Volkswagen’s credibility took another huge blow this month after the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) determined the German automaker installed emissions cheating software in even more vehicles than it previously admitted to. The EPA's announcement affects certain Porsche, Audi, and VW models with 3.0 liter V6 engines manufactured by Volkswagen from 2014 to 2016 .
New vehicles affected by VW emissions cheating software include:
The EPA says it discovered the software in VW’s 3.0 liter diesel engines as part of an expanded program to test all diesel models sold in the U.S. for emissions cheating programs. New EPA testing subjects diesel vehicles to real-world driving conditions to properly diagnose vehicle emissions.
The EPA’s disclosure comes as news to fellow German automaker Porsche. Company representatives maintain they were assured the 3.0 liter diesel engines in their 2015 Cayenne models were not installed with any of the so-called “defeat devices.” Porsche is one of VW’s biggest sources of profit and the EPA’s announcement may strain the two company’s lucrative business dealings.
In September, Volkswagen admitted selling over 11 million vehicles from 2009 to 2015 installed with “defeat devices” to cheat emissions testing. Almost half a million vehicles with emissions defeating software were sold in the U.S. The software worked by detecting when the vehicle was undergoing emissions testing and emitting lower than usual nitrogen-oxide during the diagnostic.
VW faces a $37,500 fine for each of its 480,000 violations of the Clean Air Act in the U.S., up to $18 billion total not counting repair costs or legal claims. The newest revelations could add up to $375 million in additional fines.
The German automaker recently announced the creation of a $7.4 billion fund to cover the costs of repairing 11 million diesel cars outfitted worldwide with the “defeat devices.” Some experts estimate Volkswagen could face up to $35 billion in fines, repair costs, and lawsuits by the time the company’s ordeal comes to an end.