Fiat Chrysler to modify 104,000 U.S. diesel vehicles: company

Fri May 19, 2017 4:22pm EDT
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By David Shepardson

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Fiat Chrysler Automobiles NV (FCHA.MI: Quote) plans to update software that it expects will resolve the concerns of U.S. regulators about excess emissions in 104,000 older diesels, the Italian-American automaker said on Friday.

The company also said on Friday that it had formally sought approval to sell two 2017 diesel models after months of talks and testing.

The software update would begin rolling out once the Environmental Protection Agency and California Air Resources Board approved, Fiat Chrysler said. The company said it does not anticipate any impact on performance or fuel efficiency.

The EPA declined to comment. California said in a statement it "is continuing its discussions with FCA to fully address and resolve the issues" it raised.

In January, the EPA and California accused Fiat Chrysler of illegally using undisclosed software to allow excess diesel emissions in 104,000 U.S. 2014-2016 Jeep Grand Cherokees and Dodge Ram 1500 trucks in a notice of violation.

The notice was the result of a probe that arose out of regulators' investigation of rival Volkswagen AG's (VOWG_p.DE) excess emissions.

Reuters reported on Wednesday that the Justice Department is preparing to file a civil lawsuit against the automaker for selling 104,000 vehicles that emit excess diesel emissions if it does not reach an agreement with the company.

Fiat Chrysler said Friday it believes "these actions should help facilitate a prompt resolution to ongoing discussions with the Environment and Natural Resources Division of the U.S. Department of Justice and other governmental agencies."   Continued...

A screen displays the ticker information for Fiat Chrysler Automobiles NV at the post where it's traded on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) in New York City, U.S., January 12, 2016.  REUTERS/Brendan McDermid