European Union and German antitrust authorities investigated the offices of Daimler and Volkswagen on Monday, expanding an inquiry into supposed collusion.
The EU competition watchdog stated in July that it was investigating numerous German automakers on suspicion they had conspired to fix costs in diesel and other technologies over several years.
Daimler suddenly revealed on Friday that it had declared whistleblower status to prevent any fines, while Munich-based competing BMW stated EU officials investigated its offices.
By Monday, investigators were investigating offices at Daimler and taking a look at documents at Volkswagen’s head office in Wolfsburg and at its Audi luxury brand in the southern German city of Ingolstadt, representatives at Daimler and Volkswagen stated.
German magazine Der Spiegel reported in July that Volkswagen, its units Porsche and Audi, Daimler’s Mercedes and BMW may have used market committee meetings to fix the size of tanks for AdBlue, a liquid utilized to deal with nitrogen oxide in diesel emissions.
The EU Commission has refused to offer information on its investigation, saying only it had “issues that several German vehicle automakers may have breached EU antitrust rules restricting cartels and restrictive business practices.”
It stated the investigations were an early step in its investigations and did not indicate that any of the companies it had inspected had been condemned of anti-competitive behavior.
Media reports had informed that Volkswagen had also raised the concern of collusion with cartel authorities, although this has not been validated by the automaker.