Stellantis ordered to pay more than £200m after FCA admitted cheating emissions tests

  • Stellantis’s US unit ordered to pay £246m for cheating diesel emissions tests
  • FCA installed ‘deceptive software features’ on 100,000 vehicles
  • Firm reaches plea deal with US government which sees it forfeit £167m on top of £80m fine

Time 10:26 am, August 3, 2022

Stellantis had been ordered to pay close to £246m ($300m) after its US unit, formerly Fiat Chrysler Automobiles, pleaded guilty to a charge of criminal conspiracy.

In a case that predates Stellantis’s formation of FCA, the firm admitted making false representations about diesel emissions.

The admission related to 100,000 vehicles, namely Jeep Grand Cherokees made between 2014 and 2016, and Ram 1500 diesels.

The US Justice Department said FCA had ‘conspired to cheat US emissions tests’ by ‘installing deceptive software features intended to avoid regulatory scrutiny and fraudulently help the diesel vehicles meet required emissions standards’.

As a result, FCA – which has formed part of Stellantis since the 2021 merger with PSA Group – has been fined just shy of £80m ($96.1m).

After reaching a plea deal with the justice department, the firm was also ordered to forfeit a further £167m ($203.6m).

Todd Kim, US assistant attorney general, said: [The $300 million penalty]  is the result of an exhaustive three-year investigation.

‘This resolution shows that the Department of Justice is committed to holding corporate wrongdoers accountable for misleading regulators.’

Three FCA US employees have also been charged with conspiracy to defraud the U.S. and violate the Clean Air Act and are awaiting trial.

The firm itself must now review its compliance with the Clean Air Act and submit at a report to the American government.

It was the second time the group was found to have breached emission rules after previously paying a £255m ($311m) civil penalty as part of a class-action diesel lawsuit.

That case also resulted in FCA paying out more than £150m ($183m) in compensation to more than 63,000 people.

Jack Williams's avatar

Jack joined the Car Dealer team in 2021 as a staff writer. He previously worked as a national newspaper journalist for BNPS Press Agency. He has provided news and motoring stories for a number of national publications including The Sun, The Times and The Daily Mirror.

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