German Prosecutor Launches Daimler Diesel Fraud Investigation

german prosecutor launches daimler diesel fraud investigation

In a developing story, the Stuttgart prosecutors’ office has launched an investigation into employees of Daimler, parent company and manufacturer of Mercedes-Benz BlueTEC engines. At issue is the (lately) very common Germanic malady of diesel infidelity.

A report from Bloomberg yesterday cited a source close to the office who claimed the prosecutor opened an investigation into Daimler that day. At the time, a spokesman for Daimler said the company was not aware of any investigation of its employees.

German publication Die Zeit also reported on Wednesday that a Daimler employee testified to authorities in Stuttgart regarding possible manipulation of its diesel engines to cheat on emissions tests. Responding to the article, Daimler stated that its diesel engines had been checked by the German motor authority and transport ministry, with no issues found.

This new investigation is the second over the same issue. The first began in December of 2015, when the prosecutor set out to determine if employees at auto supplier Bosch had participated in the diesel manipulation.

The prosecutors’ office confirmed the new investigation to Reuters on Wednesday — after Die Zeit spilled the beans — stating, “We are investigating known and unknown employees at Daimler.” The office also confirmed the investigation was launched on suspicion of fraud and misleading advertising.

It should be noted that in April 2016, Daimler was part of a voluntary recall of 630,000 Volkswagen, Mercedes-Benz, and Opel vehicles. Cars covered by the recall contained a device which turned off emissions controls at specific temperatures in order to protect the engine. German testing of engines with these devices found the controls were not warranted.

Daimler may have a long road ahead of them, if results of previous German diesel investigations are any indicator.

[Image: Daimler AG]

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  • Kars Kars on Mar 23, 2017

    perhaps it is also the reason MB suddenly stopped selling all diesels in Canada.

  • SCE to AUX SCE to AUX on Mar 23, 2017

    "At issue is the (lately) very common Germanic malady of diesel infidelity." I'm not sure that's true. Has any mfr besides VW confessed to 'diesel infidelity', or been convicted of it? Of all the accusations flying around, the only ones I've seen stick are against VW. BTW, that car looks like a sad dog waiting to get his nose smacked.

    • See 1 previous
    • HotPotato HotPotato on Mar 27, 2017

      @Corey Lewis IIRC, Nissan and Fiat diesels have a similar "off switch," and the operating parameters for "on" in the Fiat especially are comically narrow. Will the Germans require a recall of those too? (Or do Germans buy too few off zese inferior imports for it to matter?)

  • EAM3 Learned to drive in my parents' 1981 Maxima. Lovely car that seemed to do everything right. I can still hear the "Please turn off the lights" voice in my head since everyone wanted a demo of the newfangled talking car. A friend of the family had a manual transmission one and that thing was fun!
  • FreedMike That wagon is yummy.
  • Syke Thanks, somehow I missed that.
  • 285exp I am quite sure that it is a complete coincidence that they have announced a $7k price increase the same week that the current administration has passed legislation extending the $7k tax credit that was set to expire. Yep, not at all related.
  • Syke Is it possible to switch the pure EV drive on and off? Given the wonderful throttle response of an EV, I could see the desirability of this for a serious off-roader. Run straight ICE to get to your off-roading site, switch over the EV drive during the off-road section, then back to ICE for the road trip back home.
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