Audi promises simple fix for 3.0-liter V6 diesels

Audi develops fix for 3.0-liter TDI engines

Proposed solution for 85,000 Audi vehicles submitted to regulators

As VW Automotive Group gets ready to administer a surprisingly low-tech solution to over two million diesel VW, Audi, Skoda and SEAT models in Europe, Audi promises a fix for its U.S. and Canadian-market diesels that won’t even include the retrofit of hardware, Reuters reports.

Audi has announced that it has submitted a proposed fix to U.S. regulators that will address the issue that affects the 3.0-liter TDI engines offered in the A6, A7, A8, Q5 and Q7 models in the States, in addition to the VW Touareg and the Porsche Cayenne Diesel and the VW Touareg. The automakers expects the fix to come solely in the form of a software update.

The fix will address emissions control software which the EPA had earlier labeled as a “defeat device,” but one different in form and function from the VW EA 189 2.0-liter diesel engines. In Audi’s case, some 85,000 models that have been sold in the U.S. feature what has been termed a “temperature conditioning mode” that turns on the pollution control systems, restricting nitrogen oxide emissions to allowed levels. One of these Auxiliary Emissions Control Devices adjusts the temperature of catalytic converters, something that that U.S. legislation considered to be a defeat device in practice.

The automaker’s proposed software solution is expected to make the engines compliant without a loss in performance.

“Swift, straightforward and customer-friendly solutions are in discussion,” Audi CEO Rupert Stadler told a large group of workers at Audi’s Ingolstadt headquarters a few days ago. “Every day we are taking another step towards the solution.”

In terms of timing, Audi did not indicate when the recall in the U.S. was expected to start or when the stop-sale order on the affected vehicles would be lifted. Audi and VW brand specialists are currently in talks with regulatory authorities in the U.S. over proposed solutions to the two separate diesel engine issues, though recall procedures in Europe are expected to start earlier than in North America, beginning next month.