Fiat Chrysler Automobiles will pay around $650 million in settlements to the U.S. government surrounding allegations it cheated on emissions tests for its diesel V-6 engine. The engine is found is 104,000 Jeep and Ram vehicles in the U.S.
According to an Associated Press report, FCA will fork over $311 million in fines to the federal and California governments for the actual alleged cheating. The deal also includes another $280 million earmarked for owners of impacted vehicles, suggesting each owner will get about $2,800. Another $72 million will settle pending lawsuits started by various states.
The federal lawsuit claims certain 2014-2016 Jeep and Ram products equipped with the company’s 3.0-liter EcoDiesel V-6 featured software that ran pollution controls during emissions testing, but shut off during certain conditions in the real-world. FCA has contended the software was not illegal.
AP claims the automakers will not admit to any wrongdoing in the settlement. However, FCA has cleared a fix for the EcoDiesel V-6 engine that satisfies regulators.
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) first notified FCA of their alleged violation of the Clean Air Act in January 2017. Since then, the two parties have been going back and forth regarding FCA’s conduct and the alleged illegality. The matter escalated enough over time that FCA took an $810 million charge in the third quarter of last year to deal with U.S. diesel emissions issues.
This will mark the second settlement between the U.S. Justice Department and a major automaker in recent years. Volkswagen Group was fined $2.8 billion in 2016 over their own diesel scandal that impacted 500,000 vehicles in the U.S.