Contrary to the popular mantra, there is a replacement for displacement. The problem is tiny engines that harness technology to boost power output aren’t the greenest things on the road. In fact, the emissions created by small two, three and four-cylinder engines are often out of all proportion to the mills’ Lilliputian displacement.
Volkswagen, realizing it’s staring down the barrel of regulatory non-compliance, has vowed to stop searching for the latest gas- and diesel-powered micro-wonder. Small is out. Normal-sized is in. (Read More…)
President-elect Donald Trump’s pick to head the Environmental Protection Agency, Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruitt, said he plans to review the Obama administration’s recent decision to secure fuel efficiency standards through 2025.
Last week, outgoing EPA administrator Gina McCarthy bumped up the timeline for the final determination on the fuel efficiency rule in the hopes of maintaining the Obama administration’s climate legacy.
“It merits review and I would review that,” Pruitt said at yesterday’s Senate confirmation hearing. Later that same day, Pruitt confirmed that he would not permit California to continue operating under its own rules as part of its 2009 advanced clean cars program and zero emission vehicle mandates.
As predicted, California isn’t interested in being told what to do. (Read More…)
Volkswagen Group has agreed to shell out $200 million into a reserve created to reduce diesel pollution, a stipulation in the pending agreements made over the 3.0-liter diesels that polluted well over the United State’s legal limit.
The finalized agreement between VW and U.S. lawmakers is expected to come by Monday, pending the company’s decision on what to do about the 80,000 Audi, Volkswagen, and Porsche vehicles with emissions-cheating diesel engines still on the road. Legal representatives for the carmaker, affected consumers, and the Justice Department have indicated that negotiations are still progressing, however VW may still have to go to trial if a final agreement isn’t reached soon. (Read More…)
If you think engine displacements have become a little too European over here, you’d hate to see the motorcycle-worthy powerplants motivating econoboxes on the other side of the pond.
Paired with the magic of modern technology, inline threes and parallel twins can now make enough grunt to move respectably sized vehicles. However, those days could soon be over, all thanks to ambitious regulators and the downsized engines’ tendency to spew man-sized amounts of pollution.
And if you think this isn’t America’s problem, think again. (Read More…)
Faced with the option of waiting to see if their cars can be fixed or accepting a hefty cash payout, diesel Volkswagen owners are opting to take the money and run.
Once-fierce loyalty to the dirty “clean diesels” seems to have evaporated, as most owners who’ve registered for the settlement want the automaker to buy back their car, Automotive News reports. (Read More…)
Is this big rig the real life? Or is it just fantasy?
Nikola Motors, the company that recently sprouted out of the proverbial ether to announce a $350,000+ turbine-electric-powered Class 8 truck, claims it’s taken in $2.3 billion in pre-orders. Say what now?
That, the air in Mexico is thick with pollution, Nissan is bridging the gap to hydrogen with a corny solution, and BMW has solved the leasing bubble … after the break!
The world’s oldest automaker isn’t about to let regulators pry its diesel engines from its warm, German hands.
Mercedes-Benz is rolling out a new line of oil-burning engines that will surpass even the most stringent emissions requirements, AutoExpress reports.
So stingy are the new diesels, the automaker says they’ll pass looming European Union requirements that aren’t scheduled to go into effect until 2017. (Read More…)
Dirty Volkswagen diesels equipped with illicit “defeat devices” could soon be flying off driveways and into oblivion.
Sources briefed on the matter told Reuters (via Automotive News) that the automaker will offer to buy back up to half a million 2.0-liter TDI models in the U.S. that emit illegal levels of smog-causing emissions.
They expect that Volkswagen will make the offer tomorrow before a federal judge. The company’s deadline for a U.S. fix is tomorrow, and a failure to act will result in a trial the automaker desperately wants to avoid. (Read More…)
After missing today’s deadline for a U.S. emissions fix, Volkswagen has been issued a new one, and will now face a summer trial if the date passes without a plan to cure its diesel ills.
The extension of the deadline until April 21 was issued by U.S. District Judge Charles Breyer, who had earlier set the March 24 deadline for the embattled automaker, Reuters is reporting.
The consensus of today’s meeting in California between Volkswagen, the Environmental Protection Agency and the California Air Resources Board was that progress had been made in reaching an agreement on how to deal with 580,000 Volkswagen diesels equipped with pollution-causing defeat devices.
After its excessively dirty diesels polluted the nation’s air for years, Volkswagen is on the verge of making environmental reparations in the U.S. and state of California, Bloomberg reports.
The automaker is reportedly in talks with U.S authorities to create two remediation funds aimed at offsetting some of the environmental (and possibly legal) damage resulting from the diesel emissions scandal. (Read More…)
There’s a chance that older Volkswagen TDI models branded as pollution monsters in the ongoing diesel emissions scandal could keep rolling along the avenues and alleyways of the Golden State.
On March 8, California’s air regulator floated the idea that diesels that can’t fully be brought back into compliance with state laws might get a pass, according to Reuters.
Tod Sax, chief of the California Air Resources Board’s enforcement division, admitted that bringing every one of the state’s approximately 82,000 afflicted diesels up to code is probably not possible. (Read More…)
Last week, Bloomberg Business profiled the one woman who may have more influence in the automaking universe for the next decade than any other person on the planet.
California Air Resources Board Chairwoman Mary Nichols’ story about running the nation’s most stringent air quality standards board is compelling, fascinating and terrifying — if you’re an automaker.
The state’s ambitious goal of reducing greenhouse gases 80 percent by 2050 is met by an equally ambitious — and onerous — goal for automakers: don’t sell new cars with internal combustion engines in California by 2030.
Municipal authorities in Paris banned cars with even numbered license plates from entering the city, in a bit to limit traffic and ease record levels of pollution.
First I wanted to let you know that nearly everyday on my lunch break I check TTAC and each time I see a Piston Slap article I always make sure to read through it. I admire your knowledge and have learned quite a bit from your articles. I guess that I have a two part question.
The first part being since when has it become “acceptable” that a modern (low mileage) engine can consume a quart of oil in less than 5K miles. Audi and VW jump the front on my mind with their 2.0T mills, but I hear more and more through the woodwork about engines drinking oil. The second part of my question probably has more to do with correlation than causation but it seems like direct injection plays a role in this IMO unacceptable oil consumption.
The all-electric future creeps upon us all steadily, from Tesla’s luxury offerings more appropriate for New York Fashion Week, to Nissan’s electric blue and white jelly beans moving eco-conscious families to Whole Foods and Trader Joe’s.
Speaking of Nissan, the automaker has decided to unleash the e-Nv200 upon the streets of Europe in 2014, with both fleet and private sales in mind.