If a report from Bild am Sonntag is to be believed, the Volkswagen Group is about to be rocked by another emissions cheating scandal.
The German publication (via Reuters) on Sunday reported that the California Air Resources Board (CARB) discovered a transmission-linked defeat device in an Audi vehicle last summer.
The new defeat device is said to be a piece of software that causes the transmission to enter a low-performance mode designed to deliver low carbon dioxide emissions whenever the engine is started, in both diesel and gasoline cars.
The transmission only switches to a regular mode with higher performance and CO2 levels if the steering wheel is turned in any direction more than 15 degrees, such as in regular driving. It’s only on a laboratory testbed where a car drives with zero inputs to the steering.
Bild am Sonntag claims Audi stopped using the device in May and suspended several engineers in connection with the matter.
The VW Group only in October reached an agreed-upon settlement for its 2.0-liter diesel engines fitted with the defeat device that was first made public in September 2015. However, the automaker is yet to reach an agreement for its 3.0-liter engines with the defeat device.
Furthermore, the VW Group is also facing investigations in the financial sector over disclosure obligations to shareholders regarding information linked to the original defeat device. The automaker on Sunday announced that a probe launched in June by German prosecutors against former CEO Martin Winterkorn and VW brand head Herbert Diess now includes Hans Dieter Pötsch, Chairman of the Supervisory Board.
Stay tuned for an update.