Tag: cheating

By on July 25, 2017

Volkswagen VW Badge Emblem Logo

Oliver Schmidt, former top executive at Volkswagen’s environmental and engineering center in Michigan, is ready to plead guilty in a U.S. District Court in Detroit next month. Schmidt is charged with 11 felony counts relating to VW’s diesel emissions scandal and may be eligible for a maximum sentence of 169 years, according to federal prosecutors.

While the trial isn’t scheduled until August 4th, a spokesman for the court indicated the former-VW executive is seeking a plea deal. The details of the bargain are currently unknown, but it’s likely to involve a reduced sentence in exchange of information on the scandal’s murky history.  (Read More…)

By on January 28, 2016

 

A lawyer for Volkswagen said in court that the automaker would buy back cars that it can’t fix in time, the first admission from the company that some of its cars may not be fixable, according to the New York Times.

Volkswagen lawyer Robert Giuffra told a court last week during hearings related to the class-action lawsuits facing the automaker that the company hadn’t determined how many cars would be affected.

“We might have to do a buyback or some sort of a solution like that for some subset of the vehicles, but that hasn’t been determined yet,” Giuffra said according to the report. (Read More…)

By on January 7, 2016

Volkswagen Pressekonferenz, 10.12.2015

German newspaper Sueddeutsche Zeitung reported Thursday that Volkswagen was preparing to buy back about one-fifth of its cheating diesel cars in the U.S., according to Reuters.

That would mean about 115,000 cars — likely older models that would need significant work to bring emissions into compliance — could be taken off the road in an historic buyback. According to the report, the cars would be bought back by the automaker for their purchase price or by significantly discounting a new model for those owners.

(Read More…)

By on December 15, 2015

Bosch

Auto supply giant Bosch is being investigated for its part in the widespread emissions cheating scandal that has engulfed Volkswagen, Bloomberg reported (via Automotive News).

Prosecutors in Stuttgart say that they’ve contacted the company, which supplied Volkswagen with engine control modules that helped the cars illegally pass emissions tests, about their role in engineering the illegal devices.

A spokeswoman for Bosch said it would comply with requests from authorities.

(Read More…)

By on December 11, 2015

2016 BMW X5d

(Update: With EPA comment and clarification on their tests.)

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency approved for sale Friday the 2016 BMW X5d after new tests of that car revealed that it did not use an illegal “defeat device” to cheat emissions standards, Reuters reported.

Well it didn’t use a defeat device as far as they could see, anyway.

“Our screening tests found no evidence of a defeat device in the 2016 BMW X5,” EPA spokeswoman Laura Allen told Reuters. “No evidence” is hardly a clean bill of health from the environmental agency, but at this point we’ll take what we can get.

(Read More…)

By on December 3, 2015

dbpix-airbag-tmagArticle

I wouldn’t be surprised if every morning in Tokyo executives at Takata hope that more revelations come out concerning Volkswagen’s diesel emissions cheating scandal so as to push any revelations about their own exploding airbag scandal down the page.

Last week, Honda accused Takata of “misrepresented and manipulated test data” in explaining why they decided to stop using Takata as a supplier.

On Monday, the Wall Street Journal, based on internal documents discovered as a result of lawsuits, reported that Takata engineers in the United States had expressed reservations about fudged test results going to Honda starting in 2000. (Read More…)

By on December 1, 2015

Volkswagen Wolfsburg

Deciding that the company’s annual pre-Christmas party wasn’t a great time to be Wetblanket Wildes, the Porsche-Piech clan affirmed that it would be committed to Volkswagen amid its emissions crises (pl.) and said the company that the family-owned company would “master the situation,” according to Reuters.

The Porsche-Piech family, who owns a majority stake in Volkswagen’s parent company, told the automaker’s board and the town of Wolfsburg that the family has no intention of pulling the plug.

“I am firmly convinced that the city of Wolfsburg together with Volkswagen will master the situation and gain further strength,” Wolfgang Porsche said in a statement, according to Reuters. “The Porsche and Piech families stand behind Volkswagen and Wolfsburg as its headquarters.”

(Read More…)

By on November 8, 2015

SkullExhaustPic1

A number of Volkswagen engineers cheated on tests used to determine carbon dioxide emissions because goals set by former group CEO Martin Winterkorn were too demanding and difficult to achieve, reported German outlet Bild am Sonntag.

The report was “broadly confirmed” by Volkswagen, stated The New York Times. It’s believed goals set by Winterkorn, which would have made Volkswagen vehicles cleaner than required by European regulations, pressured the engineers to manipulate the tests as they were afraid to admit they could not meet those goals.

The engineers pumped up tire pressures to reduce rolling resistance and put diesel in motor oil to make the vehicles more fuel efficient, thus producing less carbon dioxide. The practice “began in 2013 and carried on until the spring of this year,” reported Automotive News.

(Read More…)

By on October 19, 2015

tdiengine

Reuters reported that sources within Volkswagen and its ongoing investigation have said the automaker created multiple versions of its “defeat device” to cheat emissions tests.

The news agency said a manager within Volkswagen and an official close to the external investigation ordered by the automaker have revealed the multiple programs, which were developed for four different engine types.

If true, the multiple emissions programs could indicate a widespread cheating program — stretching nearly a decade — that could have needed funding to continue, which would be in stark contrast to the “rogue engineer” explanation offered by executives so far.

(Read More…)

By on October 12, 2015

Paul Willis

Volkswagen’s chief in the United Kingdom told representatives Monday that cars in that country likely wouldn’t need expensive urea tanks retrofitted to those cars to comply with emissions standards, AutoCar reported.

Volkswagen UK managing director Paul Willis told members of parliament that most of the 1.2 million cars in that country fitted with illegal “defeat devices” to cheat emissions tests would only need a software fix and not an additional urea tank that is widely believed to be needed in U.S. cars. About 400,000 cars would need a fuel injector replacement instead of the costly tank.

It’s likely that many of the cheating Volkswagens in the U.S. would need all or a combination of three fixes — software update, fuel injectors and a urea tank — to bring those cars into compliance.

(Read More…)

By on October 2, 2015

GM-Emissions-Lab

While working on a story about some very old cars, I stumbled upon something relevant to the latest big story in the automotive world.

I ran into a Model T collector who’s also a powertrain engineer for Ford. Seizing the opportunity, I asked him if he could tell me what he was working on (sometimes they say no). He said that he was responsible for developing computerized engine controls. Because of that expertise, I started to ask him some questions about the software program that Volkswagen apparently used to cheat on the EPA’s diesel emissions testing.

What he was willing to say and what he wouldn’t say intrigued me. (Read More…)

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