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Volkswagen's Diesel Worldwide Emission Deception
Volkswagen's success story with its clean diesel was its greatest success story in America, where some of the world's toughest emission tests are. Among them is California's stringent smog tests. It was such a success, advocates of it conducted their own tests to persuade other countries to follow with same strict standards.
But the bubble popped when West Virginia University conducted their own tests on two models of VW diesels from 2009 and 2012. When the results of the emission test were way over the acceptable limits, they reported to the EPA and California Air Resources Board, the guardians of clean air. VW blamed it on technical issues and later recalled some models that only fixed the problem modestly. Unhappy with the excuse and fix, the EPA refused to allow VW to sell its 2016 diesel models. It was then, only then, did VW admit to its software trickery that allowed VW diesels for seven years to pass strict emission tests, when in reality, they failed. The VW software switches on pollution controls during smog tests and then off so drivers get much better performance. It would allow a diesel car to emit 40 times the amount allowed of nitrogen oxide. The software detects when a smog test is in progress and automatically adjusts readings. True, totally ingenious, but VW is going to pay very heavily for the deception.
VW must recall 500,000 models made between 2009-15 and must make the repairs to all for free and fined $18 billion. But, that is only ine USA. Worldwide, VW admitted that 11 million cars in Europe and elsewhere have the same software. One in four cars sold in Europe are VW diesels. VW has since set aside nearly $8 billion dollars for make the repairs that will require additional hardware. That is nearly half of their yearly profit! In just one day, VW lost $15 billion in market value in a single day. Will they be able to survive?
But it doesn't there.How is VW going schedule the fix of 500,000 cars in the USA. They have stopped selling the diesel now. How is the vehicle motor registration in various states going to handle owners to retake the emissions test? Will the second test be free? What if the owner does not have the car fixed because of the great inconvenience? Repairs could be days. Then, their is the public trust factor.
President Obama now has expanded the VW fraud and looking for other diesel cheat devices from other makers. The cars recalled are Jetta, Beetle, Audi A3, Golf from 2009-2015 and Passat 2012-15. But there is good news- if you are a owner of 2008 or less VW diesel, the cars are great, pass the smog and get great MPG.