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While regulators in the US have taken action against the VW Group and are now investigating the FCA Group over alleged emissions cheating, the national regulators in charge of enforcing emission rules in Europe continue to protect home carmakers and ignore the air pollution crisis affecting the urban populations. In the latest development – and against the backdrop of the Fiat investigations in the US – the Italian government claims its investigations do not show any wrongdoing by the company.
T&E has got hold of Italy’s Dieselgate emissions investigation. The report proves that the home carmaker got special treatment, e.g. Fiat’s cars were tested in carmakers’ own labs and some even “exempted” from undergoing more demanding tests. This shows what is going to happen if type approval rules are not tightened up and all enforcement continues to sit with national authorities. Europe needs to urgently revamp the way cars are approved for use to finally inject independence and transparency into the current system paralysed by regulatory capture. Strong EU authority to check both cars and national authorities should be the basis of any future system.