Ram, Jeep 3.0L EcoDiesels Accused of Using Emissions Cheating Software

Stephen Elmer
by Stephen Elmer
Ram 1500 EcoDiesel coming off the line at Warren Truck Assembly Plant
Ram 1500 EcoDiesel coming off the line at Warren Truck Assembly Plant

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has sent a notice of violation to Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) advising the company that its 3.0-liter diesel equipped vehicles use illegal software that is meant to fool emissions tests, allowing them to spew an illegal amount of pollutants.

The EPA alleges that about 100,000 2014-2016 Jeep Grand Cherokee and Ram 1500 vehicles fit with the 3.0-liter EcoDiesel engines have at least eight separate pieces of software that were not disclosed to the agency, meant to change how the engine handles its emissions. The software kicks in under certain operating conditions, allowing the engine to output more than the legal limit of NOx.

Meetings have already taken place on the matter, but so far, FCA has not offered a suitable explanation on why this software was not disclosed to the EPA during the certification process. The EPA is asking Fiat Chrysler to prove why this software is not a defeat device which is intentionally hiding emissions output from testing.

In an official response, Fiat Chrysler says that it is “disappointed that the EPA has chosen to issue a notice of violation with respect to the emissions control technology employed in the company’s 2014-16 model year light duty 3.0-liter diesel engines.” The brand says it “believes that its emission control systems meet the applicable requirements.”

FCA says that is has already proposed a number of actions to address the EPA’s concerns, but so far those action have not been enough to please the regulatory agency. “FCA US looks forward to the opportunity to meet with the EPA’s enforcement division and representatives of the new administration to demonstrate that FCA US’s emissions control strategies are properly justified and thus are not ‘defeat devices’ under applicable regulations and to resolve this matter expeditiously.”

SEE ALSO: Fiat Chrysler, Cummins Now Dealing with Diesel Allegations

The 3.0-liter diesel engines in question are manufactured by VM Motori, an Italy-based diesel engine maker owned by Fiat. Its ownership history is a little muddled, having been under the control of the former DaimlerChrysler and, at least partially, General Motors at one time or another before Fiat bought the entire company in 2013.

This is only a notice of violation, so all 2016 FCA vehicles fit with EcoDiesels are still for sale. Since the news broke, FCA stock prices have fallen by 16 percent.

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  • Mebeingme Mebeingme on Jan 26, 2017

    What the EPA isn't telling you is DEF breaks down the molecules and washes the black smoke before it comes out of the diesel so you can't see it but the body absorbs molecules easier the smaller they are which in turn causes more heath issues to anyone that breathes it in. Unlike before without DEF the black smoke that comes out the body has a harder time absorbing it because the molecules are bigger. Not to mention running DEF on these new trucks causes worse mileage more maintenance and pricey parts to keep them running. The EPA is trying to save the world but causing more harm to humans and costing consumers more money. Just think trucks using DEF get on avg. 5 mpg less and a factory produces DEF put's it in plastic containers and ship it around the county please explain how burning more fuel and producing another fluid / adding trucking costs helps anyone but the oil industry EPA & Big Oil are thick as thieves

  • Alex Kozovski Alex Kozovski on Feb 10, 2017

    This won't be an issue once Trump gets ride of the EPA.