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Volkswagen TDI Emissions

Volkswagen Falsified Emissions Information for Clean Diesel Engines

Volkswagen has come under scrutiny following the discovery that the automaker purposely falsified emissions information for several of its TDI clean diesel vehicles. Currently, 482,000 vehicles are affected in the United States and 11 million are affected across the globe.


Volkswagen has been accused of putting software into their TDI diesel vehicles which concealed the true emission levels of the vehicles. The software was designed to recognize when the car was hooked up for emissions tests and switch the vehicle into a cleaner operating mode.

After testing was completed, the vehicles would revert back to their standard operating mode with emissions increasing as much a 4,000%.


Models currently cited by the United States Environmental Protection Agency are:

  • 2009-2015 Volkswagen Jetta TDI
  • 2009-2014 Volkswagen Jetta SportWagen TDI
  • 2012-2015 Volkswagen Beetle TDI
  • 2012-2015 Volkswagen Beetle Convertible TDI
  • 2010-2015 Audi A3 TDI
  • 2010-2015 Volkswagen Golf TDI
  • 2015 Volkswagen Golf SportWagen TDI
  • 2012-2015 Volkswagen Passat TDI
  • 2009-2016 Volkswagen Touareg
  • 2013-2016 Porsche Cayenne
  • 2014-2016 Audi A6 Quattro
  • 2014-2016 Audi A7 Quattro
  • 2014-2016 Audi A8
  • 2014-2016 Audi A8L
  • 2014-2016 Audi Q5
  • 2009-2016 Audi Q7

The manufacturer is facing up to $18 billion in fines in the U.S. alone, and analysts suggest the resulting vehicle recalls could be the most costly in history.


Reports indicate the issue could hit a larger market, potentially spreading to Porche, BMW, and Mercedes vehicles.

According to testing by the Transportation and Environment (T&E) organization, a European environmental watchdog group, the data from the International Council of Clean Transport (ICCT) suggests:

  • An Audie A8 produced nitrogen oxide emissions 21.9 times the legal limit
  • A BMW X3 diesel was 9.9 times above the legal limit
  • An Opal Zafira Tourer (a GM brand) produced emissions 9.5 times the legal limit

Further, T&E states that real-world tested showed that every Mercedes-Benz model produced 50% more CO2 than laboratory testing and that the BMW 5 Series diesel model emitted just under 50% more emissions.


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