The Audi A3 has apparently released excessive toxic diesel emissions during lab tests run by the European Commission, thus raising suspicions of misconduct at the VW Group’s luxury division.
Lab tests run by the EU’s Joint Research Center in August showed the latest generation Euro-6 diesel Audi A3 emitting 163 mg of NOx per km, double the statutory 80 mg cap, as reported by Autonews.
Another lab-based test showed the A3 emitting 140 mg of NOx at an engine temperature of 10 degrees Celsius (50 Fahrenheit), though emissions were indeed below the 80 mg cap when the car was tested with a cold engine.
“The differences between cold start and hot start are hard to explain,” said Bas Eikhout, a lawmaker on the European Parliament’s inquiry committee into the VW scandal.
Still, Audi insisted that emissions of their A3 compact, which has topped their global sales rankings this year ahead of the A4 and A6 models, comply with the legal limits. Yet, the automaker stated it had no information about the JRC tests, including the engine type examined, declining to comment any further.
EU regulators however depend on the JRC’s work, while a Commission spokeswoman said that those results were still preliminary.
“If the test results raise some suspicion of wrongdoing, such as the installation of prohibited defeat devices, they will be shared with all relevant approval authorities.”
This marks the second time Audi has come under scrutiny recently, as last month some of their petrol-powered models were accused of having separate software that lowered carbon dioxide emissions.