S. Korea to test emissions of Volkswagen cars

September 21, 2015
(Korea Times file)

(Korea Times file)

SEOUL (Yonhap) — South Korea’s environment ministry said Monday that it will conduct emissions tests on three car models from Volkswagen after the German carmaker recently admitted to cheating on air pollution tests in the United States.

Earlier, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) accused Volkswagen of deliberately faking emissions tests by using software that activates full pollution controls only when the car is going through official testing.

Volkswagen CEO Martin Winterkorn issued an apology for the deception. Volkswagen faces billions of dollars in fines and massive recalls for the cars equipped with the diesel engines in question.

The environment ministry here said that it will conduct emission tests “in the middle of October” on three models by the German carmaker to look into speculations that such deception could have happened to cars imported to South Korea.

The Volkswagen Golf and Jetta and the A3 by Audi, a luxury brand under the German carmaker, will be subject to the tests. A ministry official said that “chances are high” that the same scam could have happened outside the U.S.

Volkswagen Korea claimed that the emission standards in South Korea are the same as those in Europe, adding that the cars to be recalled in the U.S. have “nothing to do with” the car models that will be tested by the environment ministry.