CHARLESTON, WV (WOWK) — West Virginia Attorney General Patrick Morrisey says he has finalized a $550,000 settlement with German engineering corporation Robert Bosch, closing out more than $3.2 million in settlements related to the 2015 Volkswagen emissions cheating scandal.
The attorney general had alleged Bosch helped skirt West Virginia’s consumer protection laws as Volkswagen, Porsche and Audi used Bosch’s technology to cheat government emissions tests.
The alleged scheme led to false advertising as Morrisey says researchers at West Virginia University discovered the carmakers’ self-described “clean diesel” engines actually emitted up to 40 times the legal limit of nitrogen oxide.
“Our settlement closes the books on a massive cheating scandal,” Attorney General Morrisey said. “It also demonstrates how every company involved in a scheme to deceive consumers must be held accountable – even corporations whose actions help the primary wrongdoer.”
The automakers admitted to using Bosch-designed defeat devices to cheat emissions tests for 2.0- and 3.0-liter TDI diesel engines, according to Morrisey’s office. The devices enabled vehicles to detect test scenarios and reduce emissions accordingly.
The technology yielded high marks for fuel economy and environmental consciousness, while subsequent research would prove a much different story. Morrisey says the automakers agreed to pay the state $2,654,200 in spring 2018.
Bosch, which denied any wrongdoing, paid the state $550,000 and implemented enhanced compliance policies and procedures related to its Powertrain Solutions Division, including a prohibition on the development or calibration of defeat devices, according to Morrisey’s office.
The Attorney General unilaterally sued Bosch and the automakers in August 2016 – an expansion of the office’s initial lawsuit against Volkswagen in October 2015.