Fine of 875 million to 4 car manufacturers

The European Commission has imposed an overall fine of 875 million euros to four car manufacturers for violating antitrust rules by sharing information on a device that allowed them to reduce harmful emissions of diesel vehicles. The sanction represents a clear contribution to achieving the objectives of the Green Deal, including the environmental sustainability.

Daimler drifts everything and pays nothing

Between 25 June 2009 and 1 October 2014, Daimler, BMW, Volkswagen, Porsche e Audi organized several meetings to discuss the design of a selective catalytic reduction (SCR) technology that reduces NOx emissions by injecting a liquid called AdBlue in the exhaust gases of diesel cars. This liquid is actually urea and allows nitric oxide to turn into water and nitrogen. The system therefore made it possible to comply with the minimum limits imposed by the Euro 5 and 6 regulations.

The European Commission says the technology is “very good”, but disputes the creation of the sign and therefore the lack of competition between the five car manufacturers. The manufacturers have in fact shared a lot of information on the SCR system, including the size of the tank containing the “blue liquid”. In practice, they agreed on the quantity of AdBlue necessary to comply with the regulations, when instead each of them could choose the quantity and therefore sell cars with lower NOx emissions.

The existence of this “secret agreement” was disclosed by Daimler who therefore did not receive any fine. BMW will have to pay around 373 million euros, while the fine imposed on the Volkswagen group (Volkswagen, Audi and Porsche) amounts to around 502 million euros.

The investigation is not related to the famous scandal Dieselgate, that is the use of the software that made it possible to make up and pass the homologation tests of Volkswagen cars. Other consumption recently announced that it has won the class action against the German manufacturer, obtaining a refund of approx 200 million euros to be shared among over 63,000 consumers.

Categories:   Digital Economy