AD #1719 – Is VW Underreporting Claims?, Audi Intros Bi-Fuel A4, ICE Has Room to Grow

October 9th, 2015 at 11:47am

Runtime: 7:17

- Is VW Underreporting Claims?
- Chevy Makes It Easier To Get To Bed
- Audi Introduces Bi-Fuel Car
- Toyota Makes Breakfast with a Racecar
- ICE Has Room to Grow

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51 Comments to “AD #1719 – Is VW Underreporting Claims?, Audi Intros Bi-Fuel A4, ICE Has Room to Grow”

  1. Buzzerd Says:

    the power running boards are great on my Avalanche … until they get full of salt and road crap and then they stop working, not so great.

  2. motorman Says:

    Why doesn’t VW just set the computer on their diesels to run all the time in the test mode and they would be in compliance ????

  3. Jon M Says:

    Ah, the timing of it all. This is the last kind of report VW wants out in the media right now. How many, though, will try to insist that VW’s cheating scandal gives rise to suspicion that the number of incidents per million is artificially low? Even absent the cheating it sounds suspect, but I think the cheating will add fuel to the fire for some.

  4. Lex Says:

    The Toyota Makes Breakfast with a Racecar is just plain dumb!

  5. HtG Says:

    vw reporting

    When I go to the Bloomberg piece I see that while vw may be very low, Honda and Nissan are also very low compared to the average. Meanwhile GM, Toyota and BMW are almost double the average. The uncalled for joke would be that vws spend most of their time in the shop rather than on the roads like Toyotas. But it is a wide range of results across the carcos and you could question a lot of the numbers; like why is Ford’s score half of GM’s? I’m thinking there’s a methodology issue.

  6. Lex Says:

    Subaru is really focusing on what the consumer wants and needs out of a affordable everyday vehicle. The Viziv Concept in the attached clip needs to be the styling / design language incorporated into future Subaru’s. I could see a Large Viziv as a Tribeca replacement and a regular size Viziv as the next generation Forester.

    I attempted to include this link in my comment yesterday without success. I am trying again.

  7. HtG Says:

    The results are also based on estimates of cars still on the road, beginning in 2005. So maybe older vws just don’t last so long.

    Also, Nissan says they’re in compliance.

  8. G.A.Branigan Says:

    I just watched Autoline This Week,Mary ann Wright was one of the best speakers you’ve had in a while.She has so much interesting information about where everything is going,especially ICE.Fascinating.I had no idea how far the engineers have come as far as integrating various technologies etc.Great show John,thanks.

    ps: the show was too short.It indeed flew by and leaves me wanting more.Get her back as soon as you can please.

  9. pedro fernandez Says:

    Toyota may be able to make b-fast with regenerative braking, but can’t seem to want to make their own small car for the US market, instead they have to buy someone else’s product and put a Scion emblem on it

  10. MJB Says:


    Perhaps. But so was this (at the time), but it worked:

  11. Kit Gerhart Says:

    5 I agree that there almost has to be a methodology difference. I might expect GM to be high, given all of the ratty, and probably ill-maintained 80′s and early 90′s GM cars and S10′s I see, but why is Nissan so low? Do their cars, like VWs, not survive to get in that state? There can’t be that much difference.

  12. pedro fernandez Says:

    CR put out a video of a test they did with the “cheat” VW Diesels and when driving with the cheat code on, it got slightly worse mileage and slower acceleration.

  13. MJB Says:


    Did they quantify how much worse mileage? New 0-60 time?

  14. HtG Says:

    It’s a pretty small difference. Like going from 50mph to 46. But if you consider the extra cost of a diesel, maybe buyers wouldn’t be interested. I still want to know if there’s a durability issue that actually motivated the cheat. I read somewhere that the fix from vw will make the cars hit their rated mileage rather than exceeding it. I don’t know if people can sue because performance is slightly degraded. Does a court and jury care if the car is less peppy?

  15. HtG Says:

    btw, I subscribe to CR on YT, which is why I saw the vid.

    Let’s see if there’s anymore Friday afternoon news dumps.

  16. pedro fernandez Says:

    12 yes they did, it’s not much. but it does minimize the “advantage” of operating a Diesel vs a gas engine.

  17. pedro fernandez Says:

    The VW salesman has replaced the Maytag repairman as the loneliest man in town.

  18. pedro fernandez Says:

    BTW, I have not seen any more local TV ads for area VW dealers, they used to run ads all the time on daytime TV shows.

  19. Kit Gerhart Says:

    12 Was the test of a TDI with, or without the urea injection? Pre-2015 Golf and Jetta are “without.” Other 2.0 TDI’s are “with.”

  20. HtG Says:

    18 Those ads get paid for by the OE. So maybe vw is redirecting some of that money and giving directly to the dealers?

    Don’t expect me to watch the local news to do my own research, please. Man, lots of car ads over there.

  21. HtG Says:

    Here’s the link to CR’s vid,…

  22. joe Says:

    I really like the idea of GM’s running board moving to the rear to access the bed.

  23. Kit Gerhart Says:

    21 Tnx, HtG. I couldn’t find it by searching CR’s web site.

  24. pedro fernandez Says:

    It was on Youtube, that is where I watch all the CR videos.

  25. Kit Gerhart Says:

    It looks like they tested both. I’m surprised that the difference was as small as it was, expecially with the 2011 car w/o urea. Still, the 8% drop in fuel economy would quite likely make me buy the 1.8t gasser rather than the TDI, if I were buying one of the cars.

  26. HtG Says:

    Do you think this difference was enough to motivate the cheat at vw? CR wasn’t testing for what happens to the cars over many miles in cheatmode. Also, extra urea would cost owners more money.

  27. pedro fernandez Says:

    All this should allow Toyota to sell even more Prii, the true mileage champion.

  28. Kit Gerhart Says:

    It seems to me that there is “more to the story” than just mpg and acceleration times. I’m wondering if the longevity is compromised in cheat mode, due to using more EGR, or something. There doesn’t seem to be enough difference in performance or mpg to take the risk of doing what they did. Yeah, the new ones might use more urea too, increasing operating cost.

  29. G.A.Branigan Says:

    When the VW first broke,I posted a comment where I stated that MAYBE vw did this because the emissions equipment isn’t up to operate 100% duty cycle,and I still believe that.They made it to turn on when being tested,and turned off when on the road.That way they made to system for dirt cheap,and of course would last forever because it wasn’t used.Jmho and I’m still sticking with it…

  30. Kit Gerhart Says:

    I still haven’t heard what is actually happening during cheat mode in the pre-2015 Golf/Jetta, but it must involve EGR. Has anyone heard the details?

  31. Todd T Says:

    VW underreporting to NHTSA? Seems opportunistic to me to pile on with this. There is not enough information about methodology, also GM and Toyota being higher and nearly equal, very interesting. There is so much at play here. Demographics is just one thing. VW has the youngest driver profile, and Toyota and GM the oldest, just to think of one.

  32. Kit Gerhart Says:

    Forget VW on the death and injury thing. Does Toyota have 5 times as many deaths and injuries per car as Honda and Nissan? I don’t think so. There are major inconsistancies in the reporting methodology here.

  33. FlooredinMI Says:

    30 – Agree EGR and those are LNT so doesn’t LNT need occasional slug of unburned HC to regen the cat’s active NOx conversion sites? Less slugs of enrichment per trip would yield better mpg, no performance effect though.

  34. Kit Gerhart Says:

    Off topic, but related to recent discussions we’ve had about car color, or lack thereof. I just ran across a 1964 Plymouth brochure, and the paint choices include three blues, two turqoises, and two tans, along with red, white, black, etc. There are 30-some interior choices, with colors including blues, turquoises, red, tan, copper, black, and white. You have to buy a Rolls-Royce to get that kind of choice now.

  35. Todd T Says:

    CR story on TDI’s with emissions active. Very interesting that the difference especially with SCA is so close. Makes one wonder why VW would do this on purpose, and makes me consider the possibility that perhaps this wasn’t intentional fraud, but more likely negligent oversight. This by no means provides and excuse!

    To the comments that the 1.8T would be too close to the TDI in fuel economy was the intentional motivation of VW: This makes no sense either. In real world data, using information there is around a 42% difference between the fuel economy of the TDI Jetta and the 1.8T Jetta. That’s a significant difference, even knocking it down 8% in worst case scenario with the emissions fully functional, it would still be 34%.

    This whole mess is a disaster for VW, but the worst part of the disaster is probably the way VW is handling it. A letter to owners went out nearly two-weeks later, that should have happened within two days, just as one example.

  36. Todd T Says:

    To the information about Mazda not bringing the diesel to the US market, brought forward in the Auto Insight live segment on this discussion: There is no information to suggest that it was due to emissions issues. In fact, everything about Mazda’s diesel would seem to indicate it should work just fine. Rather the issue was in order to make it work just fine without SCA, Mazda lowered the compression ratio to such a degree, that the efficiency of the engine had dropped the MPG to within about 4-6 MPG of the SkyActive gas engine equipped Mazda 6. So, there seemed to be no reason for it. As I recall the compression ratio of the Mazda diesel and the gasoline SkyActive engine are identical at 13.5:1

  37. C-Tech Says:

    @ #29 I believe G.A. may be correct. If I remember correctly part of the EPA testing required the engine be tested for the equivalent of 100,000 miles and that requirement may have increased. If an OEM has rigged the engine you can save money by using cheaper parts.

  38. HtG Says:

    I thought lowering the compression in a diesel would result in lower ignition temps and therefore less NOx. It’s not like I’m an SAE freemason commando though.

  39. HtG Says:

    37 I calculated roughly that it takes about ten weeks to drive 100K if you go 70mph 20hrs per day. But we don’t know if vw is going to have to re-certify the cars.

  40. Todd T Says:

    #38, precisely correct. Mazda used lower compression to handle NOx, but it comes at the cost of performance which in turn has a negative effect on MPG. The end result was that the diesel lost that 30+% percent efficiency advantage over the gasoline SkyActive engine.

  41. Kit Gerhart Says:

    35 It sounds like TDI drivers posting on are hypermiling, and 1.8t drivers are not. Both the EPA numbers and CR’s test results are much closer than 42%.

  42. Kit Gerhart Says:

    41, 35 I just checked fuelly, and what I found is that the 2.0 TDI has about 33% better reported mileage than the current 1.8t. Anyway, it’s an interesting site, and I just signed up.

    I looked up two of my cars, for which I have significant date, a 2010 Prius and a 2010 base MINI. My mileage with the Prius is very close to fuelly’s, ~47 mpg, but I do significantly better with the MINI. I got about 37 mpg for the last 10K miles with my MINI, but fuelly reports 31.6 for the same car.

  43. HtG Says:

    Sochi on BBC

    It looks like it’s already Halloween on BBC coverage. Just what are Eddie and Suzy’s stylists going for? DC will carry on

    Truly though, that’s an autocross track, not an F1 circuit.

  44. Kit Gerhart Says:

    Rosberg isn’t having much luck with has gas pedals.

  45. G.A.Branigan Says:

    @ Kit: ?

  46. Kit Gerhart Says:

    Nico Rosberg has dropped out of not one, but two Grands Prix because of problems with his drive-by-wire gas pedal, or related hardware/software.

  47. RS Says:

    Looks like Lewis has a substantial lead for the F1 driver title – and Mercedes may have the constructor’s title all sewn up too. Have not calculated it all out but I don’t think is is possible for Ferrari to catch up with only about four races remaining

  48. Kit Gerhart Says:

    I just checked the standings, and was surprised to see that Rosberg is now 3rd, 7 points behind Vettel.

    It looks like Ferrari and Mercedes would be tied in constructors points if Ferrari got first and second in the last four races, and Mercedes got zero points. Merc should be pretty safe.

  49. HtG Says:

    Merc took the title today when Kimi was penalized 30 seconds for punting Bottas off the track. It cost Ferrari the three points Merc needed to take an insurmountable lead. Second year in a row Merc clinches the Constructors in Sochi. Hard day for Rosberg; I even feel sympathy for him, the tool.(hate that guy)

  50. HtG Says:

    True F1 aficionados will be asking what special event Lewis has planned for Roscoe when the inevitable driver’s crown is secured for 2015.

  51. Kit Gerhart Says:

    Does Roscoe like expensive champagne?