Volkswagen announces emissions ‘defeat device’ fixes

Volkswagen has revealed the technical fixes that will be put in place to “solve the NOx exhaust emissions issue in Europe.”

The so-called ‘dieselgate’ scandal broke in September when the US Environmental Protection Agency discovered that Volkswagen Group cars fitted with the EA189 diesel engine had a ‘defeat device’ embedded in the engine management computer that allowed the cars to produce illegal levels of nitrogen oxide emissions in real-world conditions, yet still pass laboratory tests.

VW has since been working on a fix, which has now been certified by Germany’s Federal Motor Transport Authority.

Cars with the 1.6-litre EA189 engine will be fitted with a “flow transformer” which sits in front of the air mass sensor. It is described as a “mesh” which “calms” the airflow to the senor, improving its accuracy and thus allowing the engine management to better calculate the “optimum combustion process.” In addition, a software update will be carried out. Volkswagen claims the fix will take less than an hour to implement.

Cars with the 2.0-litre EA189 engine will only need a software update, taking around half an hour.

Volkswagen plans to start the recall in January and expects the process of fixing the affected cars to take the full calendar year. The other VW Group brands affected – Audi, SEAT, Skoda and Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles – will carry out the same fixes within the same time frame.

A fix for the 1.2-litre, three-cylinder diesel engine also affected will be certified within the next couple of weeks and is expected to be rolled out a short time after the recall starts.

In a statement, Volkswagen insisted that once the fixes are in place “the vehicles will comply with applicable emissions standards,” and that there will be “no adverse effects on fuel consumption and performance.”

It also reiterated that, in the meantime, “the vehicles remain technically safe and can therefore be driven on public roads without any limitation.”

Fixes for affected cars in the USA and Canada have yet to be confirmed.

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By Only Motors

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