One of the stumbling blocks for Volkswagen with the diesel emission scandal has been trying to find a fix that the feds would agree to. Previous attempts for the 2.0 and 3.0L TDI have ended with rejection from the California Air Resources Board due to the "submissions are incomplete, substantially deficient, and fall far short of meeting the legal requirements to return these vehicles to the claimed certified configuration." But it seems progress is being made on this.
In an interview with Reuters, CARB's head Mary Nichols said they are working with Volkswagen on testing potential fixes for the three generations of the 2.0L TDI four-cylinder engine.
“They brought in a whole new team of people to work on various aspects of this. There’s just a greater sense that we’re dealing with people who have access to the decision makers in Germany, and who understand their credibility is on the line," said Nichols.
The potential fixes must improve emissions by 80 to 90 percent of federal pollution standards. This seems odd since regulators wanted Volkswagen to get the vehicles fully meeting standards, but they are willing to give the company some breathing room as Volkswagen will be paying $2.7 billion to reduce the excess NOx emissions spewing from their vehicles.
Getting a fix approved could be Volkswagen's saving grace as they could offer owners the choice of either having their vehicles bought back or having them fixed, which in turn could lessen the hurt of buying back all of the affected vehicles. Whether this pans out remains to be seen.