The emissions scandal that already has cost Volkswagen billions of dollars and damaged its made-in-Germany reputation broadened Monday to include 3-litre engines in Volkswagen, Audi and Porsche light duty diesel vehicles.
Washington (dpa) - The US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) said it had issued a second notice of violation of the Clean Air Act to the German automaker.
The violations alleged by the EPA on Monday are in addition to the notice it issued September 18 that accused VW of including emission-test evading software in certain 2-litre engines for model year 2009-15 vehicles.
"VW has once again failed its obligation to comply with the law that protects clean air for all Americans," said Cynthia Giles, assistant administrator for the Office for EPA‘s Enforcement and Compliance Assurance. "All companies should be playing by the same rules."
Volkswagen denied the new allegations. A company spokesman told dpa no software was installed in the vehicles named in the second notice to alter the emissions values in an improper way. The company was informed about the new allegations by the EPA on Monday.
VW will cooperate completely with the EPA in order to clarify the facts, the spokesman said.
According to the EPA, the nitrogen oxide emissions from the 3-litre engine models named in the new notice went beyond the limit by a factor of nine.
The exact number of cars worldwide affected by the new notice is not known. The EPA said the notice covered about 10,000 cars sold in the United States since the start of model year 2014. The notice also covers an unknown number of 2016 vehicles.
The specific models are diesel versions of the 2014 VW Touareg, the 2015 Porsche Cayenne and the 2016 Audi most 2016 diesel versions of the Quattro.
The company said last week that up to 11 million of its diesel-powered cars had been fitted with the emissions-test evading software. When the vehicles are being tested, the software detects the test sensors and changes the engine to energy-saving mode.
VW has been in crisis since the EPA first notice of violation announcement in September. Former chief executive Martin Winterkorn stood down to take responsibility for the scandal. Several other managers also left the company. Last week the company said the scandal resulted in a 3.5-billion-euro (3.9-billion-dollar) loss in the third quarter.
In addition to outlays for the recalls, VW is threatened with costs stemming from lawsuits.
VW is preparing to launch in January a costly recall of vehicles fitted with the software. That is expected to take until the end of the year to complete.
EU member states agreed in principle on Wednesday to use road testing from 2017 to help evaluate diesel car emissions, on top of the laboratory tests that have been at the heart of a scandal around the German automotive giant Volkswagen.
Eleven EU countries, including the bloc's economic powerhouse Germany, failed Monday to reach agreement on a disputed financial transaction tax, according to Spanish Finance Minister Luis De Guindos, who expressed hope that a deal can be clinched next month.
Prime Minister David Cameron promised to "tighten the law and change the culture" by cracking down on tax evasion and discouraging "aggressive" tax avoidance on Monday, following the British use of tax havens revealed in the Panama Papers.
The Greek government is presenting new measures to raise value added tax (VAT) on food and services in order to save 1.8 billion euros as one of the preconditions set by international creditors for additional aid for the struggling country.