Bosch to pay $131 million to settle USA diesel emissions claims

News Fiat Chrysler to pay around $650M in emissions cheating case By MICHAEL BALSAMO and

Fiat Chrysler announced Thursday that it has reached final settlements with both USA regulators and private class-action lawsuits regarding allegations of excessive diesel vehicle emissions.

Bosch and its US unit must pay $98.7 million to 47 states, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico and Guam, and $27.5 million to 104,000 Fiat Chrysler diesel owners.

Federal officials allege that the 104,000 Jeep Grand Cherokees and Ram pickups, made between 2014 and 2016, were equipped with diesel engines programmed to run pollution controls during lab tests that would turn off under certain conditions on the road. FCA also will pay another $400 million in total to the EPA, the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ), CARB, all 50 states, and the U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP).

"Fiat Chrysler broke those laws and this case demonstrates that steep penalties await corporations that engage in such egregious violations", Principal Deputy Associate Attorney General Jesse Panuccio told a news conference.

While it may not have carried the cachet of Dieselgate, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles was mired in its own diesel scandal, and a settlement has finally been reached in its court cases. Fiat Chrysler has two years to fix 85 percent of the vehicles being recalled, and it will face more penalties if it fails to do so.

The settlement is the second between the US government and an automaker over allegations of cheating on diesel emissions.

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In 2016, Volkswagen pleaded guilty to criminal charges and agreed to pay a $2.8 billion penalty to settle government lawsuits. The company will also need to pay about $280 million to compensate owners.

Volkswagen AG in January 2017 pleaded guilty to criminal charges and agreed to pay some $4.3 billion in US penalties for its scheme to deliberately rig hundreds of thousands of USA diesel vehicles to cheat on emissions tests. About 500,000 VW vehicles were involved in the USA cheating scandal.

The Justice Department said the settlement does not resolve an ongoing criminal investigation into Fiat Chrysler's conduct.

Representatives for Fiat Chrysler and the Justice Department declined to comment.

"Today's settlement sends a clear and strong signal to manufacturers and consumers that the Trump administration will vigorously enforce the nation's laws created to protect the environment and public health", said Acting EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler.

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