The Dieselgate issue just won’t go to rest. Earlier this week, German public prosecutors raided Volkswagen’s headquarters in Wolfsburg again to confiscate documents, this time pertaining to the EA 288 diesel engine, Reuters reports.
The raid on Tuesday is the latest episode in the automaker’s long-running diesel emissions scandal saga, which began in 2015 when it admitted to using trick software a.k.a. defeat devices to cheat US emissions tests.
Following the raid, Volkswagen said it was fully cooperating with the authorities, but viewed the investigation as unfounded, saying it had disclosed the issue at the heart of the new investigation – which is targeting individual employees – to the relevant authorities, the report added.
Former VW Group CEO Martin Winterkorn (left) and former Audi CEO Rupert Stadler.
The company said that in simulations, vehicles equipped with the EA 288 engine did not indicate a failure of the diesel filter, while still complying with emissions limits. The company added that the engine did not have an illegal defeat device.
The ensuing fallout has so far cost the company about 30 billion euros ($33 billion) in fines, numerous refits to impacted vehicles and provisions, as well as a global backlash against diesel vehicles.
The scandal has already claimed former Audi CEO Rupert Stadler, who along with three others were charged with fraud, false certification and criminal advertising practices. In April this year, German prosecutors charged ex-CEO Martin Winterkorn and four others with fraud over their role in the manipulation of emissions testing, and in September, prosecutors indicted current VW Group CEO Herbert Diess for holding back crucial information over the issue.