Daimler, the parent group of which Mercedes is a part, has reached an agreement with the United States government and the state of California where they agree to pay a penalty of 1.5 billion dollars for the manipulation of emissions from their diesel cars. A new case that puts the big manufacturers’ problems on the table to adapt to a transformation that has caught them with a changing pace.
The case does not go back too many years, and we were already in full deployment of electric mobility at the beginning of the growth of brands like Tesla. A case that has determined that Mercedes manipulated the emissions of its diesel cars sold in the United States between 2009 and 2016 and that now has cost it this harsh sanction.
The US Department of Justice, the Environmental Protection Agency, and the California attorney general’s office said that “Daimler violated environmental laws by using deactivation device software to circumvent emissions testing.”
According to American authorities, this has meant that in the seven years analyzed, Mercedes sold some 250,000 cars and vans with diesel engines that did not meet state and federal standards. In addition to the massive financial sanction, the civil repercussions that could cause the manufacturer’s directors’ indictment at that time and added sanctions that are estimated could reach 700 million dollars are pending.
Additionally, Mercedes will have to repair at least 85% of passenger cars sold in two years, and vans in three years, to meet the established emissions. Something that will entail a high cost due to the high number of units delivered must also have an extension of their guarantees of five years.
News that comes at a wrong time for a Mercedes that, despite having set sales records last year, is suffering economically with losses of 1,514,000 euros in the first six months of the year, while deliveries have been reduced in the first semester to 1,186,100 units or 25.6% less than last year at this point.