/ 10 January 2019

Fiat Chrysler to pay $650-million over software misuse — report

The Fiat Chrysler Automobile Group headquarters
The Fiat Chrysler Automobile Group headquarters (Stefano Guidi/LightRocket via Getty Images)

Fiat Chrysler has agreed to pay nearly $650-million to resolve litigation over its use of illegal engine-control software on diesel vehicles that produced false results in emissions tests, The New York Times reported Wednesday.

The automaker will pay $305-million in penalties to the federal government and California, which also brought suit, the NYT said, citing two unidentified sources who were briefed on the issue.

It said the agreement is expected to be announced on Thursday.

Fiat Chrysler will also pay an average of $2 500 to owners of 104 000 diesel-powered Ram 1500 trucks and Jeep Grand Cherokee sport utility vehicles from the 2014, 2015 and 2016 model years.

The NYT said these payments could total more than $260 million.

Fiat Chrysler will also pay about $72-million in civil penalties to settle litigation brought by various states, and $6-million to settle other claims, the newspaper said.

US authorities including the Environmental Protection Agency sued the Italian-US automaker in 2017 alleging it had used illegal software that turned off pollution controls under certain driving conditions.

The EPA said the software enabled the vehicles to pass emissions tests while allowing them to release higher levels of pollutants in normal driving.

The accord does not call for Fiat Chrysler to admit any wrongdoing, the newspaper said.

The Fiat Chrysler probe comes in the wake of the diesel emissions-cheating scandal that rocked Volkswagen and then spread to nearly all the major auto companies.

© Agence France-Presse