(Boise) – Attorney General Lawrence Wasden today announced that companies Fiat Chrysler and Robert Bosch will pay more than $171 million as part of proposed settlements involving illegal emissions defeat devices. Specifically, the settlements resolve allegations the German engineering company Bosch supplied and helped program illegal emissions “defeat device” software used by Fiat Chrysler in diesel vehicles to circumvent emission standards for air pollutants. Bosch also supplied the software to Volkswagen, which settled with states in June 2016.
Under the proposed settlements, Fiat Chrysler and Bosch will pay $3 million to the state of Idaho. As directed by state law, the money will be deposited into the state’s Consumer Protection Fund.
“I’m pleased to announce these proposed settlements and bring the investigation to a close,” Wasden said. “Make no mistake, these companies cheated and got caught. I hope the millions of dollars they will now pay as a result will permanently improve their behavior and signal to other companies that they, too, are best served when they follow the law.”
Following a nearly two-year investigation, state attorneys general alleged that Fiat Chrysler and several subsidiaries installed unlawful defeat device software and undisclosed Auxiliary Emissions Control Devices in 2014-16 Jeep Grand Cherokee and Ram 1500 diesels. The states alleged that Fiat Chrysler cheated on federal and state emissions tests by calibrating the vehicles’ software to hide actual pollution levels. The company was also accused of misleading consumers by falsely claiming the “Eco-Diesel”-branded Jeep SUVs and Ram 1500 trucks were environmentally friendly and compliant with state laws.
The settlements announced today will require Fiat Chrysler to pay Idaho $2 million for deceptively and unfairly marketing, selling and leasing the vehicles to consumers. The settlements will also prohibit Fiat Chrysler from engaging in future unfair or deceptive acts in its dealings with consumers. Fiat Chrysler is also required to carry out obligations under a related settlement, which include eliminating the defeat device features from the relevant software; providing eligible owners and lessees extended warranties; and, together with Bosch, paying eligible owners who take their vehicle to an authorized dealer for the software repair.
The average restitution for consumers is expected to be around $2,900. For former owners and lessees, restitution is likely to total about $1,000. Those affected can visit EcoDieselSettlement.info for more information.
State attorneys general allege that Bosch facilitated the implementation of the defeat device software in more than 600,000 Volkswagen and Fiat Chrysler vehicles over a period that spanned more than a decade. The states alleged that Bosch continued to assist these customers as they implemented the defeat devices and concealed the company’s misconduct from regulators and the public.
Under the terms of the proposed settlement with the Idaho Attorney General, Bosch will pay the state just over $1 million. The proposed agreement also requires Bosch to maintain strict processes to monitor compliance and to refuse to accommodate requests for software that could result in the installation of defeat device software.
Under related settlements, Bosch will pay approximately $27.5 million to consumers who purchased or leased the affected Fiat Chrysler vehicles. Bosch previously paid more than $275 million to consumers who purchased or leased affected Volkswagens. Consumers can visit EcoDieselSettlement.info for more information.
The multistate settlements includes Idaho and 49 other jurisdictions, including the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and Guam. All told, Bosch will pay $98.7 million to the jurisdictions and make a separate $5 million payment to the National Association of Attorneys General (NAAG) for training and future enforcement purposes. As proposed, Fiat Chrysler will pay a total of $72.5 million.