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Volkswagen to refit 1 million more diesel cars in Germany
by Staff Writers
Frankfurt Am Main (AFP) July 27, 2017


Berlin orders recall of 22,000 Porsches over emissions cheating
Berlin (AFP) July 27, 2017 - Germany on Thursday ordered luxury car brand Porsche to recall 22,000 vehicles across Europe over emissions test cheating amid a widening election-year scandal.

Transport Minister Alexander Dobrindt told reporters that "illegal" software disguising the true level of polluting emissions had been discovered in Porsche's Cayenne and Macan models, which must now be fixed.

"We will order a legally binding recall for these vehicles, just as we have in other cases," he said.

Dobrindt said that because the affected models are still being manufactured, Berlin would also deny any permits for the vehicles "until new software is available".

Porsche is a subsidiary of Volkswagen, which admitted in 2015 to cheating regulatory emissions tests in 11 million diesel vehicles worldwide.

Prosecutors in the southwestern city of Stuttgart, a bastion of Germany's all-important car industry, had said earlier this month they had opened a probe against persons unknown working for Porsche.

The investigation into "suspicion of fraud and false advertising" stems from "possible manipulation of exhaust treatment in diesel vehicles from Porsche AG".

Porsche spokesman Christian Weiss told AFP at the time that the company "takes the prosecutors' investigation very seriously" and would "do the utmost to clear up the issue comprehensively and as quickly as possible".

Volkswagen, the world's largest carmaker, has admitted to using so-called "defeat device" software to cheat regulatory nitrogen oxides emissions tests.

The devices allowed the cars to spew up to 40 times the permissible limits of nitrogen oxide during normal driving, but this was hidden during emissions testing.

The issue has gained fresh urgency less than two months before Germany holds a general election in which Chancellor Angela Merkel, a champion of the auto industry, is widely expected to win a fourth term.

Carmaker Volkswagen said Thursday it would offer to refit almost a million more diesel cars in Germany to reduce harmful emissions, as the country's auto industry is racked by overlapping scandals.

At an industry-government summit on August 2, Volkswagen "will offer to refit four million vehicles and thereby significantly reduce emissions" chief executive Matthias Mueller said after meeting Environment Minister Barbara Hendricks.

Of those four million, some 2.5 are covered by a recall of diesel vehicles the world's biggest carmaker introduced after admitting in 2015 to cheating regulatory emissions tests in 11 million diesel vehicles worldwide, a company spokesman said.

The remainder include some 600,000 German V6 and V8 diesel vehicles from VW subsidiary Audi announced Friday, of around 850,000 across Europe.

That leaves around 900,000 previously unannounced cars covered by Thursday's announcement, including models from subsidiary Porsche and VW's Touareg sport utility vehicles, as well as some of its Transporter vans.

The spokesman added that the company had not yet decided how to reduce emissions in the latest tranche of vehicles announced and that its statement did not constitute a recall.

German consumers are increasingly disenchanted with diesel vehicles after Volkswagen's long-running scandal and fears that some cities could ban them from their streets at times of peak pollution.

Manufacturers are desperate to avoid such bans and are trying to convince politicians of their good faith ahead of next week's summit, where participants are expected to find ways of reducing emissions of harmful nitrogen oxides (NOx).

Mercedes-Benz maker Daimler recently announced a voluntary recall for some three million vehicles across Europe to reduce NOx output.

tgb/hmn/jh

VOLKSWAGEN

DAIMLER

CAR TECH
UK to ban sale of petrol and diesel cars by 2040
London (AFP) July 26, 2017
Britain said Wednesday it will outlaw the sale of new diesel and petrol cars and vans from 2040 in a bid to cut air pollution but environmental groups said the proposals did not go far enough. Environment minister Michael Gove announced the move as part of the government's keenly-awaited Pounds 3 billion ($3.9 billion, 3.4 billion euro) air pollution plan, which will demand that councils propose m ... read more

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