The death knell for so-called “clean diesel” auto technology in America may have just sounded.
GM is now the latest automaker to be accused of using illegal software in vehicles to trick emissions tests into thinking its diesel engines were cleaner than they really were.
Now the Detroit heavyweight is facing a class-action lawsuit brought on behalf of the owners of more than 705,000 heavy work trucks.
GM ready to defend itself against defeat device charges
The GM lawsuit, which was filed May 25, claims its Duramax diesel trucks belch two to five times the legally allowable amount of emissions under regular driving conditions.
GM, for its part, says the allegations against it are “baseless.”
“We will vigorously defend ourselves,” the company said in a statement. “The Duramax Diesel Chevrolet Silverado and GMC Sierra comply with all U.S. EPA and CARB emissions regulations.”
In addition to offering diesel in those Duramax pickup trucks, GM also features a diesel engine option in its Chevrolet Cruze compact and Chevy Colorado and GMC Canyon midsize pickup trucks.
Another day, another blow to clean diesel’s credibility
The lawsuit’s charge that GM’s “clean diesel” may be putting out up to five times the amount of emissions allowed under the Clean Air Act would make it potentially even dirtier than a Volkswagen, according to Automotive News.
For those who don’t recall, it was some two years ago when news of the infamous Volkswagen clean diesel debacle first broke.
In that shocking scandal, the German automaker admitted to using a software defeat device that tricked emissions testing equipment into thinking its diesel engines were off-gassing lower levels of pollutants than they actually were.
Volkswagen has so far paid more than $24.5 billion in fines and penalties for its willful wrongdoing. That’s includes having to buy back many of the cars it sold to North American owners on the false promise of truly clean diesel technology.
Further adding to clean diesel’s death spiral is what’s going on right now with Fiat Chrysler.
On May 23, the U.S. Justice Department accused Fiat Chrysler of violating the Clean Air Act by using cheat device software in its diesel vehicles to pass emissions tests.
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