revealed Volkswagen’s diesels were cheating emissions tests, two newspapers learned VW was warned about cheating as early as 2007.

(Read More…)

By on June 22, 2015

BMW 325Ci on Fire

Last Friday, the U.S. Transportation Department’s Office of Inspector General dropped the sledgehammer on the NHTSA over its failings in automotive safety.

(Read More…)

By on April 8, 2015

Jeremy Clarkson

Former “Top Gear” host Jeremy Clarkson may be out of a TV job, but at least he won’t be going to jail anytime soon.

(Read More…)

By on March 27, 2015

Cory Fairbanks Mazda Dealership

The Federal Trade Commission announced Thursday its results from Operation Ruse Control, a collection of investigations over deceptive dealer practices.

(Read More…)

By on March 24, 2015

2013 Nissan Altima 3.5 SL, Exterior, front 3/4, Picture Courtesy of Alex L. Dykes

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration is looking into Nissan’s March 2014 airbag software recall to determine its effectiveness.

(Read More…)

By on January 30, 2015

JAPAN-US-AUTO-RECALL-TAKATA-REGULATE-AUTOMOBILE

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration is seeking whistleblowers who have knowledge “of possible defects or any wrongdoing” about Takata.

(Read More…)

By on December 1, 2014

Billboard advertisement of Takata Corp is pictured in Tokyo

Takata and those associated with its airbag recall crisis are heading back into the fire this week, one that could grow into a firestorm soon enough.

(Read More…)

By on November 26, 2014

Japanese-government-weighs-in-on-Takata-airbag-debacle

Takata and Honda are both coming under the gun at home, on order of Japan Transport Minister Akihiro Ota.

(Read More…)

By on November 26, 2014

2013 Tesla Model S P85 Fishing boat

Tesla may be under investigation by the Securities and Exchange Commission, based upon speculation by an online publication whose modus operandi involves filing Freedom of Information Act requests.

(Read More…)

By on November 25, 2014

honda-ridgeline-2006-001

Due to its narrow interpretation of the TREAD Act, Honda admitted to underreporting the number of claims linked to injuries and/or deaths caused by safety issues in its products since 2003.

(Read More…)

By on November 4, 2014

2013 Honda Civic sedan

Takata is no longer alone in facing an intense federal investigation over in its airbag recall action: Honda, too, has been ordered to answer under oath for its role in the recall.

(Read More…)

By on October 31, 2014

takata sign holder

Investigators unearth more reports of deaths and injuries linked to catastrophic detonations of Takata’s airbags; the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration sets a deadline for the supplier to submit related documents; and attorneys urge a U.S. district judge to act quickly on a class action against Takata and four of its client automakers.

(Read More…)

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