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Volkswagen, the world’s largest automaker, has now admitted to installing software which appears to have been designed to cheat federal emissions tests in 11 million vehicles.  The affected vehicles were marketed as “clean diesel” automobiles, and consumers who purchased the vehicles were promised both a “green driving” experience and great fuel economy.

In light of Volkswagen’s recent admission, it appears the company’s promises about the “clean diesel” vehicles may have been flat out lies.  Even worse, some industry insiders and experts believe the company will not be able to fix the emissions problem without impairing the vehicles’ performance.  Stuck between a rock and a hard place, consumers from around the country have begun filing class action lawsuits, alleging that they were defrauded into purchasing the “clean diesel” vehicles.    In addition, the company is also facing criminal investigations from the United States Department of Justice and at least one State Attorney General.

The software at the center of this evolving controversy has been dubbed a “defeat device.”  The “defeat device” software is allegedly able to determine when a federal emissions test is being conducted by sensing the manner in which the vehicle is being steered, the length of time the engine is being run, and the atmospheric pressure.  When these conditions align with those present during a federal emissions test, the software apparently forces the engine to operate within the maximum anti-pollution standards.  The engine allegedly operates in a far different manner during normal driving conditions.

So far, the company has admitted to installing the controversial software in the following vehicles:

Year Make Model
2009-2015 Volkswagen Jetta
2009-2014 Volkswagen Jetta Sportswagen TDI
2012-2015 Volkswagen Beetle
2012-2015 Volkswagen Beetle Convertible
2010-2015 Audi A3
2010-2015 Volkswagen Golf
2015 Volkswagen GolfSportWagen TDI
2012-2015 Volkswagen Passat

But stay tuned—the list may expand in the days, weeks, and months to come.  In fact, the Environmental Protection Agency announced that it is now investigating whether another model of engine installed in additional Volkswagen and Audi vehicles was programmed with the same or similar software.

The Newsome Melton law firm is currently handling claims on behalf of consumers who purchased “clean diesel” Volkswagen vehicles.  If you have a legal question about the Volkswagen “clean diesel” litigation, or wish to join the case and seek compensation, contact Newsome Melton today.