The Strategist

FCA and CNH Industrial offices searched in connection with Dieselgate

07/23/2020 - 08:48

At the request of the German prosecutor's office, searches were conducted in the offices of Fiat Chrysler and CNH Industrial in Germany, Italy and Switzerland in connection with an investigation into the illegal use of equipment to reduce emissions.

According to the Frankfurt prosecutor's office, engines installed in Fiat, Alfa Romeo, Jeep and Iveco cars (manufactured by CNH Industrial) have been found to contain "potentially illegal software to hide excess harmful emissions." According to German law, only natural persons, not companies, can be held liable. 

However, the prosecutor's office did not name employees of these companies, noting only that an investigation was being carried out against nine persons working for an "international car manufacturer", and the purpose of this investigation was to find out whether they were involved in the fact that cars with potentially illegal software.

FCA and CNH Industrial confirmed to Reuters the searches in a number of offices. Both companies said they fully cooperate with the investigation.

The dieselgate scandal erupted in September 2015, when US authorities accused Volkswagen of installing software on diesel engines that would lower the actual level of harmful emissions. Since then, Volkswagen has spent more than € 30 billion to settle claims and pay fines, and the investigation has expanded to other countries and other manufacturers. The next searches took place earlier this month in Germany in the offices of Volkswagen and Continental.