Why you always lyin', VW?
Volkswagen may have to recall 482,000 cars after it was revealed that the German automaker had installed a "defeat device" to help its recent four-cylinder diesel engines pass emissions tests. The device detects when the car is undergoing emissions testing and when signaled turns on emission controls to full. When the car isn't being tested those features are turned off and pollution levels increase significantly (as in 40 times more).
The cheating was discovered by researchers at the University of West Virginia who were working with the International Council on Clean Transportation. The researchers found that the diesel engines produced too much nitrogen oxide. According to "The New York Times," nitrogen oxide contributes to the creation of ozone and smog and has also been linked to asthma and other nasty breathing diseases. Fun stuff. Volkswagen admitted wrongdoing only after being questioned by both the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the California Air Resources Board (CARB). Both agencies, and the government in general, are pissed.
EPA and CARB both issued notices of violation, with the former saying "it is incumbent" for Volkswagen to recall the models affected. No fines have been issued yet. So, just what cars make up that massive list of dirty emissions cheaters? The list of 482,000 vehicles includes the 2009 to 2015 Volkswagen Jetta, Beetle and Golf. Also on the list are the 2014 and 2015 Passat along with the 2009 to 2015 Audi A3. It's important to note that all the cars, while dirty, are still safe to drive. The US is getting serious about emissions and fuel economy so Volkswagen should take a big hit on this, especially since it so blatantly tried to cheat the system.