Audi has confirmed that 2.1 million diesel units worldwide are equipped with special software to defeat emissions tests, Reuters reports.
Approximately 1.42 million vehicles with so-called EU5 engines can be found in Western Europe, and almost 13,000 in the U.S., an Audi spokesman said on Monday. Affected models include the Audi A1, A3, A4, A5, A6, TT, Q3, and Q5.
Meanwhile, 1.2 million VW-built, Skoda-branded vehicles from the 2009-2013 model years also have this cheating device.
According to an article in Germany’s Bild that was quoted by BBC and La Presse, software supplier Bosch warned Volkswagen as early as 2007 that it should only be used in company tests and not for normal driving, where it would be illegal. Bosch has refused to comment based on confidentiality obligations with Volkswagen, however.
In related news, German transport authorities made an ultimatum to Volkswagen: Either they submit a list of compliance measures with deadlines by October 7th or they will have all their illegal vehicles flagged and banned from the road, which would obviously cause headaches to owners. A VW rep has informed them than a plan of action and a vast recall campaign will be launched to make the software perfectly legal.
What’s the latest on Martin Winterkorn?
The former Volkswagen AG CEO, who could receive a huge exit bonus if found not guilty of masterminding this big scam, is now under investigation for fraud in Germany.
So, instead of leaving VW about €60 million richer, he may wind up completely empty-handed.