After Volkswagen, Daimler is now in hot water over a years-old decision to cheat on U.S. emissions tests. The German car maker is under suspicion that it has used illegal software to pass the tests since 2016.
In 2016, a handful of drivers sued the company, accusing it of implanting a piece of software in their cars to meet the stricter emissions standards in the United States. Newspaper Bild am Sonntag recently reported that authorities probing Daimler found the illegal software in some of the cars.
The German newspaper also said that the company’s employees had expressed doubt that the cars would be able to pass the emission tests in the United States even before Volkswagen was caught red-handed in a similar scandal.
The company’s own testing reportedly revealed that some Mercedes models would have failed the U.S. tests for nitrogen oxide limit by a large margin.
Daimler Used illegal Defeat Devices to Cheat On U.S. Emissions Tests
People familiar with the matter said Daimler used complex pieces of software which are illegal in Europe and U.S. to cheat on U.S. emissions tests. One type of software called “Bi 15” instructed the car to shut down the emissions cleaning system after 16 miles on the road.
Another mechanism dubbed “Slipguard” could tell if a vehicle was being tested by measuring some parameters regarding acceleration and speed. Bild am Sonntag claims it has e-mail exchanges between some of Daimler’s senior workers wondering if those additions to the cars were even legal.
Another German news outlet, Der Spiegel, found that the company plans to recall the Mercedes-Benz Vito in Germany in the following weeks. According to the magazine, authorities found that the vans contain a defeat device that can instruct the car on the amount of AdBlue to be released by the engine.
AdBlue is broken down into nitrogen oxide, a highly pollutant gas behind acid rain and smog in many developed countries. The same illegal defeat device was allegedly used in cars shipped to the U.S. to cheat on U.S. emissions tests.
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