Volkswagen: new EU 6 diesels clear of software cheat, but up to 11M EA189 diesels worldwide affected
In a statement issued this morning, Volkswagen AG said that new vehicles from the Volkswagen Group with EU 6 diesel engines currently available in the European Union comply with legal requirements and environmental standards. The engine control software in those vehicles does not affect handling, consumption or emissions, the company said.
Although the engine management software that enabled the cheating on NOx targets (earlier post) is installed in other Volkswagen Group vehicles with diesel engines, the company added, for the majority of those engines the software does not have any effect. However, the software “discrepancies” do relate to vehicles with the Type EA189 2.0-liter diesel engines—involving some eleven million vehicles worldwide. (Earlier post.)
Volkswagen said that a the noticeable deviation between bench test results and actual road use was established solely for this type of engine.
(When the engine control software detected regulatory testing on a dyno, it ran a different, more emissions-stringent engine calibration to meet test requirements than when it detected regular use. As a result, real-world NOx emissions increased by a factor of 10 to 40 times above the EPA compliant levels, depending on the drive cycle. Earlier post.)
Volkswagen originally developed the 2.0L EA189 TDI engine as the first four-cylinder diesel engine with four-valve technology in the Volkswagen Group for use in the Touran, and then in the Golf in 2004. The engine was originally spec’d as EU 4-compliant. The EA189 made its debut in the North American marketplace in model year 2009 as a Tier 2/Bin5-compliant solution, initially in the Volkswagen Jetta, followed by other models.
Volkswagen said it is “working intensely” to eliminate these deviations through technical measures. The company is in contact with the relevant authorities and the German Federal Motor Transport Authority (KBA – Kraftfahrtbundesamt).
To cover the necessary service measures and other efforts to win back the trust of its customers, Volkswagen plans to set aside a provision of some €6.5 billion (US$7.3 bilion) recognized in the profit and loss statement in the third quarter of the current fiscal year. Due to the ongoing investigations the amounts estimated may be subject to revaluation.
Earnings targets for the Group for 2015 will be adjusted accordingly.