German car giants face EU emissions probe

Posted: September 18, 2018 by oldbrew in Emissions, Legal, News, Travel

Note this is not about the original issue of diesel ‘defeat’ devices. Another report at AFP says ‘Daimler and VW are widely reported to be putting themselves forward as whistle-blowers in the case, in order to win leniency with the EU authorities.’ Sounds like a guilty plea.

German carmakers BMW, Daimler and Volkswagen are to face an EU inquiry for allegedly conspiring to restrict diesel emissions treatment systems, BBC News reports.

The European Commission said it was investigating whether they agreed to limit the development of systems to reduce harmful emissions. It said that if proven, this could mean that consumers had been denied the chance to buy less polluting cars.

The firms were raided in 2017 as part of the Commission’s earlier inquiries.

The Commission said its in-depth investigation was intended to assess whether the carmakers colluded, in breach of EU anti-trust rules, to avoid competing on technology to clean up petrol and diesel car emissions.

It said it was focusing on information indicating that the companies, including VW-owned Audi and Porsche, had met to discuss the development and deployment of emissions technology.

Two kinds of emissions control systems are under scrutiny:

— Selective catalytic reduction systems, which reduce nitrogen oxide emissions from diesel engines
— “Otto” particulate filters, which reduce emissions from petrol-driven cars.

“The Commission’s in-depth investigation in this case concerns specific co-operation that is suspected to have aimed at limiting the technical development or preventing to roll-out of technical devices,” it said.

Daimler issued a statement saying that it was co-operating fully with the authorities and had filed a leniency application.

Continued here.

  1. oldbrew says:

    On the trains they’re looking to replace diesels with part-electrification, part-battery power for some services.

    Bombardier electric hybrid train to keep Germany’s green ambitions on track
    September 18, 2018

    World Premiere: Bombardier Transportation Presents a New Battery-Operated Train and Sets Standards for Sustainable Mobility
    September 12, 2018 – Berlin

    “We want to continue to electrify rail transport. A train that can charge its batteries from the overhead line while driving is a huge step toward this and the epitome of innovation,” the State Secretary stated. “On non-electrified or only partially electrified routes, the motto is: move away from diesel on the tracks and toward cleaner and more environmentally-friendly mobility.”
    . . .
    The development of the battery-operated train is subsidised by the German federal government in the framework of an innovation program for electromobility with four million euros.

  2. Bitter@twisted says:

    Oldbrew. I had battery powered cars and trains many years ago.
    They were made by a firm called “Scalectrix”.
    They were good toys, which is more than can be said about Tesla and these new battery trains.
    These latest green toys cost millions more.

  3. oldbrew says:

    B&T – never mind the millions in subsidies, think of the ’emissions’ transferred from the rail line to the local power station 😐

  4. oldbrew says:

    JM – they avoid saying where the energy comes from to make the hydrogen in the first place, and at what cost.

    The report is just an advertising puff.

  5. ivan says:

    Maybe, but I’m not holding my breath waiting, we might get the justification for the emissions out of this investigation.

    Up to now I have assumed the emissions requirements have been the usual green fudge figures pulled out of the air without any real science to back them. Their justification being to stop the production of fossil fuelled transport. If the UN had their way we would be reduced to the horse and cart for transport while the commissars ride around in their latest Rolls pulled by serfs.

  6. J Martin says:

    They’ll probably get their hydrogen from fossil fuels though if they didn’t close their nuclear they could get hydrogen that way or use excess renewables to produce hydrogen.

  7. oldbrew says:

    Electricity is usually required to produce hydrogen. How likely is it that the process is directly connected to a source of renewable power?

  8. oldbrew says:

    Emissions from most diesel cars in Europe greatly exceed laboratory testing levels
    September 21, 2018 by Jennifer Chu, Massachusetts Institute of Technology

    Now a new MIT study reports that Volkswagen is not the only auto manufacturer to make diesel cars that produce vastly more emissions on the road than in laboratory tests. The study, published this month in Atmospheric Environment, finds that in Europe, 10 major auto manufacturers produced diesel cars, sold between 2000 and 2015, that generate up to 16 times more emissions on the road than in regulatory tests—a level that exceeds European limits but does not violate any EU laws.

    Read more at:

  9. oldbrew says:

    25 Sep 2018
    Details of German transport minister’s “diesel deal”

    Carmakers oppose the hardware retrofits as too expensive and don’t want to undertake the updates themselves, but are open to Scheuer’s old-for-new swap idea, the article says. According to the reporters, Scheuer offered that car makers could contribute 80 percent of the retrofitting costs of newer cars, which would leave car owners with having to foot a bill of 600 euros themselves.
    – – –
    New emissions tests push BMW into profit warning

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