Duped by Volkswagen for seven years, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency isn’t wasting any time making sure no other automaker does the same. It’s putting automakers on notice that it’s beefing up emissions testing following VW’s admission that it installed software that cheated U.S. tests.
General Motors has two new diesel trucks due to hit the market soon, making it the first automaker to feel the backlash from the VW emissions scandal. Automotive News reports that the EPA told GM its new diesel Chevrolet Colorado and GMC Canyon pickups won’t be certified until they’re tested on the streets, as well as the lab. (The EPA is under scrutiny for not doing real-world testing in the first place.)
The bottom line is that the trucks may be delayed due to the additional testing. They were originally going to launch in the fourth quarter of this year.
“The EPA and CARB told us they are going to do on-road testing,” Scott Yackley, Chevrolet Trucks assistant chief engineer, said on the sidelines of a media event here for the diesel-powered Colorado.
According to Automotive News, the four-cylinder diesel engine GM slated for the Colorado and Canyon has been used in global markets without some of the emissions equipment required for U.S. sales. That includes the Selective Catalytic Reduction system that periodically sprays urea fluid into the exhaust system.
Yackley said GM engineers have conducted extensive lab and road tests and are confident that the trucks will pass the additional testing.
“Part of our development process is on-road and off-road [laboratory] testing,” he said.
VW, in violation of environmental regulations, installed software that switched on the emissions system when certain diesel-powered vehicles were being tested in the lab. On the road, a vehicle’s computer switched off the emissions system, causing as much as 40 times the legal limit of nitrogen oxide.