German automaker Volkswagen AG was sent teetering after scientists at West Virginia University discovered that its newest four-cylinder diesel car models had software that enabled them to cheat on emissions tests.
The software, known as a “defeat device,” switches emission controls on during testing and off during normal operation, allowing the vehicles to emit 40 times the allowable level of nitrogen oxide set by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.
Volkswagen admitted to installing the devices after being confronted by the EPA. Former CEO Martin Winterkorn is currently under investigation for suspected fraud.
Read about vehicle emissions on page 11.
— Chris Robey