Further allegations of manipulation against Daimler

Author: Mario Schmidtgen
Date: 18.04.2019

60,000 SUVs shall be affected

The German car manufacturer Daimler is again under suspicion because of the manipulation of exhaust gas values for diesel cars. The values of a total of 60,000 Daimler SUVs were allegedly lowered using a computer program on the test bench, although the emissions remained unchanged. Now the Federal Motor Transport Authority (German KBA) is investigating Daimler and has initiated a formal hearing procedure on suspicion of another “impermissible cut-off device”.

This affects the Mercedes-Benz GLK 220 CDI model with emissions standard 5. A Daimler spokesman confirmed the examination of the model from 2012 to 2015. He did not comment on the number of vehicles affected – Daimler initially does not evaluate the process. As early as autumn 2018, the German newspaper “Bild am Sonntag” drew KBA’s attention to the suspicious software function in the engine OM 651. The results of further emission measurements on a GLK model had confirmed the suspicion.

The software function activates a special temperature control which keeps the coolant circuit artificially cooler and thus slows down the heating of the engine oil. As a result, the nitrogen oxide values on the test bench are falsely displayed below the legal limit of the new European test cycle (NEDC). In road operation, however, this function is suspended and the limit value is 180 milligrams per kilometer.

Last Sunday, a company spokesman confirmed that there was a hearing on the case and that Daimler was examining the facts described. Talks have been going on with the KBA for several months now. In April, the company intends to submit the statement requested in the proceedings. However, it was stressed that the company was cooperating “fully” with the KBA.

Furthermore, it was denied that Daimler would remove the programmed coolant function unnoticed during ongoing software updates. The updates are part of a previously announced package of measures for more than 3 million Mercedes-Benz vehicles. Daimler is fulfilling the approval process agreed with the Ministry of Transport and the KBA. “The assertion that we want to hide something with the voluntary service measure is incorrect,” commented the spokesman.