German newspaper Bild am Sonntag has alleged that it has uncovered documents that purport to show that investigators in the US have found “several software functions that helped Daimler cars pass emissions tests”.
According to the paper, Daimler has been using software that is very similar to that used by Volkswagen in the now infamous 2015 case in which VW ended up with massive fines, and loss of credibility and respect. The company is still involved in fighting several lawsuits around the globe for its own emission beating software fraud.
For its part, Daimler has, unsurprisingly, played down the serious allegations made by the German paper, and have said that the US authorities were well aware of the allegations, but haven’t taken any action.
Bild am Sonntag also reported that the use of emissions test-beating software was widely known in Daimler, claiming that engineers within the company had questioned both the legal and moral implications of using software designed to make engines react differently during emissions tests.
Journalists at Bild am Sonntag, have also alleged that US authorities have identified several software functions including one that effectively shuts off cleaning diesel emissions in its cars once the vehicle has travelled 26 kilometers.
The major allegation however is that Daimler vehicles have software that can differentiate between road and stationary testing conditions and lower or raise emissions afterwards.
No smoke without fire?
This new crop of allegations and accusations isn’t the first time that Daimler has been suspected of cheating on emission tests. Since 2016, Daimler has been defending itself in lawsuits from the exact same allegations.
Daimler has said that is fully co-operating with authorities in the US, but because of strict confidentiality clauses agreed with the Department of Justice it could not comment.