Gov threatens carmakers with unlimited fines for emissions test cheats

Proposed new rules could see vehicle manufacturers and importers hit with criminal charges

Gov threatens carmakers with unlimited fines for emissions test cheats
Carmakers who cheat emissions tests were threatened with unlimited fines . Image: Bigstock.

Ministers revealed plans to take action against carmakers that fit emissions cheat devices with an “unlimited fine”.

The anti-pollution rules being drawn up in Westminster could hit importers as well as manufacturers for dealing with cars that have “defeat devices” fitted.

The government has now launched a consultation into the plans, which would see companies responsible facing criminal charges and a substantial fine for selling new vehicles containing software designed to deceive emissions tests in the UK.

Transport minister, Jesse Norman said: “We continue to take the unacceptable actions of Volkswagen extremely seriously, and we are framing new measures to crack down on emissions cheats in future.

“Those who cheat should be held to proper account in this country, legally and financially, for their actions.”

“Held to proper account”

In response to the proposals, Mike Hawes, SMMT chief executive, said: “Every new car sold in the UK meets the strictest of regulations governing everything from safety to emissions standards and how vehicles are tested and approved for sale.

“Government’s own testing of vehicles on the road has consistently shown them to be fully compliant, and we are pleased that government recognises that manufacturers have been rigorous in meeting the standards.

“There are already severe penalties for any manufacturer involved in any kind of misconduct in the type approval process conducted here in the UK and the government is now looking to extend this to all vehicles wherever they have been approved.”

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