Volkswagen, Audi Ordered to Recall 500,000 Vehicles after EPA Accuses Automaker of Cheating on Emissions Testing

By Paul Riegler on 18 September 2015
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DSC_0186The Environmental Protection Agency ordered German automaker Volkswagen to recall almost half a million four-cylinder Volkswagen and Audi diesel cars saying they had software that circumvented EPA emissions standards for certain air pollutants.

The models affected were sold from 2008 through 2015, and total 482,000 vehicles. The device was programmed to turn on the full emissions control system in a car only when it was undergoing testing. At other times, the controls were turned off, which meant that the vehicles polluted far more than reported by the manufacturer. The pollutant that the system was concealing was nitrogen oxide, which is a major factor in creating smog and ozone.

Specific models impacted by the recall include the Jetta, the Beetle, the Golf, the Passat, and the Audi A3.

“Using a defeat device in cars to evade clean air standards is illegal and a threat to public health,” said Cynthia Giles, the E.P.A.’s assistant administrator for the Office of Enforcement and Compliance. “Working closely with the California Air Resources Board, E.P.A. is committed to making sure that all automakers play by the same rules. E.P.A. will continue to investigate these very serious violations.”

The state of California issued a similar notice of violation to the automaker and both agencies, in conjunction with the Department of Justice, are investigating the matter.

(Photo: Accura Media Group)