The Detroit Free Press reports that Fiat-Chrysler Automobiles CEO Sergio Marchionne says the company is in “intense discussions” with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) regarding the emissions control system on the company’s 3.0-liter diesel. The news comes about two weeks after the agency issued an official notice of violation to FCA regarding the diesel engine found in the 2014-16 Ram and Jeep Grand Cherokee.
Marchionne also suggested that FCA is working with the EPA on a fix for the engines that would simply be a re-flesh of the engine control unit (ECU) on the vehicles. Such a fix would essentially be a software update on the engines to rid the software of the code that the EPA says is in violation of the Clean Air Act.
The fix for the older models apparently hinges on the EPA and California Air Resources Board (CARB) certifying the 2017 model year Ram EcoDiesel and Jeep Grand Cherokee with the 3.0-liter diesel V-6. If the 2017 model software passes, then that software will be rolled out to the 2014-2016 model year vehicles, likely through a recall.
“I think discussions are proceeding well, and I think they are a confirmation of the, certainly the goodwill that’s been established with the regulatory agencies now for a number of years, and it’s something I expect that will continue,” Marchionne said.
Since Volkswagen’s extensive diesel engine scandal in 2015, the EPA has placed extra scrutiny on diesel engine emissions from all automakers. The FCA violation was uncovered during the more extensive testing in late 2016.
Despite both Volkswagen and FCA violating the Clean Air Act, the allegations and motive appear to be remarkably different between the two companies.