The Environmental Protection Agency ordered Volkswagen to fix nearly 500,000 diesel cars on Friday that the agency said are in violation of clean air laws by using software that cheats on EPA emissions tests.
The cars, all built in the last seven years, include a device programmed to detect when they are undergoing official emissions testing, the EPA said, adding that the cars only turn on full emissions control systems during that testing. The controls are turned off during normal driving situations, the EPA said.
The 482,000 cars affected could bring a fine of up to $37,500 per car coming to almost $18 billion in penalties.
- Jetta (Model Years 2009 – 2015)
- Beetle (Model Years 2009 – 2015)
- Audi A3 (Model Years 2009 – 2015)
- Golf (Model Years 2009 – 2015)
- Passat (Model Years 2014-2015)
The U.S. government is not requiring a recall as there are no safety concerns and the cars can continue to be bought and sold.
It could take at least a year for Volkswagen to re-engineer the engines to pass emissions without the cheat device installed.
Once the remedy is available, Volkswagen and the EPA will have to come to an agreement on a plan to “fix” the cheating diesel cars already on the road.