Jaguar Land Rover, Lamborghini, Ford, Bentley, the PSA Group and Renault have also denied manipulating the tests through the use of defeat devices or extra software.
Along with a VW Passat and Jetta, a US-specification 3.0-litre BMW X5 was one of three diesel-powered vehicles involved in the initial research project into nitrogen oxides emissions conducted by West Virginia University (WVU), which then relayed its findings to the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).
During the tests in 2014, the X5 did not record any emissions readings to concern WVU’s researchers.
A BMW UK spokesman told Autocar: “Regarding BMW’s position, we do not use any software that can influence emissions in the test cycle.
“The International Council on Clean Transportation [ICCT] study which resulted in the EPA investigation showed that the tested BMW vehicle complied with the limits set, including in real-world driving situations. Given the positive results of the BMW vehicle emission test, neither EPA nor CARB [California Air Resources Board] have approached BMW in connection with this matter.”
The spokesman explained that BMW UK’s diesel engines achieved compliance with the latest EU6 emissions standards either by use of a urea injection system – as fitted to the X5 used in the original WVU test – or via engine technology.
“With regard to urea additives, there is a small number of vehicles that we now offer with this technology, namely: 520d GT, 730d and 740d and X5/X6 diesel variants.
“All other BMW diesel engines in the UK achieve the EU6 requirements through measures inside the engine, exhaust gas recirculation and NSC [NOx Storage Catalyst] technology.
“The weight of the vehicle also has a bearing on this, which is why BMW’s lightweighting technologies also have an important part to play,” he added.
A Ford spokesman said: “Our vehicles and engines – including our diesel engines – meet all applicable emissions standards, and they are designed to perform consistently both in the lab and on the road. We do not have any so-called “defeat devices” in our vehicles.
“We fully support efforts to ensure that emission standards closely match the real-world results that customers experience under normal conditions.
“We are committed to offering consumers high fuel efficiency and low emissions through what we call the “power of choice.” We offer customers a variety of choices ranging from our EcoBoost-powered gasoline vehicles and advanced technology diesels to hybrids, plug-in hybrids and full electric vehicles.”
Lamborghini, which is part of the Volkswagen Group, has also stated that it complies with the law, with a spokesman saying: “New Lamborghini models comply with the legal requirements and environmental standards in the markets in which they are sold. Lamborghini, on its own, is responsible for making sure, together with the respective national authorities, that these requirements and standards are met regarding emissions controls.”
Renault has also welcomed more tightening of the testing procedure and says it has not used defeat devices in the past. A spokesman said: “We invite all those legislations and framework in markets we operate in, we don’t have defeat devices in any of our cars and we welcome the improvements that are proposed in Europe for the NEDC side of it.”
Mercedes-Benz denied the practice, too. “Mercedes-Benz does not use defeat devices which illegitimately limit the effectiveness of the exhaust after treatment system,” said a spokesman for the company. “This applies to every Mercedes-Benz diesel and petrol engine worldwide.”
The PSA group, Peugeot, Citroen and DS, issued a combined statement calling for stricter emissions tests, and also denied that it used any defeat devices.
“PSA’s Research and Development Department reaffirms that PSA complies with the approval procedures in effect in all countries where it operates, and that engine settings, assuming the same conditions of use, are identical whether for approval procedures or in real life.”
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