RAM 1500 and Jeep Grand Cherokee EcoDiesel Emissions Issues

Discussion in 'Diesel powered automobiles' started by xcel, Jan 12, 2017.

  1. xcel

    xcel PZEV, there's nothing like it :) Staff Member

    [​IMG] Another turbo diesel in trouble…

    [​IMG]Wayne Gerdes – CleanMPG – Jan. 12, 2016

    2017 RAM 1500 Tradesman RWD with the 8’ bed with the 3.0L EcoDiesel - $32,485 to start including the $1,320 D&H charge. Just over $25k with discounts.


    The EPA has targeted FCA as the next Turbo Diesel emissions violator. In its release today, the EPA stated FCA has allegedly installed and failed to disclose that software installed increases air pollution from its 3.0L EcoDiesel.

    This morning the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) issued a notice of violation to FCA for alleged violations of the Clean Air Act for installing and failing to disclose engine management software in light-duty model year 2014, 2015 and 2016 Jeep Grand Cherokees and Dodge Ram 1500 trucks with 3.0L turbo diesel engines sold in the United States. The undisclosed software results in increased emissions of nitrogen oxides (NOx) from the vehicles. The allegations cover roughly 104,000 vehicles. EPA is working in coordination with the California Air Resources Board (CARB), which has also issued a notice of violation to FCA. EPA and CARB have both initiated investigations based on FCA’s alleged actions.

    Cynthia Giles, Assistant Administrator for EPA’s Office of Enforcement and Compliance Assurance:
    The Clean Air Act requires vehicle manufacturers to demonstrate to EPA through a certification process that their products meet applicable federal emission standards to control air pollution. As part of the certification process, automakers are required to disclose and explain any software, known as auxiliary emission control devices that can alter how a vehicle emits air pollution. FCA did not disclose the existence of certain auxiliary emission control devices to EPA in its applications for certificates of conformity for model year 2014, 2015 and 2016 Jeep Grand Cherokees and Dodge Ram 1500 trucks, despite knowing that disclosure was mandatory. By failing to disclose this software and then selling vehicles that contained it, FCA violated provisions within the Clean Air Act.

    FCA may be liable for civil penalties and injunctive relief for the violations alleged in the NOV. EPA is also investigating whether the auxiliary emission control devices constitute “defeat devices,” which are illegal.

    In September of 2015, EPA instituted and expanded testing program to screen for defeat devices on light duty vehicles. This testing revealed that the FCA vehicle models in question produce increased NOx emissions under conditions that would be encountered in normal operation and use. As part of the investigation, EPA has found at least eight undisclosed pieces of software that can alter how a vehicle emits air pollution.

    RAM 1500 Tradesman with the 3.0L EcoDiesel

    In Sedona, AZ.​

    FCAs Response

    The company stated they were disappointed that the EPA has chosen to issue a notice of violation with respect to the emissions control technology employed in the company’s 2014-16 model year light duty 3.0L turbo diesel engines.

    FCA intends to work with the incoming administration to present its case and resolve this matter fairly and equitably and to assure the EPA and FCA US customers that the company’s diesel-powered vehicles meet all applicable regulatory requirements.

    FCA US diesel engines are equipped with state-of-the-art emission control systems hardware, including advanced combustion control, Exhaust Gas Recirculation (EGR), a Diesel Oxidation Catalyst (DOC), and a Selective Catalytic Reduction (SCR) system. Every auto manufacturer must employ similar strategies to control tailpipe emissions in order to balance EPA’s regulatory requirements for low nitrogen oxide (NOx) emissions and requirements for engine durability and performance, safety and fuel efficiency. FCA believes that its emission control systems meet the applicable requirements!

    FCA stated they have spent months providing voluminous information in response to requests from EPA and CARB authorities and has sought to explain its emissions control technology to EPA representatives. FCA US has proposed a number of actions to address EPA’s concerns, including developing extensive software changes to our emissions control strategies that could be implemented in these vehicles immediately to further improve emissions performance.

    FCA US looks forward to the opportunity to meet with the EPA’s enforcement division and representatives of the new administration to demonstrate that FCA US’s emissions control strategies are properly justified and thus are not “defeat devices” under applicable regulations and to resolve this matter expeditiously.

    RAM 1500 Tradesman with the 3.0L EcoDiesel

    There is no better work truck available. PERIOD!​

    My take? SOB, here we go again. It looks like minor dynamic emissions control SW additions, not an outright defeat once of the Dyno. Hopefully we will hear more soon. In the meantime, this really could be the death of the diesel in light duty vehicles. CAFÉ requirements continue to get stricter while Ford, GM and Mazda are currently in the process of releasing their own 2.0L, 2.2L, and 3.0L TDs to bring about the 40 to 45 percent thermodynamically efficient engines to the public. What a G** Damned F***ing mess!!! :(
    TheFordFamily, ALS and BillLin like this.
  2. priusCpilot

    priusCpilot George

    Diesel Gate 2017! Italian Edition!
    xcel and BillLin like this.
  3. thunderstruck

    thunderstruck Super Moderator

    Chevy will be next with the Cruze. Since Trump says global warming is a hoax, why doesn't he tell the EPA to butt out and leave FCA alone?
    TheFordFamily, xcel and BillLin like this.
  4. EdwinTheMagnificent

    EdwinTheMagnificent Legend In His Mind

    Thanks a lot, Volkswagen.
    Trollbait and xcel like this.
  5. Carcus

    Carcus Well-Known Member

    Europe has a smog problem because they went after CO2 .... at all costs. Ushering in a bunch of (supposedly) low CO2 vehicles but high NOx (small diesels) that ended up smoking and choking up their cities.

    Personally, I'd prefer the EPA prioritize NOx over CO2. I don't want "hey, don't go outside today" warnings to become common place here in the states.

    TheFordFamily, kbergene, Jay and 2 others like this.
  6. PaleMelanesian

    PaleMelanesian Beat the System Staff Member

    My brother in law works at the local Chrysler dealer as a mechanic. He tells me those engines are horribly unreliable. There's a waiting list for engine replacements, some on their 2nd or 3rd engine already.

    I'll watch and see what Ford comes out with in their promised F150 diesel.
    xcel likes this.
  7. seftonm

    seftonm Veteran Staff Member

    I've heard the same thing. I think I'd prefer a Ford diesel over an Italian one that's been adapted for North American standards.
    wxman, TheFordFamily and xcel like this.
  8. wxman

    wxman Well-Known Member

    According to the EPA press release, this issue with undeclared AECDs was discovered during the extensive additional testing that diesel vehicles in the U.S. are now subject to since the VW scandal.

    At least this should ensure that any diesel vehicle certified since the VW scandal truly meets the regulatory emission requirements in "commonly-encountered" driving scenarios and ambient conditions.
    dr61, xcel, seftonm and 2 others like this.
  9. Jay

    Jay Well-Known Member

    FCA's denials don't assure me because VW categorically denied any such cheating software for years before they finally confessed. If it turns out that FCA diesels cheat, I think the EPA and DOJ has to be hard on them. Mazda, Honda, Hyundai and others make very advanced diesels that Americans would love to buy and that they'd love to sell, but they won't do it because they know they can't meet the emissions without severe performance/economy penalties. The cheaters are poaching sales away from their more scrupulous competitors.
    Trollbait, dr61, xcel and 2 others like this.
  10. alster

    alster Well-Known Member

    With todays gasoline fueled efficient engines is there any benefit going to diesel engines when diesel fuel, in most cases, is 15-30 cents more a gallon than 87 regular octane gas? Diesel engines cost more, maybe $1500-3000 premium. It seems like you may never make it financial feasible in the diesel vehicles lifetime over a gasoline powered engine in the same vehicle.

    Also if the EPA, now with the Trump Administration, can dump the Ethanol Mandate in gasoline, pure 87 octane gasoline will perhaps increase overall fuel economy 3-5% . Remember #2 Diesel fuel, low sulfur, has no added ethanol. Lets not also forget the added diesel expense with the addition of 5 gallons or so of Urea added to the extra tank every 7,000-10,000 miles or so. Urea cost needs to be considered as well. Seems like more things to go wrong with today's diesel engines, as there is a lot more technology on board, than the diesel engines in the past.

    Maybe I'm off target here but in today's world I really don't see the savings benefit with diesel engines and maybe somebody on this forum can show us the real savings, with time of course, over the same vehicle with a gasoline engine.
    Last edited: Jan 14, 2017
    Carcus likes this.
  11. seftonm

    seftonm Veteran Staff Member

    I can't speak for resale values on trucks, but the TDI was a $2500 option in my car. The month before the cheating scandal hit, black book values listed it as being worth an extra $4000 over the same gas model. The resale value of the diesel model often makes the payback period around 5 years, even if the vehicle is never driven.
    wxman and xcel like this.
  12. xcel

    xcel PZEV, there's nothing like it :) Staff Member

    Hi All:

    Some more on the FCA Turbo Diesel in the RAM 1500 and Jeep Grand Cherokee. According to the people I spoke with including the boss, Sergio, the EPA is full of it! They were pulling some far off the cycle testing with keyed shut downs, keyed start ups, full throttle and full braking in order to get the emissions profile to break the maximums. The engine and emissions tuners have to try and accommodate all kinds scenarios but they cannot cover this kind of crap and neither can anyone else no matter if it is a diesel or a gas engine! Remember the particulate issue from the 3.5L EcoBoost?

    The EPA still lists the EcoDiesel as non-compliant and RAM cannot sell them until this is cleared up but from the discussion, the EPA went way beyond their testing norms to get the EcoDiesel to fail just to say it did vs. what they did not catch VW doing for over 7 years.

    A hatchet job plain and simple. :(

  13. RedylC94

    RedylC94 Well-Known Member

    "far off cycle testing" ?? How can that be? Don't diesels have to be tested for emissions compliance through rigidly prescribed drive cycles, same as for gasoline-powered vehicles?
    xcel likes this.
  14. xcel

    xcel PZEV, there's nothing like it :) Staff Member

    Hi RedylC94:

    They are all run under strict cycles. Unless the EPA or CARB wants to find a cheat. As was the case for the VW TDI. But the FCA 3.0L TD does not have a cheat, it just misses the targets under the extreme circumstances as most any vehicle - gas or diesel - would.

    There are a lot of FCA people pissed at the EPA for going way beyond their mandates on this one.

    wxman and BillLin like this.
  15. Carcus

    Carcus Well-Known Member

    Sounds like someone at the EPA is trying to eliminate diesels as light duty vehicles.

    We already know CARB (Mary Nichols) is trying to eliminate diesel AND gasoline light duty vehicles.... so I guess this shouldn't come as a complete surprise.

    /... be careful what you wish for
    BillLin and xcel like this.
  16. xcel

    xcel PZEV, there's nothing like it :) Staff Member

    BillLin likes this.

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