The Promising Advantages of Clean-diesel Cars May Just Have Been Ruined by Volkswagen

Since 2009, German manufacturer Volkswagen has been able to sell almost 500,000 of its diesel cars in the United States, one country where more than 90% of all vehicles on roads and highways run on gasoline.

Diesel is more popular in Europe because it provides more power, gives greater mileage than gasoline (30% more efficient than gasoline), and runs through a diesel engine, which offers more torque than a gasoline engine. However, a Volkswagen emissions fraud attorney will have probably learned by now that the main reason why diesel is so much welcome in Europe is because of its lower emission standards.

Despite the number of advantages provided by diesel, the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) does not like it because it is dirty; on the part of motorists, besides being dirty, diesel is also noisy and slow. While it is true that gasoline produces carbon dioxide (CO2), a global-warming gas, diesel is said to be dirtier because of what it actually emits: (i) particulate matter, which contains the soot and metal that gives smog its murky color; (ii) nitrogen oxide (NOx), which is a factor in the formation of ground level ozone, the main component of smog.

By equipping its diesel cars with a computer software device which allows its cars to detect signs that it is being tested, this device automatically alters a car’s performance, switching it to safety mode so that the amount of NOx emitted is greatly reduced until tests are over. On the road, everything switches back to normal and cars also go back to emitting pollutants that are 40 times higher than the limit set by the US Clean Air Act.

There is no doubt that Volkswagen intentionally cheated its way into the US market to be able to sell it cars which, it claimed, run on clean diesel. Due to this fraud it now faces fines that can amount to many billions of dollars, besides the recall of close to half a million of its vehicles in the US alone.

People who purchased a Volkswagen diesel car during the recent years may be legally allowed to file a lawsuit and claim compensation from the German manufacturer.