Both Volkswagen and Fiat used the defeat devices, says the study; ‘real driving’ and ‘homologation’ modes were used to tweak the cars’ emissions

An academic study from two universities accuses parts supplier giant Bosch of creating the defeat device software that Volkswagen and Fiat subsequently used to cheat emissions tests. 

The study, entitled "How They Did It: An Analysis of Emission Defeat Devices in Modern Automobiles", was conducted by academics from Germany's Ruhr-Universität Bochum and the University of California, was part-supported by the European Research Council. The implications were published by Bloomberg

Two modes were found to be used to cheat emissions tests, ‘real driving’ and ‘homologation’, with the latter designed to recognise when the car was under test conditions, and the former to be used by the car’s intended customers.

Affected engines are fitted with Bosch’s EDC17 ECU, which the study says was programmed with the defeat software. 

“Notably, we find strong evidence that both defeat devices were created by Bosch and then enabled by Volkswagen and Fiat for their respective vehicles,” the report says, although only the Fiat 500X SUV is implicated. 

Similar allegations were made against Bosch last year, when a lawsuit filed by representatives of affected vehicles in the US accused the supply giant of being a “knowing and active participant” in the emissions manipulation. Bosch responded by saying that it is not responsible for how a manufacturer uses its components. 

A Bosch spokesman said: "As a matter of policy, and due to the sensitive legal nature of these matters, Bosch will not comment further concerning matters under investigation and in litigation."

Autocar is awaiting responses from Volkswagen and Fiat. 

Read more:

Volkswagen emissions scandal: one year on

When is manipulation software not a defeat device?

Nissan found guilty of using diesel emissions cheat device in South Korea

Volkswagen of America chief surprised by defeat device car fix uptake

Our Verdict

Fiat 500X

Decent styling, a well-judged interior and good practicality means Fiat's 500X is a worthy entrant on your compact crossover shortlist

Join the debate

Comments
9

12 June 2017
As before Bosche and Volkswagen will reply with excuses and make use of every legal loophole in the European corporate law and the German government will likely look the other way just as they have done so far. But things have moved forward albeit at snail pace. Now the finger of blame is pointed not only at VW but the sacred Porsche and Audi are under the spotlight too. One can't expect Mathias Muller or Rupert Stupert to possess the decency of stepping down from their respective roles just now!

12 June 2017
As far as I was aware nothing has been confirmed about Fiat, things have only been alleged.

12 June 2017
Time to bring Borch to its knees.

12 June 2017
The real question is....why did they have to in the first place?,were the ever harder lower emissions test getting to hard to comply with because they were to unrealistic for car makers?

Peter Cavellini.

12 June 2017
Some diesel, petrol and hybrid cars do pass emissions in realistic testing including all Toyota hybrids, Suzuki Ignis SHVS mild hybrid, BMW 118d, BMW 520d, Opel Zafira 2.0CDTI, Mercedes E220d, Golf 1.5 TSI ACT. [ADAC ecotests] Automakers know how to reduce emissions and can do it in cost-effective practical vehicles. Unfortunately they often continue to scoff at poorly enforced regulations. Petrol direct injection cars, including the new Ioniq and Niro hybrids emit excessive particles while even many new diesels exceed NOx limits.

12 June 2017
The day Bosche agreed to pay $328 million fine in the US they indirectly confessed their involvement in the Volkswagen scandal. Although their liars (lawyers) claimed that they were not guilty of involvement in the diesel cheat. All those involved in this mega buck worldwide scandal should be fined heavily as long as thats not done Germany will look stained to the rest of the business and financial world. For once I don't blame president Trump for not shaking Merkel's hand when during her US visit.

12 June 2017
"An academic study from two universities accuses parts supplier giant Bosch of creating the defeat device software that Volkswagen and Fiat subsequently used to cheat emissions tests" it's a pretty bizarre statement, given that it still has to be proven that Fiat used a defeat device in its production cars with the 1.3 diesel Multijet. Your love for FCA products is well renowned (when was their last ad on Autocar?), but that's maybe a tad too much.

12 June 2017
Chicken and the egg, though. If this story is true, did Bosch create the software at the request of Volkswagen or Fiat, or did Bosch go touting their new product to these companies? Something tells me that the former scenario is more likely.

12 June 2017
Bosch had already said they told VW not to use the cheat software. It was intended for test purposes only, not to be used in the field. VW is the one that put the software in their cars.

However, what we've yet to discover is how much pressure management were putting on to the engineers tasked with getting old engines to pass the new regulations. Ultimately someone decided the only way was to use the cheat software, and the question really is why they made that decision? Was a manager putting so much pressure on that they felt it was the only way to keep their job?

That's the investigation which would be the most revealing.

Add your comment

Log in or register to post comments

Find an Autocar car review

Driven this week