Volkswagen’s top-of-the-range auto maker Audi and Czech Skoda said on Monday that diesel cars from their brands are also fitted with the Volkswagen software that cheats emission tests.
Audi said 2.1 million cars are affected worldwide, while for Skoda, the number was 1.2 million.
Audi said in Germany alone, 577,000 vehicles were affected and in western Europe as a whole, the number was 1.42 million. In US, only 13,000 vehicles were affected. The models concerned were the popular A1, A3, A4, A6, Q3, Q5 and also the high-end TT, the spokesman said. Several of these models are also popular in India, but there was no clarity on whether units sold in India are affected by the latest revelation.
Volkswagen sparked global outrage last week when it admitted that 11 million of its diesel cars worldwide are equipped with so-called defeat devices that activate pollution controls during tests but turn them off when the car is on the road.
Skoda spokesman Jozef Balaz said the cars used “previously produced EA 189 motors,” adding that the vehicles were “completely safe in everyday use”.
“All new Skoda cars equipped with diesel motors on sale in the European Union fulfil the Euro 6 emissions norm,” he said.
Meanwhile, sources said Volkswagen had suspended VW brand development chief Heinz-Jakob Neusser; Audi’s R&D boss Ulrich Hackenberg, who also oversees technical development across the group; and Porsche’s Wolfgang Hatz, also head of group engine and transmissions development.
VW last week admitted 11 million of its diesel cars are equipped with so-called defeat devices, which covertly activate pollution controls during tests but turn them off when the car is on the road. Diesel engines use less fuel and emit less carbon, but emit higher levels of toxic nitrogen oxide.
Last Friday, VW named company insider Matthias Mueller, chief of its luxury sports car brand Porsche, its new CEO.