Tag: VW

VW shows off self-driving car

Hitler’s favourite car maker, VW, has been trying to put diesel-gate behind it by releasing an eco-friendly self-driving car.

The car was demoed at the Geneva auto show, and VW said it will invest billions of euros in electric cars, ride-hailing and automated driving, and launch over 30 electric models by 2025.

The self-driving concept car called Sedric – a so-called Level 5 vehicle capable of fully automated operation – is a precursor for more such models from the Volkswagen (VW) group in years to come.

Chief Executive Matthias Mueller said VW is hiring top specialists and plans to spend several billions of euros on automated driving alone.

Sedric can carry four passengers and could be used for ride-sharing fleets as well as for individual consumers, VW said.

Mercedes-Benz unveiled its fully autonomous F 015 luxury concept two years ago. But Toyota has said it does not expect to see Level 5 cars in widespread use for another 10-15 years, while Ford does not plan to offer such vehicles for consumers until 2025 or later.

VW refuses to give British a payout in diesel emissions scandal

Hitler’s favourite car company, VW, has denied that Brits were deceived during its emissions testing scandal and unlike everywhere else in the world its Blighty customers will not get any compensation.

For those who came in late, VW diesels were fitted with software which could tell that they were being tested for emissions and tune themselves to pass. VW has forked out millions to make watchdogs and regulators worldwide go away.

However, Paul Willis, the auto company’s UK managing director said that while the German outfit might have tried the stunt in most places in the world, it did not advertise these cars in the UK based on its nitrogen oxide emissions.

He claimed that VW had neither done anything wrong in the country nor had it misled anyone. The company maintained that there is no “legal basis” for compensation in the UK.

In Europe, Volkswagen admitted to tampering with 8.5 million vehicles to cheat emissions tests but it said that the software did not amount to a “defeat device” under EU law.

Willis added that 470,000 of the UK diesel vehicles, which were affected from the emissions scandal, had been fixed by the company. This is less than half of the 1.2 million vehicles of Audi, Porsche, VW, Skoda and Seat brands that were found to be affected.

Willis explained that the delay was partly amid the need for EU regulatory approvals before installing the new software. He said VW had to wait for many regulators, including those in Germany and the UK, to approve the proposed fixes to the cars. Some approvals, he said were received as late as December 2016.

While UK customers might be angry that they are the only ones in the world not receiving any compensation, Willis said there was no comparison between the situation in the US and Europe, because VW said so.

It does seem odd that VW seems to believe that it can get out of paying its British customers compensation while having to fork out money to practically every other country in the world.

Transport Minister Chris Grayling, to seek more detailed information that would allow take further steps. He added that launching a legal action against VW had still not been ruled out.

VW has to pay $15 billion for emissions scandal

vwHitler’s favourite car company Volkswagen is having to write a $15 billion cheque to make a US court case into its diesel car emissions go away.

A federal judge signed off on one of the largest consumer settlements in US history, which includes a massive vehicle buyback programme and environmental remediation efforts.

US District Court Judge Charles Breyer in San Francisco approved the sweeping agreement between consumers, the government, California regulators and the German automaker. He said the agreement was”fair, reasonable and adequate”.

Last year Volkswagen admitted that it rigged 11 million vehicles worldwide with software designed to dodge emissions standards.

The company is still facing criminal investigations by the US Justice Department and German prosecutors which could cost it even more. More than 475,000 VW owners in the US can choose between a buyback or a free fix and compensation, if a repair becomes available.

Buybacks range in value from $12,475 to $44,176, including restitution payments, and vary based on mileage. People who opt for a fix approved by the Environmental Protection Agency will receive payouts ranging from $5,100 to $9,852, depending on the book value of their car.

Volkswagen will also pay $2.7 billion for environmental mitigation and another $2 billion for clean-emissions infrastructure.

Deal backers include a class action group of consumers, the EPA, the California Air Resources Board and the FTC which growled at VW over the company’s “false” advertisements marketing its smog-spewing diesels as “clean diesel.”

Meanwhile, VW is negotiating a separate settlement with more than 80,000 owners of diesel vehicles fitted with similar software.



VW locking is a doddle to break

vwHitler’s favourite car company, VW, is in hot water over its electronic key which has a security vulnerably which makes it easy for hackers to open the car doors.

According to Wired,  security researchers found they can  use software defined radio (SDR) to remotely unlock hundreds of millions of cars.

Led by Flavio Garcia at the University of Birmingham in the UK, the group of hackers reverse-engineered an undisclosed Volkswagen component to extract a cryptographic key value that is common to many of the company’s vehicles.

When combined with the unique value encoded on an individual vehicle’s remote key fob—obtained with a little electronic eavesdropping, say—you have a functional clone that will lock or unlock that car. VW has apparently acknowledged the vulnerability and has changed some of the numbering on new parts.

The UoB also found another security hole which affects Alfa Romeo, Citroën, Fiat, Ford, Mitsubishi, Nissan, Opel, and Peugeot.

It exploits a much older cryptographic scheme used in key fobs called HiTag2. The hacker has to do some electronic eavesdropping to capture a series of codes sent out by a remote key fob. Once a few codes had been gathered, the encryption scheme can be encyrpted in under a minute.

When the attacks might appear a bit convoluted, it is thought that they are behind a rash of car thefts, including a few in the US as hackers exploit the power of 1990s-era automotive-grade encryption with cheap hacking gear.

US discovers secret software in VW

17-volkswagen-75-052012Volkswagen’s diesel scandal could deepn as it appears Hitler’s favourite car maker has three hidden software programs in its 3.0-litre engines.

Concerns about the German car manufacturers’ 2.0-litre engines could soon be sorted, but the discovery of the hidden software has thrown the future of 3.0-litre diesels into uncertainty.

That secret software in Volkswagen’s 3.0-litre diesels can turn off the vehicles’ emissions controls.  The emissions control system allegedly shuts off after 22 minutes, when most emissions tests take about 20.

If this software exists,  then it will be under the bonnet of all 3.0-litre diesels that Volkswagen sells in the US. This includes the Audi Q7, Volkswagen Touareg and Porsche Cayenne SUVs. Approximately 85,000 of these cars are roaming around the US, and they’re already under scrutiny for some software that VW “forgot” to tell regulators about.

Audi said in an emailed statement: “We continue to work closely with the EPA and CARB to try to secure approval of a technical resolution for affected vehicles with 3.0L V6 TDI engines as quickly as possible. An updated proposal is undergoing thorough testing and analysis and we intend to submit this to the regulators in August. The Court has instructed the parties to report on the status of these discussions on August 25.”

Previously, Volkswagen said it believed the 3.0-litre diesel issue could be solved with a software fix. Its 3.0-litre issues are being dealt with separately to its 2.0-litre diesels, which are covered under its $15 billion settlement with US authorities, which will include buybacks and one-time cash payments.

Volkswagen first ended up in this situation after it admitted to intentionally installing secret software in its 2.0-litre diesels. That software curtailed nitrogen oxide emissions in lab-testing environments, but once on the road, the diesels would pollute well in excess of legal limitations. It was allegedly used in response to ever-stricter emissions regulations.

VW goes electric

b299405f6eafe0ac98ce9d9405a17663 (1)Adolf Hitler’s favourite car company Volkswagen has decided that the only way to avoid being caught out fudging emission readings is to make more cars that are electric.

Volkswagen wants to make 30 electric plug-in models by 2025 as part of a cunning plan to overhaul its global strategy which has been limping along since it was caught lying about how environmentally friendly is cars were.

Volkswagen CEO Matthias Mueller on Thursday articulated a new vision for the automaker up to 2025, describing electric cars, ride-hailing services and cost cutting as critical to the company’s future.

Volkswagen, which also owns Audi and Porsche, will “significantly” reduce the number of models it makes and will slash almost $9 billion in spending.

This will go some way to help pay the $18 billion it will need to cover the costs of its emissions scandal.

The bet on fully electric vehicles will be paired with an investment in battery technology, though Mueller provided few details of what that would entail. Among the electric vehicles already in the works are the Porsche Mission E sports car, billed as a Tesla fighter, and the Audi e-tron quattro luxury electric crossover concept.

It is a brave move. The electric market is not really established yet, and although some countries like Holland are talking about banning petrol cars, electric cars are still too pricy for the great unwashed to afford.

If VW pull it off, it will be in the vanguard of the electric revolution and go a long way to removing the stain left by the emissions scandal.

VW software crisis deepens

b299405f6eafe0ac98ce9d9405a17663 (1)Adolf Hitler’s favourite car maker VW appears to have laid itself down in a ditch and set itself on fire over its testing software.

Not only did it doctor its software to foil emission testing, Reuters said that VW might have fudged petrol consumption figures too.

VW admitted that it had understated the fuel consumption of 800,000 cars sold in Europe, while majority stakeholder Porsche Automobil Holding warned VW’s latest findings could stuff up its its results.

The latest revelation about fuel economy and carbon dioxide emissions represented a $2.19 billion economic risk.

Until now the scandal cantered on software on up to 11 million diesel vehicles worldwide that VW admitted vastly understated its actual emissions of smog-causing pollutant nitrogen oxide.

Now it seems that VW understated fuel consumption and carbon dioxide emissions, areas which US  regulators have yet to address.

The findings mostly apply to smaller diesel engines, one petrol powered engine is also affected.

One analyst said that “VW is leaving us all speechless.”

Chief Executive Matthias Mueller said in a statement that he had pushed hard for the relentless and comprehensive clarification of events,

“Volkswagen  will stop at nothing and nobody. This is a painful process but it is our only alternative.”


VW blames emissions scandal on software engineers

b299405f6eafe0ac98ce9d9405a17663 (1)The carmaker created by the Nazis to create show cars for white aryan families  is scapegoating the software engineers for its current emissions woes.

VW’s Michael Horn told the US Congress that the decision to install the emission cheating software was all the work of a couple of software engineers.

Apparently the board was not aware that the testing cheating software which allowed it to cheat emissions were installed. The software engineers snuck into the production chain and convinced everyone one to install it using their impressive mind control techniques.

Normally you would not expect a company executive to pull off a stunt like this, but apparently someone pointed out that most US politicians don’t believe in climate change or evolution so they are probably stupid enough to believe in anything.

That did not really work last time. The issue of defeat devices at VW has been a historic problem.

In 1974, VW had a run-in with US authorities regarding the use of defeat devices in 1974, and in December 2014 it recalled cars to address nox emissions.”

More than 530,000 cars in the US will need to be recalled for significant engine modifications, not a software fix. Only 80,000 Passats are eligible for the software fix.

There is no word on the effects these modifications will have on the cars’ performance, fuel consumption, etc.

Carmakers use copyright to hide emission cheating software

b299405f6eafe0ac98ce9d9405a17663 (1)Carmakers are using the US copyright laws to cheat US emission laws, claiming that allowing independent researchers to look under the car bonnets breaks the Digital Millennium Copyright Act.

The Electronic Frontier Foundation [EFF] claims that researchers could have uncovered Volkswagen emissions cheat sooner if the carmaker had not hidden behind the DMCA.

Writing in its bog the EFF said that carmakers argue that it’s unlawful for independent researchers to look at the code that controls vehicles without the manufacturer’s permission.

Apparently they use the DMCA to prevent competition in the markets for add-on technologies and repair tools. But it also makes it harder for watchdogs to find safety or security issues, such as faulty code that can lead to unintended acceleration or vulnerabilities that let an attacker take over your car.

As a test the EFF asked the Librarian of Congress to grant an exemption to the DMCA to make it crystal clear that independent research on vehicle software doesn’t violate copyright law. This was opposed by the manufacturers who claimed that individuals would use the to violate emissions laws. Ironically the Environmental Protection Agency supported the manufacturers because it was worried that individual users would doctor their cars to cheat car tests.

What the EFF, and we guess the EPA did not know at the time Volkswagen had already programmed its entire fleet of vehicles to conceal how much pollution they generated using that code.

This code was shielded from watchdogs’ investigation by the anti-circumvention provision of the DMCA.

“When you entrust your health, safety, or privacy to a device, the law shouldn’t punish you for trying to understand how that device works and whether it is trustworthy. We hope the Copyright Office and the Librarian of Congress agree when they rule on our exemptions next month,”  the EFF said.


VW recall ordered over fudged emission tests

b299405f6eafe0ac98ce9d9405a17663 (1)The Obama administration has ordered Volkswagen to recall nearly a half-million cars, after the carmaker illegally installed software in its diesel-power cars to evade emission standards.

The Environmental Protection Agency accused the German automaker of using software to detect when the car is undergoing its periodic state emissions testing. When the software is switched off the cars chuck out 40 times more pollution.

Cynthia Giles, the E.P.A.’s assistant administrator for the Office of Enforcement and Compliance said she expected more from a company which became famous for a car which was designed by the Nazis.

Agency officials issued the car company a notice of violation and said it had admitted to the use of a so-called defeat device. The recall involves 4-cylinder Volkswagen and Audi vehicles from model years 2009-15.

A spokeswoman for Volkswagen confirmed that the company had received the notice and said the automaker was cooperating with the investigation. She declined to comment further on the case.

Drew Kodjak, executive director of the International Council on Clean Transportation, first noticed the discrepancy between Volkswagen’s emissions in testing laboratories and on the road. They brought the issue to the attention of the E.P.A., which conducted further tests on the cars, and ultimately discovered the use of the defeat device software.

Under the terms of the Clean Air Act, the Justice Department could impose fines of as much as $37,500 for each recalled vehicle, for a possible total penalty of as much as $18 billion.