Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

THE INTERVIEW

‘Mexico will not finance US wall,’ foreign minister says

Read more

ACROSS AFRICA

African nations need to prepare for potential return of thousands of jihadists

Read more

EYE ON AFRICA

DR Congo former child soldiers awarded $10 mn in damages in landmark ruling

Read more

MEDIAWATCH

Website roots out "Rotten Apples"

Read more

THE WORLD THIS WEEK

Putin's press conference, Alabama election, One Planet Summit, Brexit Phase II, Disney & Fox

Read more

#TECH 24

WorldRemit: Helping migrant workers send money back home

Read more

FOCUS

The challenges awaiting the new leader of South Africa's ANC

Read more

THE INTERVIEW

Bangladeshi PM calls violence in Myanmar 'unacceptable'

Read more

DOWN TO EARTH

Was 2017 the worst year for the environment?

Read more

France

French car maker Renault suspected of emissions fraud

© Loïc Venance, AFP | French car maker Renault's logo.

Text by NEWS WIRES

Latest update : 2017-03-15

France’s consumer fraud watchdog told prosecutors that Renault boss Carlos Ghosn should be held responsible for the carmaker’s suspected diesel emissions cheating, a judicial source said on Wednesday.

The comments were included in a dossier submitted last November by the finance ministry’s DGCCRF anti-fraud body, the source said. The agency announced at the time it had found “suspected breaches” of French law by Renault, and prosecutors opened a formal investigation two months later.

Renault shares fell 3.7 percent on Wednesday after more details of the watchdog’s allegations were published by daily Liberation.

The carmaker has consistently denied any wrongdoing and has not been charged with any offence. It was not immediately available to comment on Wednesday and Ghosn could not be reached for comment. The finance ministry declined to comment.

Following Volkswagen’s exposure in 2015 for U.S. diesel test-cheating, several European countries launched their own investigative test programmes.

They found on-road nitrogen oxide (NOx) emissions more than 10 times above regulatory limits - for some GM, Renault and Fiat Chrysler models - and widespread use of devices that reduce exhaust treatment in some conditions.

The French test programme, overseen by an investigating committee, has so far led to action against Renault and three others: PSA Group, Fiat Chrysler and VW.

In its Renault submission, the DGCCRF emphasized Ghosn’s managerial responsibility, the judicial source said, confirming other French media reports on Wednesday.

While Renault’s “entire chain of command” was responsible, the dossier said, the chief executive was directly accountable because “no delegation of powers had been established by Carlos Ghosn regarding the approval of engine control strategies”.

Carmakers including Renault have broadly invoked an EU legal loophole designed to allow so-called “defeat devices” only when they are necessary for safety or engine protection.

Renault and several of its peers told the French hearings that devices in their vehicles were legal under the EU exemption. But the panel concluded that the technical justifications “remained to be proven”.

Renault had explained the NOx-cutting exhaust gas recirculation (EGR) technology in its top-selling diesel engines had been found to cause serious turbo clogging problems.

Engineers responded by programming the EGR to shut down outside a narrow range of air intake temperatures, 17-35 degrees Celsius (63-95 degrees Fahrenheit). While passing regulatory tests carried out near room temperature over short periods, the protocol sends NOx emissions sky-high on the road.

(REUTERS)

Date created : 2017-03-15

  • USA

    Six former VW execs indicted as carmaker agrees to pay record fine over emissions scandal

    Read more

  • USA

    VW reaches $1bn compensation deal with US over emissions scandal

    Read more

  • FRANCE

    Renault recalls 15,000 vehicles amid scrutiny over emissions

    Read more

COMMENT(S)