Audi Admits It Created Dieselgate Software Used by Volkswagen in 1999
In yet another surprising revelation related to Volkswagen diesel emission scandal, Audi has reportedly confessed that it created Diselgate – the diesel emissions tests cheating software that its parent company used in its cars. The Ingolstadt-based luxury carmaker told German newspaper Handelsblatt that it had built the so-called defeat devices which cut emissions back in 1999, years before Volkswagen used them to cheat diesel emissions tests.
It has been reported that although engineers at Audi developed the software, which was capable of turning off certain engine functions in 1999, it was never used by the VW luxury division. Around 2005, Volkswagen engineers at the firm’s Wolfsburg headquarters, were getting a hard time to come out with a solution to bring down nitrogen oxide emissions below legal thresholds. This is when the firm started to install the software developed by Audi in 1999.
Earlier last year in September, Volkswagen, Europe’s largest auto manufacturer, admitted it had manipulated the engines of around 11 million diesel cars, including its VW, Audi, Porsche, Skoda and Seat brands. Currently the carmaker is under ongoing investigations by U.S. law firm Jones Day into the diesel emissions scandal and thus Volkswagen and Audi both have declined to comment on this report. Volkswagen has said Jones Day will publish a “substantial report” on its findings by the end of April. Volkswagen’s supervisory board is due to discuss the potential costs of the emissions scandal and approve 2015 earnings on April 22, a day after a deadline for VW and U.S. regulators to agree a solution for U.S. cars fitted with the software.
While this scandal did not have any extensive impact in the Indian car market, earlier this month, the company did a recall of 3877 Vento sedans in the country on account of exceeding Carbon Monoxide (CO) emissions. The recall pertains to the Vento diesel with the new 1.5-litre engine and a manual transmission. However, Volkswagen claimed that the Vento recall is separate from the global NOx emissions scandal.