Wednesday, 20 February, 2019

German ministry says 774,000 Mercedes cars contain unauthorized software

Mercedes-Benz Mercedes-Benz
Nellie Chapman | 13 June, 2018, 12:15

Since rival Volkswagen admitted in 2015 to cheating US emissions tests, German carmakers including VW, Daimler and BMW have faced a backlash against diesel technology in which they have invested billions of euros.

However, an updated Reuters report is claiming that figure has ballooned to 1 million vehicles, the bulk of Daimler's new Euro 6 diesel fleet.

"The federal government will order an immediate official recall because of illegal defeat devices", Transport Minister Andreas Scheuer said in a statement.

The German transport Ministry, the Kraftfahrt-Bundesamt (KBA), has ordered the carmaker to recall 238,000 vehicles to rectify unauthorised diesel emissions cheating software. The diesel Mercedes C-Class C220d and GLC 220d, as well as the Vito 119CDI, are said to be affected, with German authorities demanding the recall after "illegal switch-off devices" were detected. It's unclear exactly which models are being recalled, but the Vito 119 CDI, C 220 d and GLC 220 d have been identified, according to Autocar.

The Transport Ministry only has authority to force the recall of vehicles within Germany.

Daimler Chief Executive Dieter Zetsche said on Monday that the carmaker had found a technical solution for updating the software on its vehicles, and he therefore expected the company would avoid a fine.

Mercedes-Benz GLC-Class SUV
Enlarge ImageMercedes-Benz is recalling 774,000 diesel models in Europe including examples of its GLC-Class SUV. Mercedes-Benz

Zetsche or Daimler didn't say anything about what the company's software may be created to do, but it's the second large fix for the automaker in as many years.

The authority said it suspected the emissions control devices were being used in the bulk of Daimler's new Euro 6 diesel vehicle fleet, insisting that the devices were in breach of current regulations.

The reports allege that two engines (OM 642 and OM 651) come with devices that shut down emissions controls under certain situations.

Daimler said it would refit the software but denied any wrongdoing.

Speaking with the American publication, Arndt Ellinghorst, analyst with Evercore ISI in London, said: "We don't see any evidence that Daimler was designing software to deliberately cheat on emission testing".