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Korean gov't probes BMW, Ford, Mercedes-Benz for possible emissions rigging

[THE INVESTOR] South Korea’s Ministry of Environment has initiated an inquiry against 23 imported carmakers to review the possibility of their having manipulated registration documents, in an effort to curb another Volkswagen scandal.

A ministry official on Aug. 18 said it requested the state-run National Institute of Environmental Research conduct examinations of over 100 different models equipped with Euro 6-engines sold by carmakers such as Mercedes-Benz, BMW and Ford. It will check whether these brands cheated on emissions and noise level tests to gain eligibility to sell here, like Audi Volkswagen Korea. 



The investigation is expected to take two to three months. Authorities will compare the registration documents of the models submitted by the carmaker to the Korean government with the original vehicle certification issued by the headquarters to check if the specifications match. Based on an initial investigation, the government plans to extend the probe further.

Earlier, the Ministry of Environment revoked the certification of 80 models of Audi, Volkswagen and Bentley vehicles for cheating on emissions and noise level tests. The ministry also banned them from being sold here, along with issuing a hefty fine of 17.8 billion won (US$16.1 million).

By Ahn Sung-mi (sahn@heraldcorp.com)

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