Countries all over the world are taking emissions levels more seriously than ever, and automakers are being taken to task if they don’t comply with agreed upon environmental laws. Just ask Volkswagen. According to Automotive News Europe, the Swiss government has halted registrations for new Porsche Cayennes and Macans powered by 3.0- and 4.2-liter diesel engines, respectively. It’s also not just Porsche products. The Mercedes-Benz Vito vans with the 1.6-liter diesel engine are also banned. Authorities believe those SUVs’ engines have faulty emissions levels.
Starting Friday, August 17, vehicles imported with those specific engines cannot be registered into the system by owners. But what if owners have already registered the affected vehicles in Switzerland? What do they do? They may continue to be driven on a normal basis, however, they must be retrofitted by the automakers in order to meet emissions standards. Apparently, Daimler, parent company of Mercedes-Benz, was already well aware of the Vito’s diesel problems, so it stopped exporting the vehicle to Switzerland last spring following a previous recall by German authorities. The faulty diesel emissions revelations seem to keep on coming.
Do diesels have a future in Europe, a market they once dominated? Some automaker executives believe they do, but the reality is this: diesel is dead in the long-term. The technology’s reputation has been permanently tarnished and if authorities don’t ban them for questionable emissions, then the market will ultimately finish the job. Consumers will simply stop buying them and move on to some new technology.