By on January 31, 2018

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Daimler AG and BMW group suspended or moved several employees linked to a group that was commissioned for research that involved exposing monkeys and humans to potentially harmful gases. While the nature of these tests may not be extraordinary or illegal, the public response has been one of outrage.

Volkswagen suspended chief lobbyist Thomas Steg earlier this week for similar reasons, but the other automakers have now followed suit in the hopes of quelling public anger. The automakers haven’t kept silent on the matter, either. High-ranking executives have called the research repugnant, suggesting that the ethics employed by the European Research Group on Environment and Health in the Transport Sector (EUGT) were unacceptable. 

BMW said it will remove its representative on the EUGT’s management board from his current functions, pending an investigation into EUGT’s research by the automaker’s legal team. Daimler claimed it would suspend at least one employee linked to the scandal while an externally hired law firm investigates the diesel-related testing. Neither company confirmed the names of the employees.

Meanwhile, German prosecutors raided the homes of several Audi staff members (both current and former) in connection to VW Group’s earlier emissions-cheating scandal. The “official visits” took place on Wednesday at roughly the same time the Stuttgart prosecutor’s office said two employees from Robert Bosch were under investigation on suspicion of fraud. That case ties back to another probe, which aims to uncover if Fiat Chrysler Automobiles used hidden software to allow excessive diesel emissions on 3.0-liter diesel versions of the Jeep Grand Cherokee and Ram 1500.

As a major auto parts supplier, Bosch has previously been accused of creating the software that allowed Volkswagen to skirt diesel emission testing and regulations. The company has supported the ongoing investigations, cooperating fully with the responsible authorities.

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18 Comments on “German Automakers ‘Rearrange’ Staff After Newest Diesel-related Scandal, Audi Employees See Homes Raided...”

  • avatar

    The Germans are trying to emulate the Japanese with corporate scandals. If the Italians got involved, we could repeat history.

  • avatar

    Well, when a bunch of Germans decide it’s a good idea to gas any living creature, you can pretty much expect to stir up some s**t.

  • avatar
    SCE to AUX

    “While the nature of these tests may not be extraordinary or illegal…”

    Q: Then why are employees being sacked?

    “…the public response has been one of outrage”

    A: Political correctness, in response to an ill-informed public whose ignorance gives them the moral high ground.

    Don’t like animal testing? Then outlaw it. And then people will wonder why it takes so much longer to certify foods, drugs, medical devices, and other products for public consumption. This is how “fast-track” drug certification programs come into being – people get tired of all the red tape and stop asking questions. But when they ask the questions, they don’t like the answers.

  • avatar

    I have a month old GTI. I wonder if I can make a claim for diminished market value…

  • avatar

    Not a really good look for der fatherland.

  • avatar
    Big Al from Oz

    Its a shame what is going on by the Germans.

    Prior to any project being given the green light I wonder what kind of risks they assess?

    The problem confronting the Germans is appearing ingrained, cultural.

    Poor leadership, management and governance is the cause of their woes.

    The German industrial leadership better get hold of what’s going on below them. I do believe they don’t really know what’s going on, they might suspect, but have distanced themselves. Profits and shareholders, in other words too much greed.

    The German industry leaders need greater involvement and not pressure the bottom line, as we can see poor judgement is made and the risks are unacceptable to any business, not just in Germany, but around the world.

    To the Germans, get your act together or it will cost you.

    • 0 avatar

      Automobile manufacturing accounts for about 20% of the German GDP and employees over 750,000, they’d better get a handle on things. Their economy will start to feel the negative effects of the government’s open door immigration policy soon. If wages drop as a result then exports will become even more important. Americans may not respond well to this animal/human testing situation, ironically the animal testing may upset some people more than the human testing, lol. Either way, VW had better tread lightly. Either that or prepare to put a lot of cash on the hood.

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  • avatar

    The only 100% guaranteed result of implementing new regulations:

    People will go to jail

  • avatar

    “While the nature of these tests may not be extraordinary or illegal, the public response has been one of outrage.”

    This reminds me a bit of the horrible Heath/Tulane Marijuana Study but without the outrage.

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