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CARB to Volkswagen: No soup for you!

Volkswagen proposes a solution to fix its 2.0-liter diesels, which the California Air Resources Board promptly rejects.

Volkswagen's investigation into the emissions scandal is not yet finished.
© Ralf Hirschberger/dpa/Corbis

It looks like Dieselgate won't be going away anytime soon. After Volkswagen produced a solution for the half-a-million or so overpolluting diesels on American roads, the California Air Resources Board (CARB) told the automaker to go back to the drawing board.

CARB's ruling only affects 2.0-liter Volkswagen diesel vehicles sold in California, but in a statement, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) agreed with the group's assessment of Volkswagen's proposed fix, for which there are no further details. The automaker has yet to provide a fix for its 3.0-liter diesel models -- that one is due on February 2.

The 2.0-liter fix was kiboshed because "the proposals do not adequately address overall impacts on vehicle performance, emissions and safety," CARB's statement explains. In addition, Volkswagen's proposal "contain[s] gaps and lack[s] sufficient detail," and it lacked enough specifics for a proper technical evaluation. You can read the full rejection letter on CARB's website.

Volkswagen did not immediately respond to a request for comment. This rejection won't necessarily throw a wrench in the conversations between the automaker and the EPA or CARB, but it is yet another setback in what is already a protracted debacle.

The automaker has been in hot water since September, when it announced that it had been caught deceiving emissions tests around the world. Special "defeat device" software would cover up nitrogen-oxide levels in lab testing, only to pollute well above legal limits once the cars hit the road. There doesn't appear to be an easy solution to this mess.