VW Diesel Consent Decree

This page last updated June 28, 2016


On September 18, 2015 the California Air Resources Board (CARB) and U.S. EPA notified Volkswagen that the company is in violation of state and federal vehicle emissions rules. The violations involve the company's use of an illegal software "defeat device" on 2.0 liter diesel vehicles in model years 2009-2015 to turn off required emissions control equipment. ARB, U.S. EPA and other agencies are investigating to fully understand the capabilities of this software and the scope of the damage it has caused.

As a result of the notification, Volkswagen and Audi were required to develop a recall plan to be reviewed by CARB and US EPA to ensure that the proposed actions to fix the affected vehicles would restore them to meet clean air requirements.

On November 20, 2015 VW, covering both VW and Audi models, submitted a proposed 2.0 liter engine recall plan for CARB review.

On January 12, 2016 CARB formally rejected that recall plan and issued a Notice of Violation that included 13 separate violations.

Based on problems identified with the VW and Audi 2.0 liter diesel vehicles, CARB, in conjunction with its partners at EPA and Environment Canada, commenced testing of the VW, Audi, and Porsche 3.0 liter diesel vehicles.

On November 25, 2015 CARB informed VW, Audi and Porsche that they needed to correct a range of noncompliance issues, including an illegal defeat device, on 3.0 liter diesel engines model years 2009-2016.

On February 2, 2016 those companies submitted a recall plan for 3.0 liter engines for CARB review.

Next Steps

CARB, in conjunction with the U.S. EPA, will continue to evaluate VW, Audi, and Porsche’s technical proposals to determine if and in what way the affected vehicles can be fixed. We will also address the issue of mitigating the past and future harm to the environment as a result of excess NOx emissions. And, we will continue to assess and determine the penalties for the violations of California air quality regulations.

Links to related Volkswagen documents: