The news cycle has been rife with reports of automakers beyond Volkswagen exhibiting shady behavior insofar as diesel vehicles are concerned. Groups have claimed that several automakers' diesels are polluting more than laboratory tests would lead the public to believe. One of those automakers is Mercedes-Benz, and its parent company is not happy.
Ever since Volkswagen admitted to creating software that curtailed emissions in laboratory environments while over-polluting in every other situation, governments and advocacy groups have been on the hunt to determine whether or not other automakers have taken similar steps.
"Daimler AG once again absolutely rejects the inherent accusation of manipulation," the company said in a statement Thursday. It's referring to the Dutch Organisation for Applied Science Research, a study from which some media outlets used as proof that Mercedes' Euro-spec C220 CDI diesel is willfully polluting above and beyond legal limits.
"We would again point out that it is common that deviations occur in real driving conditions compared with the certified norm values," Daimler stated. "That is no reference to manipulation; they result primarily from conditions different to the legally-prescribed laboratory conditions."
A simple on-road test of Volkswagen's defeat-device-equipped vehicles would have caught this problem much earlier. Only when an independent group from West Virginia University discovered some discrepancies, several years after these cars went on sale, did this issue become apparent.
The US Environmental Protection Agency and several European outfits have committed to using more real world testing in the future, to prevent this issue from happening again.