German prosecutors have initiated an investigation at Audi about the ongoing 2.0 TDI diesel engine emissions scandal.
According to the Funke Media group, Wolfram Herrle – chief prosecutor in Audi’s hometown of Ingolstadt in southern Germany – a preliminary investigation has commenced to find out whether it will be necessary to launch a full investigation about the rigged four-cylinder, 2.0-liter turbodiesel engines which have a special software designed to allow the cars pass the emissions tests even though in reality these vehicles have up to 40 times higher emissions levels.
This news really doesn’t come as a big surprise as we expect all of the marques from the Volkswagen Group to be investigated. In addition, the German prosecutor’s office has already announced former CEO Martin Winterkorn is being investigated for fraud after VW admitted there are around 11 million diesel cars – including 2.1M Audis – in the world equipped with the so-called “defeat device.”
This scandal has serious repercussions on VW’s premium brand as Audi’s R&D boss Ulrich Hackenberg has already been suspended along with his equivalent at the Volkswagen core brand and also at Porsche. Taking into account the Volkswagen Group will spend €6.5 billion to fix all those cars, chances are development of future models for all the brands will be pushed back due to limited funding.