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Suzuki faces emissions scandal

Suzuki faces emissions scandal

Suzuki motorcycles is facing its own emissions scandal after the US Environmental Protection Agency charged a former worker with fudging emissions figures.

It’s not exactly on the same grand scale as the multi-billion-dollar emissions scandal facing VW, however it shows that we can’t necessarily trust manufacturers with statistics.

We wonder how many motorcycle manufacturers also fudge figures on fuel economy, power and torque!

Meanwhile, the EPA has accused former Suzuki Motor Corp analyst Wayne Powell of lying about motorcycle emissions figures which is a violation of the Clean Air Act.

It involved altering production numbers on a series of 2012 motorcycles sold in the USA.

The EPA claims Powell attempted to pass off Suzuki class III engines as meeting emissions standards when they exceeded the federal limit, based on the number of domestic sales.

He then attempted to offset the averages in a year-end report by applying “banked” emissions credits, resulting in no violations.

Suzuki was not a participant in emissions credits banking programs at the time, according to the court filing.

When he was caught by EPA officers in 2014, Powell sent an amended report without the claim of having credits, but still failed to report Suzuki exceeding the limit.

He also claimed there had a been a “computer software” problem when accounting emissions and that he “corrected some mistakes”.

“In fact, he had changed some of the accurate numbers to false numbers so that the result would show Suzuki to be in compliance with the Clean Air Act,” the federal government alleges.

EPA crackdown

The US is getting tough on this sort of offence.

In 2016, the EPA fined Harley $12m ($A15.7m) for fitting aftermarket the tuners which have been found to emit illegal amounts of pollution.

Harley-Davidson Screamin' Eagle Street Performance Tuner
Harley-Davidson Screamin’ Eagle Street Performance Tuner

In March a US federal fudge ordered VW pay $2.8 billion in penalties for intentionally circumventing US pollution laws.

And now the US government claims Fiat Chrysler has intentionally installed software in some vehicles to circumvent EPA emissions standards.