BMW, VW fined over emissions collusion

BMW, VW fined over emissions collusion
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The European Commission on Thursday fined German automakers Volkswagen and BMW over collusion to curb the use of emission cleaning technology, Reuters reported.

In a news conference, European Union antitrust chief Margrethe Vestager said the automakers have the technology to reduce their harmful emissions but refused to do so. 

Vestager said this was the first time that European authorities have enforced rules on companies “whose purpose was to restrict the use of novel technology."

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"So today's decision is about how legitimate technical cooperation went wrong. And we do not tolerate it when companies collude," Vestager said, according to Reuters.

Volkswagen, makers of Audis and Porsche, said in response that it's considering taking legal action against the fine imposed by the European Commission.

"The Commission is entering new judicial territory, because it is treating technical cooperation for the first time as an antitrust violation," Volkswagen said in a statement.

The EU charges stem from a 2019 report by the commission. BMW at the time said it has been cleared of suspicions using “defeat devices to cheat on their emission tests," Reuters reported.

The fine announced on Thursday is separate from the earlier diesel emissions scandal involving European carmarkers.