The European Commission has formally accused BMW, VW, and Daimler of colluding to impede the rollout of emissions limiting technology. These companies—whose car brands include Mercedes, Audi, Volkswagen, Porsche, and BMW—are said to have limited and delayed the use of tech that would have reduced the emissions of diesel and petrol cars.
Regulators accused the carmakers of colluding at their annual “circle of five” technical meetings, which are attended by BMW, Daimler, Volkswagen and its subsidiary brands Audi and Porsche.
The Commission claimed that one of the technologies affected by the scheme would have reduced harmful nitrogen oxide emissions from diesel cars.
The Statement of Objections issued Friday, April 5, comes a year and a half after EU authorities first raided the offices of the three companies over reports of possible collusion.
The EU’s Competition Commissioner, Margrethe Vestager, said that while collaboration to improve products is allowed, “EU competition rules do not allow [companies] to collude on exactly the opposite: not to improve their products, not to compete on quality.”
With this statement of objections now released, BMW, VW, and Daimler will have a chance to review the European Commission’s findings and respond to them before the authority comes to a final decision.