Germany’s transport ministry has discovered a new “defeat device” in a Fiat automobile during emissions tests, it stated on Friday, escalating a conflict with the Italian automaker.
The ministry refused to provide details, however stated it would submit the results to the European Commission, which has examined a previous emissions case involving Fiat.
Fiat rejected its vehicles were equipped with a prohibited emissions test cheating device.
Germany broadened vehicle pollution testing following Volkswagen’s confession in 2015 that it had utilized a defeat device to cheat U.S. emissions tests on diesel motor.
Der Spiegel noted that recent tests on Fiat’s 500X passenger car revealed an exhaust treatment system turned off filtering after 90 minutes, mentioning results from a test performed by Germany’s KBA automobile authority.
Der Spiegel stated this totaled up to a brand-new defeat device. In a previous test, a Fiat car was discovered to switch off its exhaust treatment system after 22 minutes, Der Spiegel noted. An emissions test cycle in the continent lasts 20 minutes.
A spokesperson for Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) stated: “We are not in a position to talk about the validity or precision of expected KBA internal files or on purported emissions tests that we have never seen.”
FCA included that the 500X complied with emissions policies “in all material respects to appropriate emissions requirements” including this has been validated by the Italian ministry of transportation, the vehicle’s licensing authority.
Europe’s efforts to punish car emissions have been made complex by a loophole in EU law that enables automakers to shut off emissions control systems under specific conditions – such as at temperature levels where they may harm the engine.