VWs “made-in-Portugal” without fraudulent emissions software

As German car giant VW is plunged into a hugely embarrassing fraud scandal, economy minister Pires de Lima has been quick to point out that the default software that lies about emissions cannot be found in any of the models produced in Portugal.

The Autoeuropa car plant in Palmela produces a number of VW cars and people carriers, but none are those affected by the fraudulent “kit” which affects around 11 million diesel models worldwide.

Talking after today’s Council of Ministers, Pires de Lima agreed the dimension of the VW fraud “could hardly be anticipated nor imagined”.

The government is working now with the IMT (institute of mobility and transports) to “effect the necessary controls” to see if there is any implication for Portugal, he added.

According to news stories, the VW’s affected by the “emissions scandal” are Golfs, Jettas and Passats.

Also equipped with the default kits are models of Audi, Skoda, Seat and Porsche, with suspicions rife that other manufacturers could be involved.

As one analyst told the Financial Times, the scandal “could become the car industry’s Libor moment” (the scandal in which banks were found to have rigged the London Interbank Offered Rate), with billions of euros already wiped off the car sector in Europe and no clear way forwards in sight.

Talking to the Daily Mail, an automotive expert at consultants Vendigital has said the impact on Europe could see “a large tranche of the market switching to petrol engine cars virtually overnight”.

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