Environmental regulators have detected three new diesel models, including cars by Audi and Porsche, which have defeat devices installed to cheat on emissions testing.
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency issued a notice of violation today to Volkswagen AG, Audi AG and Porsche AG, over the following vehicles:
- 2014 VW Touareg.
- 2015 Porsche Cayenne.
- 2016 Audi A6 Quattro, A7 Quattro, A8, A8L, and Q5.
It is the second such notice of violation issued to Volkswagen by the EPA in its emissions testing scandal. It is the first time Audi and Porsche have been confirmed as creating cars with the cheat device.
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These vehicles from the model years 2014 to 2016 all have 3-litre engines, unlike the earlier notice, which affected models with 2-litre engines.
The cars have software that ensures they emit less than the legal limit of nitrogen oxide during testing conditions, but revert to "normal" mode and emit nine times the legal limit in road conditions, an EPA spokesman said.
The vehicles have one or more auxiliary emission control devices that the company failed to disclose to regulators as required by law.
Testing in Canada
The EPA, the California Air Resources Board and Environment Canada began testing all 2015 and 2016 diesel models available in North America in September, using new testing procedures.
The NOV is based on vehicle emission testing performed by the EPA's National Vehicle and Fuel Emissions Laboratory, CARB's Haagen-Smit Laboratory, and Environment Canada's River Road Laboratory.
About 10,000 cars on U.S. roads are affected. The number of Canadian cars is not yet known.
These violations are in addition to the notice of violation issued on Sept. 18 and the ongoing investigation on certain 2.0 litre engines for 2009-15 vehicles.
Testing is ongoing, said Janet McCabe, assistant administrator for the EPA Office of Air and Radiation, in a media conference call. She said the environmental regulator has been communicating with Volkswagen about a recall plan and appropriate fix for the vehicles named in the first notice of violation, but has yet to see a satisfactory fix.
"Today we are requiring VW Group to address these issues. This is a very serious public health matter," said Richard Corey, executive officer of the California Air Resources Board.
Exposure to ozone and particulate matter caused by diesel emissions has 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 of health effects.