More specifically, the suit alleges Ford and Bosch put so-called "defeat devices" in some of Ford's Super Duty diesel trucks, which the suit says allows the vehicles to pollute at "up to 50 times legal limits".
The Stuttgart prosecutors launched an investigation over Bosch's emissions dealings with Volkswagen (VW) in 2015 when VW's diesel test-cheating scandal in the United States broke, and in 2017 in relation to alleged emissions irregularities at Daimler. The plaintiffs are accusing Ford of rigging the engines to beat emissions tests which, sadly, is a story we've heard over and over as automakers like Volkswagen and Fiat Chrysler battled their own allegations, in the past two years, of similar practices. A defeat device is software created to fool emissions tests by allowing a vehicle to boost its performance, but pollute substantially more in real-world driving.
Ford stated that all of its vehicles abide by all U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and California Air Resources Board (CARB) emissions regulations.
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Erik Gordon, a specialist in entrepreneurship and technology at the University of Michigan's Ross School of Business, stated that if real, the "allegations would expose Ford to the threat of billion-dollar liabilities and punch a hole in its efforts to place itself as an automobile technology leader". The lawsuit is naming both Ford and supplier Robert Bosch GmbH of Germany as defendants.
According to legal firm Hagens Berman's investigation, Ford manipulated the emissions system in affected F-250 and F-350 Super Duty trucks, in violation of federal requirements.
In a separate written statement, a Bosch spokesperson told Bloomberg, "Bosch takes the allegations of manipulation of the diesel software very seriously".