Opel has recently come under fire following allegations of defeat devices and software tricks to allow its diesel vehicles to pollute more or less based on different variables.
For the umpteenth time, Opel has issued a statement assuring the public it is in full compliance with regulations. However, in this statement, the brand has taken on individual issues accordingly.
For any question raised, Opel supplied an answer.
Does Opel have any illegal defeat devices? The DUH diagnosed four such illegal defeat devices in the Zafira 1.6 CDTI.
Every engine control system contains numerous control functions that are vital for the functionality of an emissions control system.
Every automotive manufacturer, without exception, uses various parameters including speed, air pressure or engine speed to regulate the emissions control system. We are absolutely convinced that we do not use any illegal defeat devices in this complex field.
We at Opel do not use any illegal software. Our engines are in compliance with the legal requirements.
The hacker is isolating individual parameters of the engine control system and is coming to misleading conclusions. However, individual parameters are not enough to evaluate the function of a very complex emissions control system in general. A modern engine control system contains more than 17,000 functional parameters to ensure the functionality of the propulsion system. Emissions control systems are extremely complex and highly integrated. This demonstrates the necessity for the 17,000 values used by the software. The hacker only pointed out four, and there is no accompanying understanding of the physical realities the system must deal with in the conclusions around these four values. These challenges are regulated by the constantly evolving and overlapping legal requirements, and the physics encountered by the vehicle.
And what about the system switching off at a certain air pressure?
Internal combustion requires an adequate air/fuel balance to ensure stable operation at altitude and to avoid excessive sooting which is regulated in addition to NOx. Even at higher altitudes, the engine needs to be supplied with sufficient oxygen to prevent extensive sooting. This effort to protect the engine renders it an appropriate mechanism within the system. Our voluntary improvement measure that we announced last year and will implement as of the summer, will improve the system performance up to an ambient pressure of 840 mbar. We are thus even exceeding future strict RDE requirements.
It’s the latest recap to perform damage control over the allegations, which still hurt the brand despite them not being true. Opel is currently in the process of working with the German government to supply the necessary software and materials to clear Opel once and for all.