By on November 22, 2015

20 - 1980 Volkswagen Dasher Down On the Junkyard - Pictures courtesy of Murilee Martin

On Friday, Volkswagen of America detailed its plan to fix nearly 500,000 illegally polluting diesels in the United States to officials with the Environmental Protection Agency, the government body announced in a statement late Friday. The automaker was required to detail the fix no later than Friday.

The EPA, along with the California Air Resources Board, will review the proposal, said the statement. However, the EPA did not detail the proposal to the media or public and did not give a timeframe on when to expect the proposal to be detailed publicly.

The proposal only addresses issues detailed by the EPA in its September 18 Notice of Violation that applies to Volkswagen’s 2-liter diesel engines and not the 3-liter diesels which may also be cheating emissions tests.

Late-model vehicles will likely only require a software fix as they’re already equipped with selective catalytic reduction (SCR) systems that use urea to reduce nitrogen oxide emissions. However, the majority of affected cars powered by EA189 diesel engines could require more extensive fixes that may include the installation of SCR systems.

TTAC learned that dealers expect the rollout of fixes to begin in February in the United States. German transport authority KBA has also ordered Volkswagen to roll out fixes faster in that country.

In total, Volkswagen may have to fix 11 million diesel vehicles powered by the group’s 2-liter diesel engines.

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20 Comments on “Volkswagen Beats EPA Buzzer, Details Fix to US Officials...”

  • avatar

    Hey look! A Plymouth Breeze! What an unorganized junkyard.

    • 0 avatar

      The days of having a Ford section, GM section, Chryslbushi section are gone for the most part.

      It is all about the turns now. So in smaller to mid size yards every vehicle that comes in that week goes in one isle. Then when the next week rolls around the oldest row goes to the crusher and the new batch goes there.

      Some of the bigger self serve yards do have enough volume that they still have the vehicles segregated.

      • 0 avatar

        And the less popular vehicles taken in are also taken to the row nearest to the crusher to be recycled before the more popular vehicles.

        For instance, there exists a huge demand for pulled-parts of all things Camry, Corolla, Accord and Civic and the carcasses of those vehicles are generally the last to be c

        • 0 avatar

          It depends on the particular yard. In those that go row by row they pull a row when they have inventory to replace it and it doesn’t matter what is in that row or how much they have sold from a given car.

          In other yards it is the common things like the Toyota and Hondas that get crushed first. They know there is another one that is going to come in tomorrow and it only takes a couple of days for the 7 in demand parts to be scavenged.

          For the odd ball stuff they will let it hang around for longer because they know they won’t have another one any time soon and they know they can charge more for parts from it.

          However with companies like Pick and Pull buying out the independents they just stick to the row by row method as it is the crushed cars they are after because their business is metal not parts. The parts sales are just additional profit. Also they may crush a row or three because they know they don’t have enough shredder fodder to fill the next ship that is scheduled to head to China.

          • 0 avatar

            Is this still the case? Steel scrap is way down. Only $110/GT for prime #2 bushling.

          • 0 avatar

            Interesting stuff. And I imagine turnover would have a lot to do with the region, humidity and climate of the locale as well.

            Here in the desert, parts seem to be stored outdoors forever. For instance, there is a VW part specialist in this area who’s had the same Bug, Microvan and Squareback et al, parts since I first came to this area in Aug 1965.

            And there are a lot of air-cooled Bugs still running around in this area. Kinda rough, without airconditioning during the hottest times of the year.

            But for as desolate as things are here, there seems to be an overabunbdance of junk yards and recyclers in my area. And that is not even addressing the junk yards of El Paso County, TX.

          • 0 avatar

            With the price of metal being way down from its peak yes the companies are looking to make more from the parts. However most of them have standing contracts to feed China and there are ships that are dedicated just to hauling shredded steel. So yeah keeping that flow going is important to them.

            Yes it certainly does depend on the area, and the type of yard. If you are a long ways away from the ports then parts are the business. Near the ports then the metal is a main part of the business.

            Specialty yards that only carry one brand or model are an entirely different thing and again the distance to the port has a big impact.

            Back when the prices were high most days of the week when I was heading to work I’d see an old Chevy Viking with the cars stacked high heading to or from the port. The side of the truck showed that the yard was quite far away. Since the prices have dropped so much I haven’t seen that truck in a long time. So I’m guessing he is just letting them stack back up until it is profitable to haul them over.

      • 0 avatar

        It’s been a long time since I’ve been to a junkyard. But the last time, we were looking for Scout parts! That was maybe 25 years ago. The IH section then was 2 Scouts and 1 Traveler. I remember a lot of Chryslers though.

      • 0 avatar

        That’s a shame. Most of the yards I visit (not all of course) at least have the inclination to put imports on one side and domestics on the other. That way you dont waste 45 minutes looking for your Maxima tail light in a sea of Windstars, Caprices and Intrepids.

        They get confused on shared models. A Mazda B3000 (Ranger clone) or Mercury Villager may be in either/or, for example.

        There is a new yard in a town near me, and I checked it out. Very unorganized (clearly stacked in the order in which they came in), and many vehicles looked as though they had no business in a junk yard. I asked about a couple of them and was told $800-1k/each, no title. Or, at least that’s what the little princess who drove up on a golf cart told me. Sheesh. I bet they paid $100-$150 each (its a scrap metal place that expanded into parts when the scrap price fell out).

        • 0 avatar

          Not really. There are a couple of yards that I use and they tell you what row the car is in though you can also find that out from the Row52 or craigslist posting.

          They do expect that if you are going to a self serve yard you know enough as to what years will work for your particular part.

          So if you walk in and haven’t looked it up before you get there you say “do you have any 87-89 Maximas?” They’ll respond there is an 87 in row 12 set on Sep 17th, 89 in row 23 set Oct 12th and an 88 in row 2 set Nov 15th. Now yes you’ll have to walk that row of say 20 cars until you find the Maxima.

          Now the one is pure row by row while the other does have a section for Fords, GM, trucks, Japanese, Euro ect so that you don’t end up walking from one end to the other to find the different cars.

          Both have an area for fixers set apart from the parts cars. The price is clearly marked on the windshield. Yes they probably only paid a small fraction of the price listed on the windshield. They also usually set a time limit on how long it can stay in the fixer row. First week it is priced at say $1750, a week later $1500, until it reaches the point where they think it is worth more dead than alive. The other nice thing about the one is that if you buy a fixer you get 50% of the parts you need to fix it, assuming of course that they actually have the parts needed in stock.

    • 0 avatar

      It’s a Neon.

      The tail lamps and decklid are the clue.

      • 0 avatar

        I concede that it MIGHT be a Neon, however the cloud car’s tail lamps are larger than Neon’s, sticking further into the decklid. I stand by my original assumption as that appears to be the case here.

        Since the decklid and general shape of the two car’s tail lamps are quite similar, especially from a distance like this, they are a “clue” that it really could be either car, so I admit it is possible that Im wrong here (however, I seriously doubt it).

        For those wondering, if its a cloud car, it is a Breeze. The Cirrus had a clear strip at the bottom of the tail lamps and the Stratus had an amber strip. Only the Breeze was all red except for the inset reverse lamps (which arent visible in this picture so far as I can see). Come to think of it, I think the Spirit, Acclaim and LeBaron sedan that the cloud cars replaced were similar in this fashion.

        • 0 avatar


          Look at size of the reverse lamp on the Neon and then the Breeze. The breeze has a small reverse light that’s located (when on the RH side) at the bottom left corner; the Neon has one that runs the width of the tail light that is a few inches above the bottom of the lamp. The PL and JA cars both had large tail lamps.

          Also look at the character line that runs across the deck lid on the photo above, it runs the width of the deck lid below the reverse light. No such thing on the Breeze.

  • avatar

    VW’s email to the EPA

    “Dear EPA, our plan to fix the cars is to recall the cars, resolve the irregularities and return the cars back to the customers. Sank you.”

    Most likely the email looked like this.

    “We will recall the cars, the dealer will act like tweaking the software, we will say the cars have been fixed, you will do a press conference and say the issue is resolved and there will be penalties necessary and any agency that tries to verify the fix will be thrown in jail for hacking into VW’s IP. Our chancellor has already discussed this with the President You will be receiving a call from the WH shortly”

  • avatar
    Jeff S

    VW might be better off by waiting a few years before they do anything. In the next 5 to 10 years most of these TDIs will be hitting the salvage yard to be forgotten and unloved. When the value of the TDIs goes low enough they will be on the payday lots and the next destination will be the salvage yards.

  • avatar

    Part of the plan better include a buy back

  • avatar
    SCE to AUX

    I don’t know how their suppliers can produce enough parts in time for these deadlines, especially given the urgency and volume in Europe.

  • avatar
    Felix Hoenikker

    I have relatives who run a car recycling business in Middlesex, NJ. Land is scarce and expensive there so they do not let the cars sit. They are immediately stripped of parts they think are salable in South America. The bodies are then crushed and sent to the shredder.
    They do not retail any of the salvaged parts, but instead ship them in containers to Columbia.

  • avatar

    The picture is wrong: the clock should read 11:59.

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