Economy

Germany hits Mercedes with mass diesel recall

Germany hits Mercedes with mass diesel recall”

Mercedes is facing fresh scrutiny over its cars' emissions, after the German Federal Motor Transport Agency, or KBA, ordered parent company Daimler to recall 238,000 vehicles in Germany. The authority said it suspected the emissions control devices were being used in the bulk of Daimler's new Euro 6 diesel auto fleet, encompassing some 1 million vehicles, according to the report.

Daimler said it would refit the software but denied any wrongdoing.

Mercedes-Benz C-Class and Vito models with diesel engines and a sports utility variant of the sedan, known as the GLC, were the main cars found to be at fault, the ministry said. The report claims that, during KBA's investigation, five "illegal switch-off devices" have been discovered in the bulk of the automaker's Euro 6 diesel motors, encompassing at least one million vehicles in total.

Since rival Volkswagen admitted in 2015 to cheating U.S. emissions tests, German automakers including Daimler and BMW have faced a backlash against diesel technology in which they have invested billions of euros.

Vehicles kept to legal emissions limits for harmful substances like nitrogen oxides (NOx) during lab tests, only to exceed them as much as 40 times in on-road driving. Last year, Mercedes-Benz retrofitted roughly 3 million cars with modified emissions controls to bring those cars into compliance with Euro 5 and Euro 6 regulations.

Germany can only order the recall of vehicles within its own borders, or of those vehicles issued with a pan-European road-worthiness certification via German authorities. A spokesman for the company declined to comment on specifics regarding the case, but said: "We are cooperating to a full extent and transparently with the KBA and the federal transport ministry". "Those functions are part of a complex emission control system created to ensure robust emission control in different driving conditions and over the lifetime of a vehicle".

Ellinghorst estimated the cost to Daimler to be less than 100 million euros.

'We don't see any evidence that Daimler was designing software to deliberately cheat on emission testing, ' he said.



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