In a scandal that came with what feels like a never-ending aftermath, at least a few thousand vehicles affected by Volkswagen’s Dieselgate emissions cheating will have a fix approved by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. But don’t sigh in relief just yet—only a few select cars qualify for this one.
Amidst Volkswagen’s buybacks of nearly half a million vehicles in a scandal that also affected sister companies Audi and Porsche when news broke in September of 2015, Automotive News reports that the EPA approved a fix for 70,000 cars on Friday.
The fix is a two-step process, with an initial software change available now that will be followed by further software and hardware updates in about a year. Some changes that will come to the cars later include a diesel particulate filter, diesel oxidation catalyst and an NOx catalyst.
But as of now, Automotive News reports that the only cars to be fixed under this particular agreement with the EPA will be 2.0-liter diesels from the 2015 model year, with the diesel Volkswagen Beetle, Jetta, Golf, Golf SportWagen, Passat and the diesel Audi A3 included in the agreement. All other cars, for now, do not have an agreed-upon fix.
This isn’t the first time Volkswagen has had hope for a fix approved by U.S. regulators. There were reports back in November that the company reached an agreement with U.S. regulators on fixing 60,000 of its 3.0-liter Volkswagens, Audis and Porsches while buying back another 20,000, but details of the fix for those cars has yet to surface.
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According to Automotive News, the EPA said test data demonstrated that the fix for the 2.0-liter diesels listed above will “not affect vehicle fuel economy, reliability, or durability.” The bit about fuel economy is important, considering that the cars’ efficiency with Volkswagen’s TDI engine was something they were known for—before, of course, the news about the emissions cheating came out and everyone realized the cars just coughed out unhealthy levels of emissions in order to get that fuel economy.
U.S. Justice Department officials ordered Volkswagen in June to buy back the nearly half a million cars mentioned earlier in a $14.7 billion settlement, and Automotive News reports that Volkswagen is still waiting on approval for fixes of 400,000 more 2.0-liter vehicles.
For those of you who fall into the small category of vehicles with an approved fix, what do you plan to do with your dirty diesel?