FCA Files Diesel Engine Certification Papers For MY2017 Vehicles To Add Update

May 24, 2017, 05:24
FCA Files Diesel Engine Certification Papers For MY2017 Vehicles To Add Update

The U.S. Department of Justice filed a lawsuit against Jeep and Ram parent company Fiat Chrysler Automobiles on Tuesday, alleging that the automaker used undisclosed software that constitutes "defeat devices" in its U.S. models that enables them to emit lower amounts of pollutants during emissions tests than in real-world driving.

The U.S. Department of Justice on Tuesday filed a legal complaint against Fiat Chrysler, alleging that the automaker violated federal emissions laws with "cheat devices" - similar to those discovered past year at Volkswagen.

Since then, Fiat, the EPA, and the California Air Resources spent months negotiating before deciding to pursue a lawsuit. FCA said in a statement it was "annoyed at the justice department decision and meant to defend itself "strongly", in particular against the possible charge of deliberately installing cheat devices". Fiat Chrysler argued that its emissions-control technology complied with the law, and the company offered potential software fixes to address the issue.

The lawsuit could ultimately help lead to a settlement, as in an earlier probe of Volkswagen AG that will cost VW up to $US25 billion ($33.5 billion), but which affected a much larger number of vehicles.

The lawsuit against Fiat Chrysler states almost 104,000 vehicles are "equipped with software functions that were not disclosed to regulators during the certification application process, and that the vehicles contain defeat devices", the Justice Department says.

Last year, the government accused Volkswagen of cheating on tests, and the company ended up pleading guilty to criminal charges in a scandal that cost VW more than $20 billion in the USA alone. The Department of Justice sued Volkswagen over the "defeat devices".

According to the compliant, 104,000 vehicles equipped with the company's 3.0-liter diesel engine have "software functions" that were not disclosed during the certification process.

FCA US expects that following EPA and CARB approval, owners of the 2014-2016 MY vehicles will be able to receive the software updates at their dealerships. If it does, FCA said the updated software should not impact performance or gas mileage.

Shares fell 4.1% to $10.32 in recent trading.

Reuters reported on May 17 that the Justice Department was preparing to file a civil lawsuit against the automaker.

The company issued a statement saying it "is now reviewing the complaint, but is disappointed" that the suit had been filed.

FCA US said it "strongly hoped to be able to meet the EPA's enforcement division as soon as possible and representatives of the new administration, to show that FCA's (emissions) control strategies are justified and therefore do not constitute defeat devices according to the applicable rules, and to promptly resolve the question".

FCA, the seventh-largest automaker in the world based on total annual vehicle sales, is an global automotive group.

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