EL MONTE, California — The next step in a full resolution of the Volkswagen diesel-emissions scandal hit a roadblock on Wednesday as the California Air Resources Board rejected a recall plan for 3.0-liter V6 TDI diesel vehicles, calling it "incomplete and deficient in a number of areas."
The affected vehicles are equipped with a so-called "defeat device" designed to cheat on federal emissions tests.
"VW's and Audi's submissions are incomplete, substantially deficient, and fall far short of meeting the legal requirements to return these vehicles to the claimed certified configuration," CARB said in a letter to Volkswagen Group of America.
CARB said the proposed recall plan falls short in a number of areas and fails to provide full details about the defeat devices.
California regulators also said the plan does not say how the proposed fixes would affect the engine and vehicle's overall operation or whether it is even "technically feasible."
Also, the recall plan "cannot be completed expeditiously," CARB said.
This latest development affects about 16,000 2009-'16 VW and Audi vehicles in California.
- 2009-'16 Volkswagen Touareg
- 2013-'16 Porsche Cayenne
- 2014-'16 Audi A6 Quattro
- 2014-'16 Audi A7 Quattro
- 2014-'16 Audi A8
- 2014-'16 Audi A8L
- 2014-'16 Audi Q5
- 2009-'16 Audi Q7
Volkswagen spokeswoman Jeannine Ginivan told Edmunds the CARB announcement was a "procedural step under California state law."
"We continue to work closely with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and CARB to try to secure approval of a technical resolution for our 3.0L TDI vehicles as quickly as possible," she wrote in response to a query from Edmunds.
The EPA said it continues to work in close cooperation with CARB on the diesel-emissions scandal. There are approximately 85,000 VW vehicles with 3.0-liter diesel engines in the U.S. from the 2009-'16 model years.
"We agree that VW has not presented an approvable proposed recall plan for the 3.0-liter diesel vehicles," the EPA said in a statement provided to Edmunds.
On November 19, 2015, Volkswagen officials informed EPA that the defeat device has existed in all of its U.S. 3.0-liter diesel models since 2009.
CARB's latest announcement follows the June 28, 2016 multi-billion dollar settlement that VW entered into to partially resolve U.S. Clean Air Act violations based on the sale of 2.0-liter diesel engines equipped with defeat devices.
In that settlement, VW agreed to fix or buy back cars with 2.0-liter four-cylinder diesel engines and compensate owners.
Edmunds says: Owners of VW vehicles with the 3.0-liter V6 TDI engine continue to be in a holding pattern, since no agreement has been reached on a recall plan in California or on a federal level.