2016 Volkswagen Passat

U.S. Federal Judge Extends Deadline for Volkswagen

In late February, a U.S. gave Volkswagen an ultimatum: By March 24th, they would need to give a status update as to a fix for the illegal diesel vehicles. That date has since passed. What happened?

Reuters reports that U.S. District Judge Charles Breyer in San Francisco has moved Volkswagen's deadline to April 21st. At the hearing, Volkswagen and the EPA explained that progress had been made in negotiations, but there are still a number of issues to be ironed out.

What kind of issues are holding up the negotiations?

A key issue whether or not the EPA would be willing to accept a fix that doesn't fully fix all of the affected diesel vehicles. Earlier this month, chief of the California Air Resources Board enforcement division Todd Sax told a hearing that some Volkswagen vehicles might not be fully fixed.

"Our goal has been to fix the vehicles and return them to their certified configuration as expeditiously as possible. Unfortunately, this may not be possible," said Sax.

Sax went on to say there isn't a fix that could comply with either emission standards or onboard diagnostic requirements.

This deals with the older Volkswagen diesel models equipped with lean NOx traps (LNTs) to clean up emissions. To make these models legal, Volkswagen would need to make considerable changes which will cost a lot of money.

The other item being discussed is the possibility of two funds being funded by Volkswagen. As we reported earlier this month, one fund would be overseen by the EPA to promote clean transportation in the U.S and the other would be administered by the state of California to promote zero-emission vehicles.

What happens if Volkswagen misses this deadline?

Breyer would consider holding a trial on this summer.

Pic Credit: Volkswagen of America

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