As we reported yesterday, Volkswagen has decided against revealing the preliminary results of their internal investigation as it would bring “unacceptable risks” to the company. It might have been a good idea as a new wrinkle has appeared in the diesel emission scandal.
The New York Times has learned from two sources that a top technology executive prepared a PowerPoint presentation showing the automaker could fool the EPA's emission testing. The presentation was only a few pages long and explained the process of how the EPA did it. The presentation also talked about how the test could be fooled by a piece of code in the engine management software, turning on equipment that would reduce the amount of emissions produced.
The obvious question is why? Back in 2006, engineers at Volkswagen's r&d complex realized that the emission equipment in their new diesel engine would wear out faster if it was set up for the U.S. emission standards. This presentation provided a possible solution.
It is unknown who and how many people saw this presentation. But it brings doubt into Volkswagen's claim that a small group of employees knew about the cheat.
The Times also reports that Martin Winterkorn - the former chief executive for Volkswagen - rejected proposals from low-ranking employees. According to sources who attended meetings with the management board, the proposals were tossed out as it would increase the price of Volkswagen vehicles.
Unsurprisingly, Volkswagen declined to comment.
Source: The New York Times