back to article Volkswagen enlarges emissions scandal probe: 'Millions' more cars may have cheated

Volkswagen has warned that the figure of 11 million cars that cheated in air-pollution tests may be larger than first thought. The automaker is under fire for using diesel engines that deliberately lowered their output of nitrogen oxides during lab testing to pass strict emissions standards. In real-world use, the cars pumped …

  1. Keef

    > or <

    "Volkswagen has warned that the figure of 11 million cars that cheated in air-pollution tests may be larger than first thought."

    In the context of the story shouldn't that be:

    Volkswagen has warned that the figure of 11 million cars that cheated in air-pollution tests may be *smaller* than first thought.

    Okay, the 'warned' word might not be right in my version, perhaps 'said' would be better.

    But you get the gist...

    1. Shades
      Thumb Up

      Re: > or <

      Glad I'm not the only one to have spotted that.

    2. Turtle

      @Keef Re: > or <

      "Volkswagen has warned that the figure of 11 million cars that cheated in air-pollution tests may be larger than first thought."

      I also giggled when I read that.

      The intention was probably to write something along the lines of "Volkswagen has warned that the figure of cars that cheated in air-pollution tests may be larger than the 11 million first thought."

      And we only needed to add one word, and move two. So, not exact, but very, very close.

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: > or <

      A bunch of EU/university researchers found, published in 2011

      "On-road carbon dioxide emissions surpass laboratory emission levels by 21 ± 9%, suggesting that the current laboratory emissions testing fails to accurately capture the on-road emissions of light-duty vehicles. Our findings provide the empirical foundation for the European Commission to establish a complementary emissions test procedure for light-duty vehicles.”

      This study was on ALL manufacturers, not just VW

      The Barroso-era Commissioner responsible, Janez Potočnik, said this, also in March 2011

      "I said I also wanted to talk about urban air quality. The reasons for poor air quality in our cities are well known. There are more of them, than I could cover in one speech. The short version is that the main culprits are industry, transport, energy production, agriculture and households. Particulate Matter, Nitrogen dioxide and ozone are the main causes of concern with regard to health. (...) One problem worth mentioning is certainly also the discrepancy between what we call "real world emissions" and the emissions under the standards. In recent years, there is increasing evidence that diesel cars, vans, buses and lorries have higher emissions under real driving conditions than those prescribed by legislation. This applies to newer EUROV/5 vehicles as well as to EURO III and IV. These differences can be enormous – in some cases up to 500% of the limit value in the type approval.

      We anticipate that the same will be the case for EUROVI/6 should we not be able to resolve this gap between the objective in the legislation and the amount emitted in reality. The result would be that a big part of the predicted air quality improvements expected through its introduction would be simply wiped out. (…)

      The Commission has recognised these problems and has already taken some action. In the Communication on Clean and Energy Efficient Cars, from April 2010, my colleague Antonio Tajani proposed how we could rectify this situation. This included the development of a new, global, and more realistic test cycle, the introduction of additional off-cycle tests, so-called portable emission measurement systems, and the introduction of anti-tampering provisions. For heavy-duty vehicles, these are now part of the type-approval legislation for EUROVI. For cars, I am working closely with Vice-President Tajani to ensure that the necessary technical developments are completed by 2013.”

      allegedly

      1. annodomini2

        Re: > or <

        "...and the introduction of anti-tampering provisions..."

        This is the key part of that statement, i.e. the regulations don't currently rule VW's alternate map "against the rules".

        Legality is a different situation.

  2. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Rewrite the software

    Flush senior management, all of them.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Rewrite the software

      But it was done just by, some rogue software engineers, ya? Senior management did not know what their company was doing, ya? They sill get their golden handshake, ya?

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Rewrite the software

        "But it was done just by, some rogue software engineers, ya? "

        I thought the management of VW was German, not from hipsterland, ja?

      2. Solmyr ibn Wali Barad

        Re: Rewrite the software

        Jawohl, Herr Oberhurenjägerführer!

  3. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    The 'two low level guys' who are to blame for all of this have a lot to answer for.

  4. andreas koch
    Thumb Up

    Time to get rich

    by buying VW shares, which will surely fall quite a bit.

    For about 6 to 9 months.

    What does Worstall think about it?

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Time to get rich

      Nope. Here is your example why:

      https://uk.finance.yahoo.com/echarts?s=BP.L#symbol=BP.L;range=5y

      Expand beyond 5 years and see where DeepWater Horizon was (it is a couple of months outside the 5y window). Did the share price recover after it? No. Not in 6 months, not in 9 months, not at all.

      {Worstall Mode}

      We are presently in a state of oversupply and zero-to-negative growth across the world economy. The sole reason Eu and USA is not deflation is dark magic by the central banks. If that dark magic is subtracted, we should be in a deflationary state. In a deflationary environment nearly all stocks related to manufacturing are overvalued because deflationary environment guarantees no short-mid term growth of manufacturing, so a disaster driven downward adjustment is a long term one, not a dip and pop.

      {/Worstall Mode}

      1. allthecoolshortnamesweretaken

        Re: Time to get rich

        Upvoted for 'Worstall Mode'. Mind if I'd borrow that from time to time?

        1. This post has been deleted by its author

        2. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Time to get rich

          Upvoted for 'Worstall Mode'. Mind if I'd borrow that from time to time?

          Just use "Blinkered Economist" instead. Same thing. ;)

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Time to get rich

        "dark magic by the central banks"

        This dark magic would presumably be like dark energy and dark matter and accounts for 96% of the share price of social media companies?

        1. Alistair Silver badge
          Windows

          Re: Time to get rich

          Sorry Arnaut:

          This dark magic would presumably be like dark energy and dark matter and accounts for 9699.99995% of the share price of social media companies?

          I have to fix that typo for you.....

          1. Trigonoceps occipitalis

            Re: Time to get rich

            I don't know but I'll tell you after I have asked the Arch Chancellor.

          2. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: Time to get rich

            "I have to fix that typo for you."

            Even Enron had some share value - all those expensive office chairs were worth something. Social media companies probably have an awful lot of servers and Macs.

            Let's say 5 nines rather than 6?

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Time to get rich

      VW shares are a punt at this point.

      It's not really the cost of the scandal that's at issue. That has a one-time impact on the share price which, however many $Bn, is easy for investors to plan for in valuing the stock.

      The bigger issue for VW here is the question of how far off their fuel efficiency numbers really were and how, if at all, they can fix that. If they can't then their share price is likely to go down rather than up in the same way that Tesco has struggled to recover not from the fact of the scandal itself but from the difficulty in doing business without recourse to the tactics that got them in trouble.

      Shares often overcorrect and then rebound when scandals turn out to be easy to fix. When it transpires that the company is uncompetitive without cheating the scandal can precipitate a much deeper long-term decline.

      1. chivo243 Silver badge

        Re: Not the Time to get rich

        I got two tips for ya:

        Buy low, sell high, and don't take any wooden nickels...

        Wait until the stock prices have fallen, really fallen before you buy. I would say wait until 2016, late 2016... I have a feeling we're only seeing the tip of the iceberg here.

        1. Solmyr ibn Wali Barad

          Re: Not the Time to get rich

          "Buy low, sell high, and don't take any wooden nickels..."

          Careful now. That's probably covered by a business process patent.

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Time to get rich

      This isn't a flash in the pan scandal where it is all over now. The problem VW face is that potentially this could hurt them to the point of bankruptcy.

      Although a very rich manufacturer there are a number of issues. FIrstly there is the cost of recalls worldwide, then there is the cost of fines from various Governments which could be many billions, then there is the cost of lawsuits from individuals and companies and finally and demand for compensation.

      After all this you have the general negativity towards the brand that can affect their long term recovery.

      I'm in no doubt the brand(s) will survive but whether there is a pre-pak involved which junks all your shares is more of an unknown.

  5. J J Carter Silver badge
    Holmes

    Over-reaction?

    I just hope Germany doesn't do something silly like annex the Sudetenlands.

    1. werdsmith Silver badge

      Re: Over-reaction?

      They don't need to do that when they already own the entire EU.

  6. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    NHS funding

    As we've all inhaled diesel fumes from their cheating cars, can't the government sue them & so provide the NHS with the funds it needs?

    1. BenBell

      Re: NHS funding

      Possibly - but they'd have to prove that the fumes making us all poorl;y came from VW's and Audi's and didn't come from all the other vehicles on the road (including the red Toyota Yaris that blows smoke down half my street each morning).

      I've heard a lot of talk on the net about people trying to Lawyer up to get back Diesel money. If it's true that the cars (outside of tests) only get 40 instead of 50 to the gallon (as an example), people want the 10mpg difference with interest in cash for however many thousand miles they've driven.

      Kind of understandable - but its PPI all over again in my opinion.

      1. CaptainHook

        Re: NHS funding

        If it's true that the cars (outside of tests) only get 40 instead of 50 to the gallon (as an example), people want the 10mpg difference with interest in cash for however many thousand miles they've driven.

        *****

        No, the vehicles will have been doing 50mpg (or what ever the figure is) in real life conditions for the lifetime of the vehicle up to the point where the fix is applied to the engine management system so there are no claims from a consumer on that score.

        The issue is that in order to achieve that stated mpg figure they had to emit far more NOx compounds than they are allowed to, so the government has a legitimate grip for the past performance of the vehicles.

        The fix to make the vehicles hit the corrent NOx emission requirements is probably going to reduce the mpg figure and the performance of the car, so after the fix is applied the consumers have a pretty legitimate grip that the vehicle isn't performing as advertised and would demand compensation for future increased fuel bills and potentially increased rate of deprecation (whose going to want to pay the same price for a used VW now as they did last quarter?)

        It's a pretty nasty little catch-22 for VW, the government are going to come after them for emission in the past. For the future they either do nothing and incur the wrath of the government or do something and incur the wrath of their customers. There's no nice way out of this for them.

        1. Roland6 Silver badge

          Re: NHS funding

          "It's a pretty nasty little catch-22 for VW, the government are going to come after them for emission in the past. For the future they either do nothing and incur the wrath of the government or do something and incur the wrath of their customers."

          Well given how it seems that VW doesn't account for all of the smoke from the smoking <del>gun</del> exhaust, it would not surprise me if behind the scenes much effort is being put into expose other manufacturers. Once you have an (EU) industry wide problem, 'punishing' individual manufacturers no longer makes sense, because you are only shooting yourself in the foot - because you are in danger of destroying both an export earning industry and a rather large sector of employment. So I expect that the EU will ultimately come to an agreement whereby limited amounts of money are actually paid out to governments as payments to cover long-term health care costs. But most will be spent on getting new vehicles on the road powered by a new generation of engines and emissions reduction systems.

  7. John G Imrie Silver badge
    Pirate

    American car companies are lobbying for the feds to issue a very large fine against Volkswagen,

    Which will come back to bite them when the EU report discovers that US built cars are worse

    1. Frenchie Lad

      Re: American car companies are lobbying for the feds to issue a very large fine against Volkswagen,

      Will be interesting to see the diesel versions of Jeeps assessed for their emissions? At best the EU market for Yank cars is niche so most of the engines are sourced from European partners or ex-partners so in the case of Jeep they will simply be assessing an older generation of a Merc engine.

      I think the way to go is to drive Flexifuel (E85) - no hassles, can be cheaper and if no E85 near you then you always have a fall back to 95 petrol. Only drawback that I can see is the lack of range as Jeep for instance doesn't compensate by giving a Flexifuel car a bigger tank making the Grand Cherokee a 4 seater super bike in terms of autonomy.

    2. werdsmith Silver badge

      Re: American car companies are lobbying for the feds to issue a very large fine against Volkswagen,

      Which will come back to bite them when the EU report discovers that US built cars are worse

      Do we in the EU actually buy many US built cars from US car companies?

      I can only think of...... Tesla. Chrysler are now Italian owned. I think there are a few Camaros and Corvettes, and Cadi CTS/STS but they are very niche market.

      1. Hellcat

        Re: American car companies are lobbying for the feds to issue a very large fine against Volkswagen,

        Not sure it matters where the cars are built - I assume they're built in whatever factory to the designs pushed out from the mothership. Then you're looking at a couple of small companies - Ford, GM...

        1. werdsmith Silver badge

          Re: American car companies are lobbying for the feds to issue a very large fine against Volkswagen,

          But Ford Europe and GM (Opel) are close to autonomous in Europe, doing the engineering, design product planning and manufacturing. Jumping on them just for business advantage would be cutting off the nose to spite the face.

          1. MrT

            Re: Opel

            GM's Opel/Vauxhall Insignia is a world car, sold in US and China as Buick Regal. The old Saturn brand was basically the same thing, with the Astra and Vectra. The crucial difference in the lineup is that in Europe most Insignias are sold with diesel engines, whereas in US they're all petrol/gasoline. They used to be very different in the engine bay, but many are now are based on the same turbo-4cyl units.

            IIRC GM looked at shifting the European operation out of the company during the last financial restructuring. If things get sticky for GM's light duty diesels then a divorce may again be on the cards. However, if the action stems from purely US-derived test data, this push would only come about if the Eurozone pursued all manufacturers and Opel were found guilty of VeeDubbing the emissions as well.

            1. werdsmith Silver badge

              Re: Opel

              Yes, Insignia is a GM world car, but it was engineered and developed in Russelsheim Germany, along with the Epsilon II platform on which a lot of GM cars are based including many US only ones and US built GM cars. Germany is GM's engineering powerhouse, so you hurt GM you hurt the EU.

  8. ntevanza

    Computery science

    I'd be interested in a view from a grown-up computer scientist. What I have read about engine management system development is so interesting that it helps explain how VW (and its competitors) could be unaware of what code is running on board its cars. Unfortunately we have to discount the interestingness to account for illiteracy and speculation, until we get a grown-up to look at it.

    To wit, we have been told that there are millions of lines of code running in an EMS, and that it is not coded by humans. It sounds prima facie like a machine learning approach. I'm not sure I believe it. First, that sounds too hard for Bosch or VW when IBM and MIT have only just managed it. Second, it would be harder to certify for safety than human readable code. Remember, this thing has its virtual foot on your accelerator (all VWs fly by wire) and brakes (all VWs have ESC).

    If it's not machine learning, then it sounds like an inefficient mess. I don't know which is worse.

    1. tony2heads
      Terminator

      Re: Computery science

      "millions of lines of code running in an EMS"

      Can that really be the case?

      If machine learning did this then I think it must be doing much more than working out fuel and air amounts....

      Perhaps it really wants to choke us.

    2. LucreLout Silver badge

      Re: Computery science

      What I have read about engine management system development is so interesting that it helps explain how VW (and its competitors) could be unaware of what code is running on board its cars........ To wit, we have been told that there are millions of lines of code running in an EMS...

      In part, that is true. They don't manufacture the ECU and so quite likely have no better knowledge of the code in the firmware than I have of the BIOS code in the PC upon which I write this.

      However, it isn't the code that has caused the problem, it is the constant values with which it was supplied. All the EMS does is take readings from things like the TPS (Throttle Position Sensor - how hard are you pushing the gas), the MAF (Mass Air Flow Sensor) etc and look them up on a graph. The pint at which they intersect is the value for how much fuel to put in the cylinders per ignition cycle, and when to fire the spark, to achieve the burn characteristics desired (power / emissions etc).

      All good so far, but where VW have a problem is that the EMS has more than one map. Instead of using the road map they used a different one for testing, on which they had set up different fuel and ignition values and so were achieving different outcomes - one which used less fuel, produced less power, and burned more cleanly.

      The fix they are applying is remapping the vehicle to use different values. And this is where things get interesting. They can either adjust the road mapping to use the test values, in which case your car will get a lot less power output, or they can use the road values on the test map (which seems unlikley as that wouldn't need a recall ebcause its already using those values). Potentially people have two claims they can make - one for additional fuel cost (10-20% of the fuel bill during their ownership), and one for loss of power output - all those 1.8T VAG engines just got caught in performance terms by, well, everyone else.

      Only, given the same ECUs are manufactured for many car producers, what are the odds that no other manufacturer is quietly preparing to be found with their pants down? The whole industry drank the same Kool-Aid, and for the same reasons. Does your non-VAG group car really do 70 MPG or is it really nearer 50? What do you suppose is the reason for that then? This issue will run and run all next year.

      1. Joel 1
        Headmaster

        @LucreLout

        "and when to fire the spark, to achieve the burn characteristics desired (power / emissions etc)."

        Umm - we're talking about diesels here... there is no spark...

        1. Steven Raith

          Re: @LucreLout

          That's true enough, but from a practical perspective he's not wrong - it's controlling the fuel, air and ignition to control power and emissions, it's just that in a diesel, ignition is achieved through compression rather than a spark.

          1. fnj

            Re: @LucreLout

            @Stephen Raith - the ignition profile is still under precise control. It depends on the injection profile. Nowadays you inject multiple spurts, all precisely timed, per cycle.

        2. LucreLout Silver badge

          Re: @LucreLout

          @Joel1

          Sorry about that Joel. You are obviously correct, and this is something I pointed out in a later post further down the stack discussing differences between petrol and diesel engines, having realised I should have been clearer here.

          The reason I brought up sparks/petrol engines is that I am 100% convinced that an identical gaming of the system happens with petrol engines, and am looking forward to the shennanigans next year when I am shown to be right.

          1. MrT

            Re: @LucreLout

            "I am 100% convinced that an identical gaming of the system happens with petrol engines"

            Well, the V8 petrol Audi S7 advertises that it will spend most of the time around town as a V4, only opening all 8 taps when needed. Anyone who has looked at the way the Euro emissions test is done can see that it's possible for the S7 to be set to do the entire thing on half an engine. The latest model RS6 dropped down a tax band, and apparently will deliver 29mpg. Just not in the hands of any Audi driver who bought one for the sub-4s 0-60 sprint.

            If a car recognises it's on a test rig (and they all do these days) and places different parameters on the engine as a result, it doesn't matter what fuel it runs. It's like having a stop/start system installed as a way of getting down a few tax bands, but allowing customers to permanently disable that IRL - the car immediately does a lower mpg as a result. The upshot of all this could be to make all cars run in the test configuration all of the time, no options, no remaps. Or, real-world testing - setup as well as routes.

            Set a target, people do what they can to meet/beat it - look how many cars race to get to 99g/km CO2 but no lower...

            1. Anonymous Coward
              Anonymous Coward

              Re: @LucreLout - @MrT

              The issue is whether the emissions test is intended to tell the average driver which car will give the lowest fuel bill and emissions if driven sensibly, or whether it is intended to control anti-social behaviour. Currently it is the former, with fuel pricing intended to discourage the latter. But Saudi fuel dumping is working against fuel pricing.

              It's hard to imagine that anybody buying an Audi S7 has the slightest interest in fuel costs, which are outweighed by depreciation.

              It would be interesting to have two emissions tests; one for "sensible" driving and another one in which the vehicle was repeatedly accelerated hard to 30, 40 or 70mph, kept there a few minutes, and then returned to tickover. This would represent the "antisocial" driving pattern and vehicles could be subjected to limits for these. It would boost the sales of Teslas, certainly.

              (The test I described is roughly the one that used to be used for life testing small Diesel engines and was called the "van driver cycle". To make it more fun, every so often the hot coolant was flushed out with cold to enable repeated cold starts. The cycle lasted 7 weeks; some models of engines, including the original GM 1.6 litre Diesel, stood up to it remarkably well, while others protested by throwing their con rods across the test room.)

              1. MrT

                Re: testing

                Absolutely agreed about more realistic testing. There's an extra line on car adverts these days, the jist of which is "test results are for comparison only, don't expect to see those results in real life...". Versions existed before, but the disclaimer realises that no one drives to the test profile. 0-100kph in 30 seconds was probably chosen so a 2CV could complete things.

                There are problems with short period tests, given the number of variables that could apply. The only way to gather realistic figures would involve a test fleet over a year or so. As that's logistically impractical (secrecy over launches, etc.) then a new range of 'best case/worst case' tests needs setting up. But, whatever test is created, gaming the system would still happen.

                The reality is everyone drives their cars somewhere between 'as if they stole it' and 'as if there's an uncracked egg on the throttle and it's not breaking on this trip'. It's just the Euro cycle is on the latter end, with the world's strictest Celeration tracker wired up to send 10kVA up the driver if triggered...

        3. Roland6 Silver badge

          Re: @LucreLout

          >Umm - we're talking about diesels here... there is no spark...

          But they do have glow plugs these days which are intended to have a similar effect on determining when the fuel burns.

          1. fnj

            Re: @LucreLout

            @Roland6 - glow plugs have zero effect on ignition timing. They are only there for starting and cold running, to add heat over and above the compression effect. Ignition timing is controlled by injection timing.

          2. Vic

            Re: @LucreLout

            But they do have glow plugs these days which are intended to have a similar effect on determining when the fuel burns.

            Nope. The glow plugs pre-heat the air in the cylinders to ensure ignition will happen even when the engine is cold. As it warms up, the glow plugs are switched off (this might happen before the engine even starts).

            Ignition is caused by diesel being injected into hot, compressed air. Old-style injectors merely ramped up the diesel pressure until it overcame a calibrated valve, at which point the valve opened and diesel is sprayed into the cylinder. This causes a relatively slow build-up of fuel:air ratio, with quite a bit of attendant knocking.

            Modern diesels tend to have a high-pressure rail of diesel, with electrically-operated valves controlling flow into the cylinder. This leads to better combustion timing and reduced knocking.

            Vic.

          3. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: @LucreLout - But they do have glow plugs these days

            The glow plugs are only used for starting and while the engine is warming up. I think you are confusing Diesels with semi-Diesels which have a hot region of the cylinder head to permit fuel burning at lower pressures than is needed by a true Diesel. And the glow plugs are there to initiate combustion, to to time it.

      2. Roland6 Silver badge

        Re: Computery science

        "Instead of using the road map they used a different one for testing, "

        Has this actually been confirmed, or given the special conditions that surround testing ie. the conditions would never be encountered under normal driving conditions, it is possible (and sensible) to integrate the test map into the other maps?

        Hence a reason why VW have discovered/realised that they are going to have to examine individual maps to determine if they contain the relevant settings...

  9. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Seriously, I do not understand why customers are taking legal action. They are suing because they would rather have had a lower performance car? The engines were fudged so that they pass emissions tests, I have seen nothing to suggest that it impacts on economy real drivers would get and I have seen nothing quantifying what impact it has on emissions. Was the fudge just required to meet the Californian regs? Would the engine meet other less stringent requirements without the fudge? Are emissions in fact fine in normal real world driving and the issue is only when cold, or on max power, or at certain revs. If anyone can point me to some facts on the issue, please do.

    1. Can't think of anything witty...
      FAIL

      What will be interesting is the corrective action...

      What i'm still not clear on is what VW are going to do to fix this. the way i see it, either they leave cars as they are and get a big fine from governments for polluting OR they fix the software so that cars run in the cleaner mode all the time.

      but surely, if they do that, then the performance will be reduced (or else that would be the engine mode by default). so then customers end up with cars that do not give the power that they were told they have and VW get sued by them for false advertising and no-one wants to buy a VW any more.

      either way they have a massive problem.

      if they then cannot return to Business as usual afterwards as their strategy was based on this approach, (See AC comment in Worstall Mode above) then it is even more of a problem....

      i didn't think that VW would collapse over this, but now it seems like a possibility...

      1. LucreLout Silver badge

        Re: What will be interesting is the corrective action...

        @Can't think of anything witty

        if they then cannot return to Business as usual afterwards as their strategy was based on this approach

        This will continue to be a problem for them. Engine power output and emissions are based on well known equations. For a given amount of air entering the cylinder, you put in quantity of fuel and ignite it at a specific time. The quantity of fuel and the timing of the spark do several things - you can fire slightly early and generate more power from the engine, but generate more emissions due to an incomplete burn; Or you could aim for a near complete burn, but generate lower power output in doing so. You cannot have both the low emissions and the higher power output.

        Since we're looking only at diesel at the moment, there is no spark, but there is still fuel injection timing. Tractors used to inject the diesel once per cycle, which is why they run rough. Modern diesels inject fuel many times during one ignition stroke with several aims - power generation, emissions levels, and smooth running. That last one uses additional fuel and achieves an incomplete burn, but stops the car shaking like a tractor.

        Reducing the fuel injected will reduce the power output of the engine. Unless, the only values they chop are the parts that smooth the ignition, in which case you'll keep the power output, reduce the emissions, and your occupants will think they're driving an 80s diesel tractor or bus.

        Either way, the current differentiation strategy is toast. This issue will roll over to other manufacturers, and then someone will think to look at the petrol engines too, which are dancing to the same tune.

        VW is, in my view, unlikely to rebound because they cannot deliver honestly that which they were cheating to attain. It will affect their large fleet sales because the higher tax bandings or reduced comfort/power will open up the competition.

        ETA: AdBlue, Urea, or as it's known in the trade, piss. Diesels also inject this into the combustion cycle to reduce various types of emissions. Piss injection takes up space in the combustion chamber, but doesn't burn as well as fuel, so injecting more piss means injecting less diesel at peak fueling, which means reduced power, or perversely perhaps using more fuel to ignite all the additional piss on the subsequent smaller injections once the piston has passed TDC and your just trying to burn off some of the gasses before the blow stroke.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: What will be interesting is the corrective action...

          "Unless, the only values they chop are the parts that smooth the ignition, in which case you'll keep the power output, reduce the emissions, and your occupants will think they're driving an 80s diesel tractor or bus."

          I don't think this is correct.

          If you used additional fuel for an incomplete burn, you would be producing carbon monoxide and carbon particulates.

          A perfect Diesel has its fuel injection timed and measured to give constant pressure. (As distinct from a spark ignition engine which in theory ignites at constant volume). The last part of the injection cycle is the part that is likely to burn incompletely, and indeed the object of a long injection is to achieve that constant pressure for as long as possible. But also, long injection allows a greater weight of fuel to be burned and so more power, epsecially at low revs.

          Shortening the fuel injection while achieving the same power will result in increased pressure, but also because more fuel is injected in unit time the risk of incomplete burn becomes higher.

          It isn't a matter of sounding like an 80s engine, it is that the engine is designed around parameters which (in the high power version) will be as close to working limits as possible. Shortening the injection cycle will either reduce power or affect bearing loading and emissions. I suspect that the results of the fix will simply be to reduce power (as we don't want more engine blowups down the line) but also worsen consumption because, in an effort to compensate, drivers will apply more right foot and this will result in less complete combustion. Tangled webs etc.

          1. LucreLout Silver badge

            Re: What will be interesting is the corrective action...

            @Arnaut the less

            If you used additional fuel for an incomplete burn, you would be producing carbon monoxide and carbon particulates.

            Yes, you would, which is why cars are fitted with a DPF, to reduce the particulates.

            It isn't a matter of sounding like an 80s engine

            I agree, it's a matter of not vibrating like one.

            http://bura.brunel.ac.uk/bitstream/2438/10022/4/Fulltext.pdf

            This gives rise to anything up to and including 5 pilot injections prior to the main event. Each of those pilot injections consume fuel and so lead to emissions. In bench tests its very easy to forego/reduce the pilot injections because you don't care about vibration. Instead you go for a long high pressure injection, which on its own will vibrate like Ann Summers.

            There's no option on the table that will allow vibration, power output, and fuel efficiency, to remain at current levels while reducing NO emissions. One or more of them have to give.

            1. Anonymous Coward
              Anonymous Coward

              Re: What will be interesting is the corrective action...

              "http://bura.brunel.ac.uk/bitstream/2438/10022/4/Fulltext.pdf"

              I do not see the relevance of that paper to whatever point you are trying to make. It is about vibration at idle - and it shows that cycle to cycle variations in amount of fuel injected/combustion pressure are more important than slight variations in engine revs at idle. It says nothing at all about length of injection period, because at idle that is going to be short anyway. Your "long high pressure injection" is totally irrelevant.

              Did you mean to cite a different paper, or one of the references?

              Carbon particulate filters are a major cause of customer dissatisfaction, which is why you don't want more carbon particles produced. This is what I meant about tangled webs - a change in operating parameters for a modern Diesel engine is likely to be a whole slew of unintended consequences.

              Anyway, the net conclusion is, don't buy VW shares. Honda or Toyota could be the major beneficiaries of this one.

              1. LucreLout Silver badge

                Re: What will be interesting is the corrective action...

                @Arnuat the less

                I do not see the relevance of that paper to whatever point you are trying to make.

                Para 1, sentance 2:

                Any change in the fuel injection pattern during the ignition delay period affects the quality and the timing of the combustion process, as well as the vibration levels of the engine structure.

                I agree that the S3 does suggest it mostly afflicts idle:

                Especially at low engine idle speeds (600–800 r/min), fuel economy and reduced emission requirements lead to increased combustion irregularity

                However, it is not exclusively at idle that this is felt, and with a frequency ranging from 1hz to 400hz, its going to be very noticable to the driver. As most time spent in most cars is around town or stop start traffic, your idle shake is a key concern.

                It says nothing at all about length of injection period, because at idle that is going to be short anyway. Your "long high pressure injection" is totally irrelevant.

                Only if you understand nothing about engines; I'd assumed perhaps incorrectly that you did. Otherwise you'd already know that increasing the duration and pressure of fuel injection will increase the emission of CO2 while reducing the emission of NOx and particulates. Typically this is done with several injections of fuel per ignition stroke - the pilot injections for smooth running, the primary injection which makes the power, and secondary injection(s) for clean burning. If you care not for the lumpiness of the engine, you can likely skip some or all of the pilot injections, there by reducing CO2 - you then fuel up the secondary injection to burn off the NOx. What you gain is a hell of a lot of vibration.

                In short, to meet (most of) the environmental criteria they claimed to have met, their cars will feel more agricultural and generate a bit less power; or the alternative is that they generate a lot less power but still feel relatively vibration free. Which is what I said earlier.

                Carbon particulate filters are a major cause of customer dissatisfaction, which is why you don't want more carbon particles produced.

                I agree, which is why so many have been removed after failure. They will get you through the EURO 6 test though.

                Anyway, the net conclusion is, don't buy VW shares. Honda or Toyota could be the major beneficiaries of this one.

                Agreed, in part. Though once the testers wake up to the concept of multiple mappings having also been applied to petrol cars to game CO2 and MPG figures, I expect the scrutiny to reach other marques.

        2. annodomini2

          Re: What will be interesting is the corrective action...

          @LucreLout

          AdBlue is added to the exhaust, not the combustion process.

          There are other things wrong with your statement, a Diesel engine works very differently to a Petrol/Gas engine.

          1. LucreLout Silver badge

            Re: What will be interesting is the corrective action...

            @annodomin2

            You're quite right, the piss goes in the exhaust.

            a Diesel engine works very differently to a Petrol/Gas engine.

            Well, yes, which is why I mentioned the lack of spark, due to ignition being compression induced, which is the main difference. Its still a 4 stroke engine burning dinosaurs and air. Suck, squeeze, bang, blow.

            For the ECU the main difference is the omission of an ignition timing map, and the addition of the pilot injections. Its still just a graph, in this case a graph which has been fiddled with to reduce emissions on one mapping, while reducing vibration and maximising power on the other map.

            There is no map that will keep the benefits of the road map (power, vibration, etc) while delivering the emission characteristics of the test map. Which is why the current strategy is dead - because VW can't quick fix their way back into a position that never existed.

            1. Anonymous Coward
              Anonymous Coward

              Re: What will be interesting is the corrective action...

              What most people do not know is that the VW Diesel engines will meet all emissions requirements simply by operating the emissions controls with higher duty cycles than they currently see. The software just needs to be updated to make almost all of the VW Diesels compliant. Test have shown a loss of about 3 mpg highway and a zero to sixty acceleration about .6 seconds slower. VW may add some engine hardware to eliminate the minor mpg/power losses.

              Much of what is reported by the media is inaccurate or misleading. Many in the media don't even understand the technical issues or solutions. I have no association with VW but I have discussed this matter in detail with the auto engineers who work in the Diesel emissions areas for car companies and they believe the solution is not very difficult to achieve. Forum conversations suggest that most VW owners like their Diesel and plan to keep it. The lawyers will be looking to cash in on any angle they can think of. The fines to VW will be in the billions and serve as a costly lesson of the consequences of rogue engineers and programmers undermining the entire company and hundreds of thousands of employees.

        3. Vic

          Re: What will be interesting is the corrective action...

          Piss injection takes up space in the combustion chamber

          Errr - ITYF it's injected into the exhaust stream, not into the combustion chamber...

          Vic.

    2. auburnman

      The capabilities of the cars were misrepresented at point of sale, possibly fraudulently so. they paid for a 'high' performance car that will now have to have its performance lowered through no fault of their own. As others have pointed out that's definite impacts on the fuel costs and resale value at least.

      I reckon VW are actually lucky they are only being sued, they could have been forced to recall all the cars and compensate owners for full purchase value.

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      > Seriously, I do not understand why customers are taking legal action. They are suing because they would rather have had a lower performance car? The engines were fudged so that they pass emissions tests...

      Exactly what I was wondering. It wasn't the customers that were cheated, just the Government. And bypassing troublesome government regulations should be loudly praised by any good citizen.

  10. Herby Silver badge

    Lawyers...

    Yes, here in the litigious USA, the lawyers have the "call me" adverts on TV about this (I've seen a few). "You may be entitled to...". These ambulance chasers are all over the place, and I suspect that those who latch up with the legal profession will probably not get much, but (of course) the shysters lawyers will get the lions their fair share.

    Life goes on. Where is my share. I had a VW in my childhood.

  11. Medical Cynic

    Bosch may be at the root of it. They provided the software for VW, and allegedly have a cheat code in their vacuum cleaners such that power consumption is increased when the bag fills up, to maintain suction, despite renergy tests requiring the low level that only actually works when the bag is empty.

    Bosch were also strong lobbyists for the EU test regime to be performed with an empty bag, going against the rea.-world usage.

    Dyson is livid - to the extent of taking them to court!

    1. Frenchie Lad

      Dyson's Daft

      Dyson should not waste money on lawyers. Simply adopt the same practices as Bosch and publish them for all to see. Known as competition!

      I do notice that the Dysons don't have very good ratings in the tests - perhaps that's the real reason why he's litigating.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Be careful about the rumors you claim as fact

      FYI -Bosch has no involvement in the VW scandal. They do NOT provide the software to VW. VW produces their own software in house. Bosch provides the hardware only. Bosch has made this clear in public statements on the VW scandal. No authorities have accused Bosch of any involvement in the VW Diesel emissions issues.

      In regards to vacuum cleaners, there is no cheat code by Bosch contrary to your assertion. What the Bosch vacuum cleaner does is increase the power as needed. The energy tests currently show typical power not that of a vacuum with a full bag or a restriction that can increase power consumption. These power consumption tests like auto mpg tests do not always provide sufficient data for consumers.

      In a petrol powered vehicle the mpg can vary as much as 30% just by how a person drives the vehicle. Authorities have tried to hone in the mpg tests to be more representative but it's impossible to account for a 30% variation and have any meaningful data. The goal is to find a realistic reference point to compare products but there is always a disclaimer that your results might and probably will vary. As an example I never had a problem equaling the EPA mpg ratings on various cars even though I tend to drive in a spirited manner. Other people get less than the EPA estimates and some get better than the EPA estimates.

      That is exactly how it's suppose to be and why consumers should educate themselves on what a test does and does not do and how to use the information provided. In the vacuum tests they might want to have a normal operation test and a max power consumption test for when the bag is full or the plumbing obstructed. The question is how many people continue to run a vacuum in this mode vs. normal operation. Is there really a need to have a max power consumption mode test? When it comes to test data, people will misuse it to their benefit whenever possible. Understanding what the data means is often lost on journalists and the general public. That's how people reach completely false conclusions often by design.

  12. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    I Don't Care

    Just like I didn't care when the story broke. My VW Golf estate diesel does between 55 and 65 mpg with over 190,000 miles on the clock and has been a very low defect vehicle (less than £500 of non service costs in all those miles, and nothing that ever stopped it going). Will I buy another VW when this one eventually dies? Damned right I will. Or maybe a Ford ('cos I've got one of those as well, and that's really good too).

    1. CaptainHook

      Re: I Don't Care

      My VW Golf estate diesel does between 55 and 65 mpg

      *****

      Assuming it's a model which is affected by the emissions cheating software, then when that ECU software is updated then you won't be getting 55-65 mpg any more. That's the whole point, to make vehicle meet the required NOx emissions standards it will mean VW is effectively going to have to make the cars run in the test cheating mode all the time reducing power and fuel efficency (or install Urea injector hardware to every vehicle affected)

    2. werdsmith Silver badge

      Re: I Don't Care

      What you are experiencing, is the general experience that we get nowadays with modern cars.

      Trying as hard as I do, I cannot get one to break regardless of who made it.

      It's not like the 80s when there were still choke-started carburetted cars with untreated mild steel panels. Instead we have the internet age where the few problems that there do happen are all concentrated and focussed into a loud place where we can all see them, making the problems appear more common than they actually are.

    3. Kubla Cant Silver badge

      Re: I Don't Care

      Will I buy another VW when this one eventually dies? Damned right I will.

      You're probably correct in your belief that the emissions cheating business won't of itself deter buyers. But there are other considerations.

      VW seems to have done this to save on the cost of the AdBlue system they would otherwise have needed to get rid of NOx in the exhaust. So expect future VWs to be more expensive.

      VW will likely spend the next decade paying massive fines and fighting court cases. The money this costs them will be money that competitors can spend on development. So your 2025 VW won't just be expensive, it will be old-fashioned.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: I Don't Care

        No VW did not "do this to reduce costs on AdBlue". AdBlue is not required to meet emissions standards. There are several means to meet emissions and in fact the VW Diesels will meet all requirements when the duty cycle of the appropriate emissions controls is increased slightly as testing has proved. Thus VW needs to update their software to increase the duty cycles which will meet all emissions standards worldwide. The increased duty cycles however result in a small reduction in mpg of approximately 3 mpg highway and an increased six tenths of a second in zero to sixty mph acceleration time. Thus the rogue VW engineers and programmers reduced the duty cycles to increase mpg and power, which is easily corrected with the software update. VW may chose to use a minor hardware update to restore the mpg and power, which should make everyone happy.

        The above information comes directly from those who have tested the VW Diesel engines and those who monitor and program software for auto engine emissions. Unfortunately most of the media has failed to properly inform the public of the correct technical information regarding the VW Diesel emissions. BTW I have no association with VW what so ever but I do work in automotive engineering and have discussed this with the experts who work in the related engineering fields.

  13. Yugguy

    Remap FTW

    So Vw cripple their cars to solve this issue.

    They then become very cheap to buy.

    I buy one. I put a switchable remap in, which gives me around 30 to 40% more power/torque than it had BEFORE the crippling, which I can switch out when it goes for its MOT.

    WIN-WIN!

    1. Daz555

      Re: Remap FTW

      Children with respiratory illness thank you for your kindness.

      1. Marcus Fil

        Re: Re: Remap FTW

        You don't care about the adults then?

        But seriously the OP has a point. Third party remapping is already a problem - or consumer choice depending on your level of self-interest.

        IF the offending VW engines are recalled in the UK then those interested in performance over societal needs will be best advised to ignore the recall. However, both the government and, possibly, the insurance companies will take a dim view on that. If you have an affected car under six years old and you allow VW to 'fix' it then you have prima facie claim under 'Sale of Goods' act for compensation. As the OP points out you could even invest your VW 'compo' cheque in re-mapping technology (which with an appropriate 'kill switch' is very hard to pick up at an MOT test station).

        I can see 'emergency legislation' being enacted on this one - sadly not to protect the consumer, but to shore up the car industry whilst paying a sop to the health benefits. If this happens then I would suggest VW/Audi usw. (sic) dealers polish up their CVs - you will left be trying to sell a poisoned product. How many other companies will join you in the list remains to be seen.

        1. GW7
          FAIL

          Re: Sale of Goods Act

          WV dealers misrepresented the EA189 cars at the time of purchase, and have admitted this in writing. The SOGA means the dealers selling those cars are in breach of contract. Owners can pursue their dealer for damages under the SOGA by handing back the car (rejecting the goods). I recon you'd be looking at claiming the current dealer sticker price for the used car. The dealers don't have a fix yet, so they don't have a leg to stand on. When they do in 2016, anyone trying to reject their car will be told "this software update will fix it". Of course, it is unlikely that the update will maintain the specified mpg, torque, 0-60mph time, and reliability. But it will then be up to the owner to prove that, should they discover the consequences of the fix are unacceptable. That will be very difficult to prove legally (without full test reports on each car before and after the update) and I think VW at that point will be calling people's bluff. If you want out of VW, reject NOW! Don't wait for the fix, or you'll find you've been shafted.

      2. Yugguy

        Re: Remap FTW

        Actually both my remapped Bora and my remapped Focus diesels still passed the MOT test with the upgraded power map.

        In fact I am HELPING LOWER emissions. Both remapped cars also saw improved mpg, especially when cruising.

        1. GW7

          Re: Remap FTW

          Like VW diesels, your remap will have much higher NOx emissions, which are not tested by the MOT test. Your vehicle will no longer comply with the original type approvals (not that VW EA189s did anyhow) so under UK Construction and Use regs, your modification may be illegal (like VW's cheat). Perhaps though you are less likely to be found out than VW. Your insurance may be invalid unless you have declared the modification to your insurer, assuming you do have insurance.

    2. LucreLout Silver badge

      Re: Remap FTW

      To need a switchable map you'd really have to be going for glory....

      My main toy car is remapped rather sensibly (25% more power) but thanks to a racing cat, still slips in under the emissions radar.... provided you warm it up before testing.

      If I needed more power than that then I'd just sell the car and buy a more powerful car. Swappable maps and extreme power gains are.... not always the most cost effective way to achieve a torque/bhp tally; And since you'd be buying with the intent of hitting a given ouput, you may be better off with other choices?

      1. Steven Raith

        Re: Remap FTW

        That's certainly true for petrol cars, where getting hilarious power gains is trickier and tends to involve more than just a remap - unless you have a turbo, natch, then you'll need cams at least, and probably modified intake/exhaust to get any decent gains, then after that it's typically a case of if you have to ask how much it costs, you can't afford it.

        Modern TDs, particularly newer ones (from the last ten years, with capacities approaching 2 litres) you can easily pull a 25% torque increase and similar in power with a remap alone, and more if you decat it.

        Going from 200lb/ft to 280lb/ft at the low end of the rev range *really* makes a car feel quicker (Even if the power band is still only 1500rpm wide) so you can see why people do it. Assuming the clutch is up to it, of course....

        I'll stick with petrol stuff though - I like a wider powerband, ideally. Gives more flexibility and involves less gearbox stirring.

        Steven R

  14. Dick Emery

    Was it intentional though?

    I'm still trying to get my head around this. Did VW really intend to 'cheat' the system? Or was it a 'feature' used to make the cars low emission when used in built up areas? From my understanding (I Own a Ford Fiesta Zetec Diesel BTW) the cars throw out all the nasty soot the most when over a certain rev count. That is intended only to happen when out on the motorway for instance where there is little if any pedestrian footfall (Unlucky if you live close to a motorway but still). When running low revs most of the time in built up areas the system falls to a low emission mode?

    It's all rather puzzling.

    BTW do you think we will see a large increase in vehicle licensing for diesels in the near future? I can see a lot of savings on diesels going out of the window (after buying my somewhat overpriced diesel I believe any savings were probably lost anyhow over the course of time).

    It seems to me like the entire diesel fiasco was nothing but smoke and mirrors in the end and I should have just stuck with the devil I know.

    1. CaptainHook

      Re: Was it intentional though?

      @Dick Emery

      "Did VW really intend to 'cheat' the system? Or was it a 'feature' used to make the cars low emission when used in built up areas?"

      *****

      The software specifically triggered on the pattern of stops / accelerates / cruises (and probably other indicators such as GPS not showing any speed while the wheels reported speed) which are used in the various tests.

    2. Big Al 23

      Re: Was it intentional though?

      Unfortunately yes, a small group of VW engineers and programmers took it upon themselves to reduce the operating duty cycle on various emissions controls so that the VW Diesel engines in the U.S. would produce better mpg and power while emitting more exhaust pollutant than allowed. The rest of world (ROW), VW Diesels are still being investigated but there are different emissions requirements world wide so VW Diesels sold in other countries may still comply with all regulations. The solution to the non-compliance U.S. models is very simple however by updating the ECU software to run the emissions control duty cycles at a higher level that meets emissions requirements, which all VW Diesel engines do in testing.

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Was it intentional though?

      @Dick Emery

      "seems to me like the entire diesel fiasco was nothing but smoke"

      +1 thumbs-up for that.

  15. unwarranted triumphalism

    And suddenly, for some unknown reason, motorists are concerned about pollution...?

    Maybe they should sue.

    Because of all that pollution they're creating.

    Which must be someone else's fault.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      And suddenly, for some unknown reason, motorists are concerned about pollution...?

      Well governments don't give a hoot about the environment, despite their claims.

      Good reason for going after VW: for the environment.

      Real reason for going after VW: for another massive corporate windfall fine!

      I just wonder how many (European) jobs will be lost over this.

  16. Locky Silver badge

    Just VW doing this?

    Not a chance

    1. werdsmith Silver badge

      Re: Just VW doing this?

      I would have expected another car maker to have been outed by now, there has been plenty of time.

      It's all a bit quiet.

      1. Big Al 23

        Re: Just VW doing this?

        It appears that VW is the only company to do this. Most companies understand the consequences and that is why they would be very hesitant to violate emissions laws. VW did it to gain a small advantage in mpg and power. It was a bad decision by a rogue group of engineers and programmers.

    2. Solmyr ibn Wali Barad

      Re: Just VW doing this?

      As for this particular 'this' - yes, it's only VW.

      Others haven't claimed that they can do a low-emission diesel without any urea injection. Whatever those others have (or haven't) cooked up is another topic.

  17. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Possibly helpful, if you came here looking for "Am I affected?" info

    http://www.volkswagen.co.uk/owners/dieselinfo

    http://www.audi.co.uk/owners-area/emissions/check-your-car.html

    http://skoda-recallactions.skoda-auto.com/en-gb?cd=0

    http://www.seat.co.uk/owners/diesel-engines/home.html

    Noted with glee that the VW page is particularly explicit on one point:

    "If you have <snip> any petrol engine, you are not affected."

  18. Alistair Silver badge
    Windows

    Jetta TDI

    I finally got my "OMG we prostrate ourselves at your feet" letter from VW Canada. It sill has the "we'll let you know what we're going to do soon." action.

    I *like* my Jetta. The fuel bill for my 186Km round trip commute daily was the reason I bought the vehicle (compared to the 6cyl GrandCaravan and the 4 cyl Sun(bird/fire). I've not found anything that provides comparable real world fuel efficiency, comfort and drive experience. Unless VW go with a bolt on urea injection kit, I suspect that all three of those factors will suffer massively.

    I do know that with the PORT unit my vehicle was only 4% above rated NO2 limit on a 2 hour run on a reasonably nice fall day. It was the CO output that made me stop and think, at 12% over. (neighbour has access to the device through work, and we wont comment on where that is.....). I suspect that *my* results may not line up with all other results, since I'm driving standard, and I'll bet very long odds that the auto will be much worse on that spectrum. -- caveat - *both* primary path and secondary path O2 sensors have *stuck rich* more than once in the last year, but only during *long* sitting idle events in traffic jams, resetting them cleared the flag until the next high heat condition re-triggered it. For what it's worth, changing the air filter is suggested when this happens, and has been done.

    I am still inclined to go with a VW in the future at the moment, however, that position is riding on what VW does to recover from this situation more than any other single component of that decision.

    <Grumpy old bastard because AD just evicted my LDAP+Kerberos connection on my cluster after a patch last night.....>

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Jetta TDI

      All of the VW Diesels meet emissions requirements when the emissions devices use the proper duty cycles. A loss of approx. 3 mpg highway and six tenths of a second in 0-60 times is reported with proper software. VW may chose to ad hardware to mitigate any losses from increased duty cycles. Most VW owners like their VW and plan to keep them for obvious reasons. It was stupid for a small group within VW to screw with the duty cycles for the minor gains in mpg and power but some consumers are obsessed with these numbers so it's not a total surprise either.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Jetta TDI

        Well AC , as you're the resident VW spokes-puppet, could you comment on what VW think will be (Amazon) Jezza's point of view on just "reducing the nought to sixty acceleration time by six-hundred million nanoseconds" of a car, any car!

        I think, personally, he'll be rather sympathetic and suggest that your new CEO should be covered in rhubarb and savaged in a Barnsley guinnel by wild ferrets.

        I might be wrong!

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