Renault: Latest car maker targeted in 'dieselgate'

Following Volkswagen and Fiat Chrysler, Renault is being investigated over possible 'cheating' in diesel emissions.

    Independent French experts found dangerously high levels of emissions from diesel engines of several car makers, including Renault [Christian Hartmann/REUTERS]
    Independent French experts found dangerously high levels of emissions from diesel engines of several car makers, including Renault [Christian Hartmann/REUTERS]

    French prosecutors are investigation Renault over suspected cheating on vehicle exhaust emissions, which caused the car maker’s shares to fall.  

    On Friday, prosecutors said they would look into possible cheating by Renault, after independent French experts found dangerously high levels of emissions from diesel engines of several car makers.

    Renault insisted its engines complied "with French and European regulations", adding that its vehicles did not have software allowing it to commit fraud in this area.

    Three judges have been looking into the Renault matter, a source told Reuters. Whether the prosecutor's inquiry is followed by a trial is for the judges to decide. They are focused on the public health implications of Renault's actions.

    The probe follows the Volkswagen diesel emissions scandal, that emerged in September 2015.

    READ MORE:Guilty VW to pay record $4.3bn over emissions scandal

    Just a day after US officials said VW would plead guilty to three criminal charges and pay a total of $4.3bn in fines to settle its scandal, the US Environmental Protection Agency charged that Fiat Chrysler had hidden software on diesel trucks that allowed them to spew out excess emissions.

    For its part, Fiat Chrysler denied the charges and pledged to work with President-elect Donald Trump's adminstration to resolve the issue "fairly".

    The EPA said undisclosed software on the 2014 to 2016 models of Grand Cherokees and Dodge Ram 1500 trucks sold in the United States allowed the vehicles to emit more nitrogen oxides than permitted.

    Inquiries into diesel emissions will affect car stocks in the near term, said Terry Torrison, managing director at Monaco-based McLaren Securities.

    “Every regulator seems to have a bee in their bonnet about diesel emissions. This story is not going to go away any time soon," Torrison said.

    SOURCE: News agencies


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