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Found 105 results

  1. In 2016, nine brands sold 20 diesel models in the U.S. But in light of the Volkswagen diesel emission scandal, a number from Volkswagen, Audi, and Porsche have been sidelined. But there are diesel models from GM, FCA, BMW, Mercedes-Benz, Jaguar, and Land Rover still being offered. But the only 2017 models you can buy at the moment are from Jaguar and Land Rover. Where are the rest? In limbo thanks to a new battery of tests being doing by the EPA. Automotive News reports that since last October, the EPA has been subjecting diesel models to new tests to determine if other automakers are pulling any sneaky cheats. The EPA hasn't said anything publicly about the tests aside from them keeping the vehicles and testing them in unpredictable ways. So far, the new tests haven't uncovered any cheating. "It is true that diesel vehicles are getting extra scrutiny and that has extended the certification process longer than normal. In general, manufacturers have been supportive of this additional testing and have adjusted their timing to account for the additional test duration," EPA spokesman Nick Conger said to Automotive News. Case in point, BMW will not be launching their 2017 3-Series and X3 diesels until the end of the year, with the X5 following in January. Meanwhile, sources at GM tell Automotive News they're awaiting approval for 2017 Chevrolet Colorado and GMC Canyon diesels before they start sending them out to dealers. FCA doesn't have any 2017 Jeep Grand Cherokee or Ram 1500 EcoDiesels at the moment despite press details saying they would be offered. An FCA spokesman declined to comment to Automotive News - our guess is that FCA is waiting. Mercedes-Benz could be the big loser with this extensive testing. The German automaker was planning to sell four diesel models; C-Class sedan, GLC, GLE, and GLS. Mercedes-Benz spokesman Robert Moran tells Automotive News in an email that the priority for the moment is getting the certification for the GLS. Moran declined to say if Mercedes is planning to offer diesel versions of the GLC and GLE. However, the C-Class diesel has been taken off the table due to "product strategy reasons." This model was supposed to go on sale at the beginning of this year. Source: Automotive News (Subscription Required) View full article
  2. The EPA, National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, and California Air Resources Board have released their draft Technical Assessment Report on the 'Midterm Evaluation of Light-duty Vehicle GHG Emissions Standards for Model Years 2022-2025'. Despite the long name, this report is important as the results will help determine if the 54.5 mpg corporate average fuel economy target for 2025 needs to be adjusted or not. Let's begin with the good news. The report says the industry is “adopting fuel economy technologies at unprecedented rates.” Automakers and suppliers have been hard at work on developing new technologies to improve overall fuel economy and emissions. The report goes on to say with the improvements being made on gas engines, automakers will not need to rely as heavily on electric or hybrid vehicles. Now for the bad news. According to Automotive News, government officals have taken the 54.5 mpg goal off the table. Low gas prices and the high demand for trucks, SUVs, and crossovers have caused officals to rethink the goal. The government now belives the fleet average for mpgs will land between 50 and 52.6 by 2025. Source: Automotive News (Subscription Required), EPA View full article
  3. The EPA, National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, and California Air Resources Board have released their draft Technical Assessment Report on the 'Midterm Evaluation of Light-duty Vehicle GHG Emissions Standards for Model Years 2022-2025'. Despite the long name, this report is important as the results will help determine if the 54.5 mpg corporate average fuel economy target for 2025 needs to be adjusted or not. Let's begin with the good news. The report says the industry is “adopting fuel economy technologies at unprecedented rates.” Automakers and suppliers have been hard at work on developing new technologies to improve overall fuel economy and emissions. The report goes on to say with the improvements being made on gas engines, automakers will not need to rely as heavily on electric or hybrid vehicles. Now for the bad news. According to Automotive News, government officals have taken the 54.5 mpg goal off the table. Low gas prices and the high demand for trucks, SUVs, and crossovers have caused officals to rethink the goal. The government now belives the fleet average for mpgs will land between 50 and 52.6 by 2025. Source: Automotive News (Subscription Required), EPA
  4. If you're wondering when Volkswagen will resume sales of diesel vehicles in the U.S., you're going to have to wait a bit longer. Automotive News has learned that the German automaker hasn't applied for the necessary EPA approvals to start selling diesel vehicles in the U.S. "They need to address our concerns" before sales can resume, an EPA official said. Those concerns most likely relate to Volkswagen coming up with a fix that meets the standards of the EPA and California Air Resources Board (CARB). As we have reported previously, Volkswagen might not be able to fully fix some of the TDI vehicles. Source: Automotive News (Subscription Required) View full article
  5. If you're wondering when Volkswagen will resume sales of diesel vehicles in the U.S., you're going to have to wait a bit longer. Automotive News has learned that the German automaker hasn't applied for the necessary EPA approvals to start selling diesel vehicles in the U.S. "They need to address our concerns" before sales can resume, an EPA official said. Those concerns most likely relate to Volkswagen coming up with a fix that meets the standards of the EPA and California Air Resources Board (CARB). As we have reported previously, Volkswagen might not be able to fully fix some of the TDI vehicles. Source: Automotive News (Subscription Required)
  6. The past couple days have been crazy at Mitsubishi with executives possibly stepping down, the EPA ordering retest of vehicles, and the U.S. branch telling dealers there are no inconsistencies in the tests for the U.S. models. Let's get you up to date. On Tuesday, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and California Air Resources Board (CARB) requested details from Mitsubishi on its U.S. vehicle lineup to check for discrepancies. The EPA also requested Mitsubishi to retest their U.S. lineup. A day later, Japanese media reported that Mitsubishi Motors CEO Osamu Masuko and COO Tetsuro Aikawa would resign due to manipulation of fuel economy data. According to Reuters, Aikawa denied these reports. "It's my responsibility and my mission to put the company on track to recovery. Beyond that, I haven't had a chance to even consider" the possibility of resigning, Aikawa said. Reuters also reports that Mitsubishi Motors could be on the hook for almost $1 billion to compensate owners, pay back tax rebates from the government, and other payments. This is according to analysts at Nomura Holdings. Yesterday, Mitsubishi Motors North America said they found no testing problems with vehicles sold in the U.S. between 2013 to now. “Our findings confirm that fuel economy testing data for these U.S. market vehicles is accurate and complies with established EPA procedures,” Don Swearingen, COO of 
Mitsubishi Motors North America told dealers in a letter to dealers. The letter was obtained by Automotive News. Source: Reuters via Automotive News, Reuters, Automotive News (Subscription Required), Mitsubishi Press Release is on Page 2 Mitsubishi Motors North America Statement Regarding Fuel Consumption Testing Data April 27, 2016 Mitsubishi Motors Corporation in Tokyo recently announced irregularities concerning fuel consumption testing data. To confirm that U.S. market vehicles are not affected by this issue, Mitsubishi Motors R&D America, Inc., working together with Mitsubishi Motors Corporation, proactively conducted an internal audit of U.S. market vehicles going back several model years to check previously submitted data to the EPA. After a thorough review of all 2013MY – 2017MY vehicles sold in the United States, we have determined that none of these vehicles are affected. Our findings confirm that fuel economy testing data for these U.S. market vehicles is accurate and complies with established EPA procedures. An entirely different system is used for the United States market to determine what the EPA calls Road Load Coefficient, strictly adhering to EPA procedures. The data generated is then independently verified for its accuracy before being submitted to the EPA for their fuel economy testing. MMNA has shared this information with EPA, California Air Resources Board and DOT. Mitsubishi Motors Corporation has acted quickly to address this issue and is putting in place a committee of external experts to thoroughly and objectively continue this investigation. The results of the investigation, once completed, will be made public. Mitsubishi Motors Corporation is also working closely with the Japanese Government to fully review the implications of this issue, and to discuss potential resolutions.
  7. The past couple days have been crazy at Mitsubishi with executives possibly stepping down, the EPA ordering retest of vehicles, and the U.S. branch telling dealers there are no inconsistencies in the tests for the U.S. models. Let's get you up to date. On Tuesday, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and California Air Resources Board (CARB) requested details from Mitsubishi on its U.S. vehicle lineup to check for discrepancies. The EPA also requested Mitsubishi to retest their U.S. lineup. A day later, Japanese media reported that Mitsubishi Motors CEO Osamu Masuko and COO Tetsuro Aikawa would resign due to manipulation of fuel economy data. According to Reuters, Aikawa denied these reports. "It's my responsibility and my mission to put the company on track to recovery. Beyond that, I haven't had a chance to even consider" the possibility of resigning, Aikawa said. Reuters also reports that Mitsubishi Motors could be on the hook for almost $1 billion to compensate owners, pay back tax rebates from the government, and other payments. This is according to analysts at Nomura Holdings. Yesterday, Mitsubishi Motors North America said they found no testing problems with vehicles sold in the U.S. between 2013 to now. “Our findings confirm that fuel economy testing data for these U.S. market vehicles is accurate and complies with established EPA procedures,” Don Swearingen, COO of 
Mitsubishi Motors North America told dealers in a letter to dealers. The letter was obtained by Automotive News. Source: Reuters via Automotive News, Reuters, Automotive News (Subscription Required), Mitsubishi Press Release is on Page 2 Mitsubishi Motors North America Statement Regarding Fuel Consumption Testing Data April 27, 2016 Mitsubishi Motors Corporation in Tokyo recently announced irregularities concerning fuel consumption testing data. To confirm that U.S. market vehicles are not affected by this issue, Mitsubishi Motors R&D America, Inc., working together with Mitsubishi Motors Corporation, proactively conducted an internal audit of U.S. market vehicles going back several model years to check previously submitted data to the EPA. After a thorough review of all 2013MY – 2017MY vehicles sold in the United States, we have determined that none of these vehicles are affected. Our findings confirm that fuel economy testing data for these U.S. market vehicles is accurate and complies with established EPA procedures. An entirely different system is used for the United States market to determine what the EPA calls Road Load Coefficient, strictly adhering to EPA procedures. The data generated is then independently verified for its accuracy before being submitted to the EPA for their fuel economy testing. MMNA has shared this information with EPA, California Air Resources Board and DOT. Mitsubishi Motors Corporation has acted quickly to address this issue and is putting in place a committee of external experts to thoroughly and objectively continue this investigation. The results of the investigation, once completed, will be made public. Mitsubishi Motors Corporation is also working closely with the Japanese Government to fully review the implications of this issue, and to discuss potential resolutions. View full article
  8. Volkswagen has already missed one deadline set by U.S. District Judge Charles Breyer on reaching a deal with the U.S. Government over the diesel emission scandal. Breyer has given them a second deadline of April 21st. Now the administrator of the EPA worries they could miss the second one. Speaking to reporters at a breakfast, EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy said she has concerns about the two groups being able to reach a deal before the deadline. "I wouldn't take any single signal as the direction of those negotiations or where any final agreement - if we reach one - will end up," said McCarthy. If an agreement isn't reached by April 21st, Breyer has said he would consider bringing this to trial over the summer. Source: Reuters
  9. Volkswagen has already missed one deadline set by U.S. District Judge Charles Breyer on reaching a deal with the U.S. Government over the diesel emission scandal. Breyer has given them a second deadline of April 21st. Now the administrator of the EPA worries they could miss the second one. Speaking to reporters at a breakfast, EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy said she has concerns about the two groups being able to reach a deal before the deadline. "I wouldn't take any single signal as the direction of those negotiations or where any final agreement - if we reach one - will end up," said McCarthy. If an agreement isn't reached by April 21st, Breyer has said he would consider bringing this to trial over the summer. Source: Reuters View full article
  10. Nissan's first attempt at a hybrid crossover - the Pathfinder Hybrid - was a disaster in terms of sales and was pulled from the lineup last year. But the Japanese automaker is giving it another try. Car and Driver discovered that the EPA reveal the existence of a Murano Hybrid by publishing fuel economy numbers for the front and all-wheel drive versions. Nissan currently sells the Murano Hybrid in China where it uses a 2.5L supercharged four-cylinder and electric motor, the same powertrain found in the Pathfinder Hybrid. For those interested, the Murano Hybrid is rated at 28 City/31 Highway/29 Combined for the front-wheel drive model and 26 City/30 Highway/28 Combined for the all-wheel drive model. Nissan wouldn't comment if the Murano Hybrid is coming to America. But considering the EPA has certified it, there is a chance it will come. Source: Car and Driver, EPA
  11. Nissan's first attempt at a hybrid crossover - the Pathfinder Hybrid - was a disaster in terms of sales and was pulled from the lineup last year. But the Japanese automaker is giving it another try. Car and Driver discovered that the EPA reveal the existence of a Murano Hybrid by publishing fuel economy numbers for the front and all-wheel drive versions. Nissan currently sells the Murano Hybrid in China where it uses a 2.5L supercharged four-cylinder and electric motor, the same powertrain found in the Pathfinder Hybrid. For those interested, the Murano Hybrid is rated at 28 City/31 Highway/29 Combined for the front-wheel drive model and 26 City/30 Highway/28 Combined for the all-wheel drive model. Nissan wouldn't comment if the Murano Hybrid is coming to America. But considering the EPA has certified it, there is a chance it will come. Source: Car and Driver, EPA View full article
  12. A possible punishment that the EPA could bring down on Volkswagen is making them build electric vehicles in the U.S. German newspaper Welt am Sonntag reports the EPA is asking the German automaker to produce EVs at their Chattanooga, TN plant and to help build out a network of chargers across the U.S. The report doesn't say if EPA is asking for VW to produce a new electric vehicle or a current one - the Golf EV. It should be noted that Welt am Sonntag's report doesn't cite a source. "Talks with the EPA are ongoing and we are not commenting on the contents and state of the negotiations," said a Volkswagen spokesperson to Reuters. The EPA declined to comment. Reuters also notes Hans Dieter Poetsch, Volkswagen's chairman of Volkswagen's supervisory board German transport minister Alexander Dobrindt last week to give an update on cleaning up this mess. First reported by the German publication Bild am Sonntag, Poetsch said the company would do everything in its power to solve this crisis. Source: Welt am Sonntag, Reuters, Bild am Sonntag View full article
  13. A possible punishment that the EPA could bring down on Volkswagen is making them build electric vehicles in the U.S. German newspaper Welt am Sonntag reports the EPA is asking the German automaker to produce EVs at their Chattanooga, TN plant and to help build out a network of chargers across the U.S. The report doesn't say if EPA is asking for VW to produce a new electric vehicle or a current one - the Golf EV. It should be noted that Welt am Sonntag's report doesn't cite a source. "Talks with the EPA are ongoing and we are not commenting on the contents and state of the negotiations," said a Volkswagen spokesperson to Reuters. The EPA declined to comment. Reuters also notes Hans Dieter Poetsch, Volkswagen's chairman of Volkswagen's supervisory board German transport minister Alexander Dobrindt last week to give an update on cleaning up this mess. First reported by the German publication Bild am Sonntag, Poetsch said the company would do everything in its power to solve this crisis. Source: Welt am Sonntag, Reuters, Bild am Sonntag
  14. Last month, the California Air Resources Board (CARB) rejected Volkswagen's plan to fix the 2.0L TDI because it was "incomplete, substantially deficient and fall far short of meeting the legal requirements to return these vehicles” to compliance. With this setback, many are concerned that it will be awhile before a fix is agreed on by Volkswagen and CARB/EPA. German magazine Manager Magazin reports that top managers at the German automaker believe an agreement between the three parties might not happen until the end of March. The reason comes down to the EPA wanting to do a long-distance test of Volkswagen's proposed fix to make sure it actually fixes the problem of elevated emission levels. The report also mentions that expected costs of doing the recall, possible buybacks, and customer compensation will be significantly higher than first thought. Source: Manager Magazin View full article
  15. Last month, the California Air Resources Board (CARB) rejected Volkswagen's plan to fix the 2.0L TDI because it was "incomplete, substantially deficient and fall far short of meeting the legal requirements to return these vehicles” to compliance. With this setback, many are concerned that it will be awhile before a fix is agreed on by Volkswagen and CARB/EPA. German magazine Manager Magazin reports that top managers at the German automaker believe an agreement between the three parties might not happen until the end of March. The reason comes down to the EPA wanting to do a long-distance test of Volkswagen's proposed fix to make sure it actually fixes the problem of elevated emission levels. The report also mentions that expected costs of doing the recall, possible buybacks, and customer compensation will be significantly higher than first thought. Source: Manager Magazin
  16. It was expected that Volkswagen would begin repairing diesel vehicles with the illegal software in the first few months of 2016. But after the California Air Resources Board rejected Volkswagen's fix this week, the timeframe for when vehicles will be fixed is unknown. On Tuesday, CARB said Volkswagen plan were "incomplete, substantially deficient and fall far short of meeting the legal requirements to return these vehicles” to compliance. Speaking at the Automotive News World Congress, Chris Grundler, director of the EPA’s Office of Transportation and Air Quality said his team agreed with CARB's decision. “Both CARB and EPA continue to insist on an expeditious fix that will not only bring these vehicles into compliance but also do so in a way that doesn’t create any adverse impacts for owners. We’re not there yet,” said Grundler. Grundler went on to say Volkswagen's proposal fell short in a number of areas and that more effort is needed. “I do want to say that this is not a political matter. It’s a serious matter, the deficiencies cover a range of areas. I would not characterize it as dotting i’s or crossing t’s. We agreed with CARB’s assessment … but we’re going to keep talking.” Grundler's comments came before a meeting between EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy and Volkswagen CEO Matthias Mueller and brand chief Herbert Diess to work out a deal on a possible fix. The two parties emerged without a deal, but both were very appreciated about the meeting and work towards a fix would continue. Source: Automotive News (Subscription Required)
  17. It was expected that Volkswagen would begin repairing diesel vehicles with the illegal software in the first few months of 2016. But after the California Air Resources Board rejected Volkswagen's fix this week, the timeframe for when vehicles will be fixed is unknown. On Tuesday, CARB said Volkswagen plan were "incomplete, substantially deficient and fall far short of meeting the legal requirements to return these vehicles” to compliance. Speaking at the Automotive News World Congress, Chris Grundler, director of the EPA’s Office of Transportation and Air Quality said his team agreed with CARB's decision. “Both CARB and EPA continue to insist on an expeditious fix that will not only bring these vehicles into compliance but also do so in a way that doesn’t create any adverse impacts for owners. We’re not there yet,” said Grundler. Grundler went on to say Volkswagen's proposal fell short in a number of areas and that more effort is needed. “I do want to say that this is not a political matter. It’s a serious matter, the deficiencies cover a range of areas. I would not characterize it as dotting i’s or crossing t’s. We agreed with CARB’s assessment … but we’re going to keep talking.” Grundler's comments came before a meeting between EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy and Volkswagen CEO Matthias Mueller and brand chief Herbert Diess to work out a deal on a possible fix. The two parties emerged without a deal, but both were very appreciated about the meeting and work towards a fix would continue. Source: Automotive News (Subscription Required) View full article
  18. The EPA released their annual report on the trends of emissions and fuel economy for light vehicles and the results are a bit mixed. The average fuel economy of new cars and trucks came to 24.3 mpg for 2014. This was the same fuel economy average for 2013, when the average increased by 0.6 mpg. 2014 was the first year since 2011 where fleet-wide fuel economy didn't increase. Why no increase? The EPA says growing demand for crossovers, SUVs, and trucks along with lower gas prices offset the fleet-wide efficiency gains. Christopher Grundler, director of the EPA’s Office of Transportation and Air Quality tells Automotive News that he's not worried about the slowdown in fleet-wide mpg improvements. “The whole policy was designed explicitly to preserve consumer choice. In 2014, the mix shifted a little bit, but overall we are exactly where we expected to be with greenhouse gas reductions,” said Grundler. There was some good news from the report. The average carbon dioxide emissions from new vehicles were 13 grams per mile lower than 2014 targets. Also, the average fuel economy for trucks climbed 0.6 mpg to 20.4. The EPA says that 0.6 mpg increase in the second-highest gain in 30 years. Source: Automotive News (Subscription Required), EPA View full article
  19. The EPA released their annual report on the trends of emissions and fuel economy for light vehicles and the results are a bit mixed. The average fuel economy of new cars and trucks came to 24.3 mpg for 2014. This was the same fuel economy average for 2013, when the average increased by 0.6 mpg. 2014 was the first year since 2011 where fleet-wide fuel economy didn't increase. Why no increase? The EPA says growing demand for crossovers, SUVs, and trucks along with lower gas prices offset the fleet-wide efficiency gains. Christopher Grundler, director of the EPA’s Office of Transportation and Air Quality tells Automotive News that he's not worried about the slowdown in fleet-wide mpg improvements. “The whole policy was designed explicitly to preserve consumer choice. In 2014, the mix shifted a little bit, but overall we are exactly where we expected to be with greenhouse gas reductions,” said Grundler. There was some good news from the report. The average carbon dioxide emissions from new vehicles were 13 grams per mile lower than 2014 targets. Also, the average fuel economy for trucks climbed 0.6 mpg to 20.4. The EPA says that 0.6 mpg increase in the second-highest gain in 30 years. Source: Automotive News (Subscription Required), EPA
  20. Greencar is reporting that VW submitted to EPA and CARB their repair for the 2.0 TDi engines which is pretty much expected to be a software flash. Their story also implies that it is easier in Europe to fix all diesels than here in the US. US Politicians here are stating that due to the need for what is expected to have to be a Urea fix, changes to grill and other hardware components, that VW should be forced to buy back the half a million TDi auto's at fair market price before the news came out and crush them. http://www.greencarreports.com/news/1100974_volkswagen-proposes-2-0-liter-diesel-fixes-as-crisis-continues The story is a 3 page story with details about the Urea system that would be needed as well as an interesting section on what they consider to be a growing bafflement on who VW is responding to this.
  21. The sh*t is hitting the fan. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and California Air Resources Board (CARB) announced today that Volkswagen had illegal 'defeat device' software installed on a number of their vehicles equipped with the 3.0L TDI V6 to evade diesel emission testing. The two parties say the software allowed the TDI engine to emit nine times the legally allowable pollution limit. Vehicles involved in this latest allegation include, 2014 Volkswagen Toureg TDI 2015 Porsche Cayenne Diesel 2016 Audi A6 TDI, A7 TDI, A8 TDI, A8L TDI, Q5 TDI “VW has once again failed its obligation to comply with the law that protects clean air for all Americans. All companies should be playing by the same rules. EPA, with our state and federal partners, will continue to investigate these serious matters, to secure the benefits of the Clean Air Act, ensure a level playing field for responsible businesses, and to ensure consumers get the environmental performance they expect,” said Cynthia Giles, assistant administrator of the Office for EPA’s Enforcement and Compliance Assurance. Source: The Detroit News UPDATE: Volkswagen has issued a statement on the EPA's announcement. The United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) informed Volkswagen Aktiengesellschaft on Monday that vehicles with V6 TDI engines had a software function which had not been adequately described in the application process. Volkswagen AG wishes to emphasize that no software has been installed in the 3-liter V6 diesel power units to alter emissions characteristics in a forbidden manner. Volkswagen will cooperate fully with the EPA clarify this matter in its entirety. EPA's Notice of Violation is below. View full article
  22. The sh*t is hitting the fan. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and California Air Resources Board (CARB) announced today that Volkswagen had illegal 'defeat device' software installed on a number of their vehicles equipped with the 3.0L TDI V6 to evade diesel emission testing. The two parties say the software allowed the TDI engine to emit nine times the legally allowable pollution limit. Vehicles involved in this latest allegation include, 2014 Volkswagen Toureg TDI 2015 Porsche Cayenne Diesel 2016 Audi A6 TDI, A7 TDI, A8 TDI, A8L TDI, Q5 TDI “VW has once again failed its obligation to comply with the law that protects clean air for all Americans. All companies should be playing by the same rules. EPA, with our state and federal partners, will continue to investigate these serious matters, to secure the benefits of the Clean Air Act, ensure a level playing field for responsible businesses, and to ensure consumers get the environmental performance they expect,” said Cynthia Giles, assistant administrator of the Office for EPA’s Enforcement and Compliance Assurance. Source: The Detroit News UPDATE: Volkswagen has issued a statement on the EPA's announcement. The United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) informed Volkswagen Aktiengesellschaft on Monday that vehicles with V6 TDI engines had a software function which had not been adequately described in the application process. Volkswagen AG wishes to emphasize that no software has been installed in the 3-liter V6 diesel power units to alter emissions characteristics in a forbidden manner. Volkswagen will cooperate fully with the EPA clarify this matter in its entirety. EPA's Notice of Violation is below.
  23. The Chevrolet Colorado and GMC Canyon Diesels are feeling the backlash of the Volkswagen diesel scandal. According to Automotive News, General Motors has been told by EPA and California Air Resources Board (CARB) will not certify the trucks until they have undergone tests in the lab and on the road. “The EPA and CARB told us they are going to do on-road testing," said Scott Yackley, assistant chief engineer for Chevrolet Trucks. GM says the additional testing could push back the launch of the diesel trucks, which are expected to launch in the fourth quarter. But GM is confident that the trucks will pass the tests. “Part of our development process is on-road and off-road [laboratory] testing,” said Yackley. Source: Automotive News (Subscription Required) View full article
  24. The Chevrolet Colorado and GMC Canyon Diesels are feeling the backlash of the Volkswagen diesel scandal. According to Automotive News, General Motors has been told by EPA and California Air Resources Board (CARB) will not certify the trucks until they have undergone tests in the lab and on the road. “The EPA and CARB told us they are going to do on-road testing," said Scott Yackley, assistant chief engineer for Chevrolet Trucks. GM says the additional testing could push back the launch of the diesel trucks, which are expected to launch in the fourth quarter. But GM is confident that the trucks will pass the tests. “Part of our development process is on-road and off-road [laboratory] testing,” said Yackley. Source: Automotive News (Subscription Required)
  25. This afternoon, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) issued a notice of violation to Volkswagen for skirting clean-air rules on some of their TDI models. The EPA says certain Volkswagen and Audi diesel models from 2009 to 2015 model years had special emission control software that could detect when a car is undergoing EPA emissions testing and turns on the full emissions controls. The software would turn off the controls during real-world driving. This allowed Volkswagen not to equip urea injection and/or more complex emission-control systems onto some of their vehicles. “These violations are very serious, not only because illegal defeat devices results in excess emissions many times the allowable standard, but also because VW was concealing the facts from EPA, the state of California and consumers. We expected better from VW,” said Cynthia Giles, assistant administrator for the EPA’s Office of Enforcement and Compliance Assurance in a conference call. Federal officials say they were notified about the difference in emission levels after researchers at West Virginia University started questioning the emission levels on Volkwagen's diesel models. From there, the EPA and California Air Resources Board opened an investigation. “In September, after EPA and CARB demanded an explanation for the identified emission problems, Volkswagen admitted that the cars contained defeat devices,” the EPA said in a statement. The models in question include, 2009 – 2015 Audi A3 TDI 2009 – 2015 Volkswagen Beetle TDI 2009 – 2015 Volkswagen Golf TDI 2009 – 2015 Volkswagen Jetta TDI 2014 – 2015 Volkswagen Passat TDI Now the EPA is asking Volkswagen to recall the affected vehicles, though they do note that the vehicles are safe to drive. The EPA hasn't ordered any fines at this time, as the investigation is still ongoing. Federal law allows the EPA to levy a maximum fine of $37,500 per vehicle. With around 482,000 vehicles with the illegal software, Volkswagen could be looking at a maximum fine of $18 billion dollars. "VW is cooperating with the investigation; we are unable to comment further at this time," the company said in a statement. Source: Automotive News (Subscription Required), Green Car Reports, EPA Press Release is on Page 2 EPA, California Notify Volkswagen of Clean Air Act Violations Release Date: 09/18/2015 Contact Information: press@epa.gov Carmaker allegedly used software that circumvents emissions testing for certain air pollutants Washington - Today, EPA is issuing a notice of violation (NOV) of the Clean Air Act (CAA) to Volkswagen AG, Audi AG, and Volkswagen Group of America, Inc. (collectively referred to as Volkswagen). The NOV alleges that four-cylinder Volkswagen and Audi diesel cars from model years 2009-2015 include software that circumvents EPA emissions standards for certain air pollutants. California is separately issuing an In-Use Compliance letter to Volkswagen, and EPA and the California Air Resources Board (CARB) have both initiated investigations based on Volkswagen’s alleged actions. “Using a defeat device in cars to evade clean air standards is illegal and a threat to public health,” said Cynthia Giles, Assistant Administrator for the Office of Enforcement and Compliance Assurance. “Working closely with the California Air Resources Board, EPA is committed to making sure that all automakers play by the same rules. EPA will continue to investigate these very serious matters.” “Working with US EPA we are taking this important step to protect public health thanks to the dogged investigations by our laboratory scientists and staff,” said Air Resources Board Executive Officer Richard Corey. “Our goal now is to ensure that the affected cars are brought into compliance, to dig more deeply into the extent and implications of Volkswagen’s efforts to cheat on clean air rules, and to take appropriate further action.” As described in the NOV, a sophisticated software algorithm on certain Volkswagen vehicles detects when the car is undergoing official emissions testing, and turns full emissions controls on only during the test. The effectiveness of these vehicles’ pollution emissions control devices is greatly reduced during all normal driving situations. This results in cars that meet emissions standards in the laboratory or testing station, but during normal operation, emit nitrogen oxides, or NOx, at up to 40 times the standard. The software produced by Volkswagen is a “defeat device,” as defined by the Clean Air Act. The Clean Air Act requires vehicle manufacturers to certify to EPA that their products will meet applicable federal emission standards to control air pollution, and every vehicle sold in the U.S. must be covered by an EPA-issued certificate of conformity. Motor vehicles equipped with defeat devices, which reduce the effectiveness of the emission control system during normal driving conditions, cannot be certified. By making and selling vehicles with defeat devices that allowed for higher levels of air emissions than were certified to EPA, Volkswagen violated two important provisions of the Clean Air Act. EPA and CARB uncovered the defeat device software after independent analysis by researchers at West Virginia University, working with the International Council on Clean Transportation, a non-governmental organization, raised questions about emissions levels, and the agencies began further investigations into the issue. In September, after EPA and CARB demanded an explanation for the identified emission problems, Volkswagen admitted that the cars contained defeat devices. NOx pollution contributes to nitrogen dioxide, ground-level ozone, and fine particulate matter. Exposure to these pollutants has been linked with a range of serious health effects, including increased asthma attacks and other respiratory illnesses that can be serious enough to send people to the hospital. Exposure to ozone and particulate matter have also been associated with premature death due to respiratory-related or cardiovascular-related effects. Children, the elderly, and people with pre-existing respiratory disease are particularly at risk for health effects of these pollutants. VW may be liable for civil penalties and injunctive relief for the violations alleged in the NOV. The allegations cover roughly 482,000 diesel passenger cars sold in the United States since 2008. Affected diesel models include: Jetta (Model Years 2009 – 2015) Beetle (Model Years 2009 – 2015) Audi A3 (Model Years 2009 – 2015) Golf (Model Years 2009 – 2015) Passat (Model Years 2014-2015) It is incumbent upon Volkswagen to initiate the process that will fix the cars’ emissions systems. Car owners should know that although these vehicles have emissions exceeding standards, these violations do not present a safety hazard and the cars remain legal to drive and resell. Owners of cars of these models and years do not need to take any action at this time.

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