Dieselgate fallout: Now EVERY US diesel will get new EPA test

The fallout from Volkswagen's emissions cheating continues, with the US Environmental Protection Agency now planning to test every diesel from every manufacturer. VW's admission that its cars would not only fail emissions tests, but that it had installed software into millions of vehicles that would falsify its output to meet the requirements of the EPA and similar agencies in other countries under testing conditions, have prompted a complete overhaul of how such processes operate.

Previously, the EPA operated almost on an honors system. Manufacturers would perform their own tests, and report those numbers to the agency; the EPA would then perform spot tests on select models in the hope of keeping manufacturers honest.

Independent tests on a number of VW cars by a European organization, however, found that the real-world emissions were nowhere near what regulators had been led to believe.

Initially, only one type of engine was believed to be affected, but now VW has admitted that at least two of its diesel engines used the software patch, and gasoline engines too.

Faced with the mass flouting of its regulations, the EPA now says all recent diesels will require testing, rather than just a sample.

"We are very anxious to find out if there are any other programs out there," Christopher Grundler, director of the office of transportation and air quality at the Environmental Protection Agency, said in a statement, the NY Times reports.

The tests will focus on 2015 and 2016 model year cars, and the EPA will no longer be upfront with manufacturers about what, exactly, they'll be looking at and how.

"Manufacturers have asked us what the test conditions would be," Grundler explained, "and we've told them that they don't have a need to know. It will be random."

So far, repeat testing has not found any other automaker using similar so-called "defeat devices" to cheat on testing.

VIA NY Times