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Mercedes-Benz Fined $1.2 Million for Clean Air Act Violation

Mercedes-Benz will pay $1.2 million in civil penalties to resolve its failure to promptly notify the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) about air pollution control defects on numerous 1998-2006 model vehicles. Mercedes must also improve its emissions defect investigation and reporting system to ensure future compliance, at an estimated cost of approximately $1 million per year.

After the EPA initiated its investigation of this matter, Mercedes commenced voluntary recalls for two of the defects and notified owners that it would extend the warranty coverage to address a third defect. Mercedes will incur an estimated cost of $59 million to implement the recalls and the extended warranty.

The vehicles subject to the voluntary recalls and extended warranties may have defective catalytic converters or defective air pumps.

Reliable and effective automobile pollution control systems are essential to protect human health and the environment from harmful automobile emissions. Mercedes’ failure to alert EPA to a number of defects in emission-related components over a multi-year period is a serious violation because it deprived EPA of the opportunity to promptly determine whether emission standards would be exceeded and whether to order a recall of any of these vehicles.

—Sue Ellen Wooldridge, assistant attorney general for the Justice Department’s Environment and Natural Resources Division

The Clean Air Act requires auto manufacturers to file a defect information report with EPA not more than 15 working days after an emission-related defect is found to affect 25 or more vehicles, so that EPA may consider whether the defect will cause emission standards to be exceeded and whether a recall is necessary.

The voluntary recalls and extended warranty will reduce the emissions of harmful pollutants caused by the defects by more than 500 tons cumulatively, according to the EPA. These pollutants include nonmethane hydrocarbons (NMHC), nitrogen oxides (NOx) and carbon monoxide (CO).



What? No calls for Merc-Benz to close thier doors?
If this had been GM this comments section would be flooded with crys for them to close/die/etc.


Sh%$t happends.

Compared to multi-billon dollar settlement with EPA of US truck engines manufacturers allegedly tampering with on-board computers to move gradually from low-emission to low fuel consumption mode, which happened couple of years ago, this is just minor event.

Good to hear that EPA is sharp on their watch.


I saw a talk in C-Span last weekend, where the author of Internal Combustion
was telling about how in 30-40s, GM colluded to replace electric trolleys with
diesel buses. and some of the executives were fined $1. They fought it all the way
to the supreme court.


Yup. They created another corporation to systematically buy up enough electric rail to render the system ineffective, and replaced what they had scrapped with diesel buses. Now buying and scrapping the competition wasn't/isn't(?) illegal, but having the company they created buy from just GM was, so they got a slap on the wrist for that. What's really funny is they funded some historian from the UC system to do a study on how they only scrapped thirty something percent(?) of the light rail companies, so they weren't responsible for it's demise, blah blah... But anecdotally, they started the ball rolling and were probably the largest contributor to light rail's downfall. I mean, if someone were to purchase and scrap about thirty percent of the roads in America, provided they did it intelligently, they could kill the highway system. It's all about rendering the network ineffective with the minimum of resources expended, and this is done by focusing on key routes...


Wow, $1.2 Million! What a huge fine! I could buy a couple of Benz's for that!


Mercedes was fined not for intentional violation, but for failure to report promptly discovered technical problem. Considering their undisputed commitment to spend 60+ millions to fix the problem, I do not see real ground to blame them for gross wrongdoing.


Yeah, Mercedes ,,commenced voluntary recalls" ,,after EPA initiated its investigation".
Just wait for Bluetec recalls...

FYI co2

OK, Mercedes should close their (bourgeois) doors, or require that they only be driven within gated communities.


MB sucks.


MB is always getting away with stuff. I dislike them.

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