Supplier’s Role Shows Breadth of Volkswagen Dieselgate Deceit

The depth that Volkswagen went to conceal the issue they had with their polluting diesel engines is starting to reveal itself. Jack Ewing is the author of this article on the relationship that Volkswagen has with Robert Bosch, the powerhouse German industrial company. As Volkswagen was trying to develop an engine that met US emissions standards, they soon understood that the exercise was difficult. Volkswagen provided specifications and Bosch developed a software code that would ‘fool’ the testers when the vehicle was in the laboratory undergoing emissions testing. The Volkswagen Dieselgate scandal is still unresolved in Australia, but VW are facing heavy hitters. The ACCC is vitally involved in the Volkswagen Dieselgate matter as are two class action law firms.

“The involvement of Bosch, one of the world’s largest auto suppliers, underscores the broad nature of the diesel deception, which stretched beyond the carmaker and involved dozens if not hundreds of people for nearly a decade. Bosch, on Wednesday, agreed to pay consumers in the United States $327.5 million as compensation for its role in devising the software.” says Ewing

By JACK EWING FEB. 1, 2017

Volkswagen Dieselgate
The Bosch plant in Hatvan, Hungary, in August. Bosch was accused of altering the engine software inside Volkswagen diesels to help the vehicles evade emissions standards. Credit Akos Stiller/Bloomberg

FRANKFURT — When Volkswagen executives decided in 2006 to use software to evade emissions rules, they needed help. No one inside Volkswagen knew how to write the software.

So the company turned to one of its most trusted partners: the German supplier, Robert Bosch. Working from Volkswagen specifications, Bosch developed code that instructed computers in diesel engines to fully deploy pollution controls only when the cars were being tested in laboratories, according to lawsuits in the United States and Germany.

The code would form the basis for the so-called defeat devices, the illegal software installed on 580,000 Volkswagen, Audi and Porsche vehicles in the United States that has forced the carmaker to plead guilty to fraud and pay more than $20 billion in fines and settlements.

The involvement of Bosch, one of the world’s largest auto suppliers, underscores the broad nature of the diesel deception, which stretched beyond the carmaker and involved dozens if not hundreds of people for nearly a decade. Bosch, on Wednesday, agreed to pay consumers in the United States $327.5 million as compensation for its role in devising the software.

Bosch did not admit wrongdoing as part of the settlement with Volkswagen owners and the Federal Trade Commission, which must be approved by a judge. The supplier still faces criminal inquiries in Germany and the United States, as well as multiple civil suits by Volkswagen owners in Europe.

Bosch said Wednesday it would “continue to defend its interests in all other civil and criminal law proceedings and to cooperate comprehensively with the investigating authorities in Germany and in other countries.”

Volkswagen held powerful sway over Bosch, based on the accounts in the lawsuits. The carmaker was one of Bosch’s biggest customers, with a relationship dating from the early days of the Volkswagen Beetle in the 1930s.

Bosch appears to have been profoundly nervous about its role supplying the Volkswagen software. In June 2008, Bosch wrote a letter demanding that Volkswagen agree to pay any penalties if they were discovered using a defeat device.

Software modifications requested by Volkswagen provided “yet another path toward potential input of data as a ‘defeat device,’” said the letter, which was submitted as part of an ongoing lawsuit by a Volkswagen owner in Germany. The letter went on to quote verbatim from United States and European laws prohibiting the devices.

“A supplier has practically no possibility to say ‘no,’ or they lose business from the biggest carmaker in the world,” said Kai Borgeest, a professor at the University of Applied Sciences in Aschaffenburg, Germany, who has testified as an emissions expert at the European Parliament.

Bosch argued that the letter was misinterpreted and applied to different engines than the ones programmed to cheat, according to a court document filed Wednesday as part of the proposed settlement.

The German car industry would probably not be such a powerhouse without Bosch.

The company, which began as an electrical workshop in Stuttgart in 1888, supplied many of the electrical components, like spark plugs, that made mass-market cars possible. After World War II, Bosch was an indispensable partner as the immensely popular Beetle transformed Volkswagen into a global carmaker.

Bosch, which has 390,000 employees, also supplies an array of components such as anti-lock brakes to BMW, Daimler and virtually all of the world’s major carmakers. It would be tough to find a car that does not have some Bosch parts. Bosch, which is owned by a foundation, is one of the world’s largest privately held companies, with sales last year of 73 billion euros, or $78.5 billion.

Since early in its history, Bosch has cultivated a reputation as one of Germany’s most conscientious companies. Although Bosch manufactured military goods for the Nazis during World War II, the company’s wartime chief executive, Hans Walz, helped Jews to escape the concentration camps. Mr. Walz is recognized at the Yad Vashem holocaust remembrance center in Jerusalem.

Beginning in the 1980s, Bosch played a major role in refining diesel technology for passenger cars, providing sophisticated fuel injection systems and computers that sit under the hood and manage the operations of the engine. The technology allowed carmakers to more precisely calibrate the way fuel is burned inside the engine and to reduce the vibrations and sooty exhaust.

In 2006, when Volkswagen began planning a push to sell fuel-efficient “clean diesel” in the United States, Bosch provided an innovative fuel injection system known as common rail, as well as a newly developed onboard computer called the EDC17. Bosch advertised in trade magazines that the new engine computer “makes an important contribution to observing future exhaust gas emission limits.”

But Volkswagen developers soon found that their catalytic converters and other pollution control equipment could not meet stricter emissions standards in the United States. The equipment would wear out too quickly if it operated continuously.

At a meeting in November 2006, Volkswagen managers and engineers developed a plan for how they could use software supplied by Bosch to recognize the telltale driving pattern used by regulators when they measured emissions inside special labs, according to the lawsuits and American authorities’ case against the carmaker. The software would instruct the pollution control equipment to fully deploy only when a test was underway. It dialed back the controls under normal driving conditions, causing the car to spew more toxic nitrogen oxides than a heavy-duty diesel truck.

Volkswagen did not have anyone at the time who could make the necessary changes to the software. So the company turned to Bosch to do the programming, according to the class-action lawsuits in the United States. Volkswagen engineers provided detailed specifications to Bosch, which wrote the necessary code.

(The lawsuits with Volkswagen dealers and owners were settled last year with the carmaker. On Wednesday, Bosch settled with owners; the suit with Volkswagen dealers is pending.)

In 2008, Bosch asked Volkswagen to guarantee that it would take responsibility if the fraud were discovered, according to court documents filed as part of the lawsuit by the German owner. Volkswagen refused.

Bosch maintains that a letter seeking the guarantee has been misinterpreted and actually refers to a gasoline engine, not the diesel engines at the heart of the scandal.

Later, Bosch helped conceal the software from authorities, according to the class-action suits. It altered an onboard diagnostic system so it would not provide warnings that the emissions system was malfunctioning. The suits also said Bosch helped delete text from software documentation that might have raised suspicion.

“VW and Bosch continued over the next few years to refine the defeat device,” one of those lawsuits said. “This was a lengthy and complicated process.”

The sheer amount of work required to install the software in Volkswagen vehicles suggests that a large number of people were involved. The software had to be altered for each model and option package. There are 11 million tainted diesel engines in more than 30 Volkswagen, Audi, Porsche, Seat and Skoda models, which were available around the world in dozens of variations.

Two companies, Continental and Delphi Automotive, supplied the engine computers for Volkswagen cars with smaller motors that were not sold in the United States. Continental said it was not aware its computers were being used for illegal purposes. Delphi said in a statement that the software in its engine computers was supplied by customers.

Knowledge of Bosch’s involvement reached to the top, the class-action lawsuits said. In May 2014, shortly after a study by researchers at West Virginia University uncovered discrepancies in Volkswagen diesel emissions, Volkmar Denner, the Bosch chief executive, took part in a meeting in Wolfsburg with Martin Winterkorn, the carmaker’s chief executive.

The atmosphere inside Volkswagen at the time was tense. Executives feared the West Virginia study would alert regulators to the deception. At that meeting, one of the items on the agenda was the “acoustic function,” according to company documents quoted in the lawsuits. That was an internal code name for the defeat device.

Bosch argued that there was a general discussion about diesel engine acoustics at the meeting, but no talk of a defeat device, according to a court document filed Wednesday.

Mr. Denner has not responded directly to the allegations in the lawsuits. Mr. Winterkorn told a committee in the German Parliament on Jan. 19 that he never heard the term “defeat device” until shortly before the wrongdoing came to light in September 2015.

Mr. Denner said Wednesday that Bosch agreed to the settlement so it could focus on the transformation sweeping the auto industry. German carmakers are depending on Bosch to help them keep pace with new technologies, like self-driving and battery-powered cars.

“We wish to devote our attention and our resources to the transition in mobility,” Mr. Denner said in a statement.

Hi, Bob Aldons from Car Business here. Car Business is a multi-dimensional car company involved in diverse areas of the automotive industry in Australia. Diversity allows us to cater to the needs of our customers, whether retail, dealer or wholesale.

We are involved in the following:

  • New Car Brokerage
  • Quality Used Cars
  • Vehicle Finance and Insurance
  • Genuine Spare Parts for Jeep, Chrysler, Dodge, Fiat, Alfa Romeo, Isuzu Ute & Volkswagen
  • Vehicle Protection Products such as paint and Interior protection, Electronic Rustproofing and Window Tint
  • Local Area Marketing for Google My Business
  • Training and Development for sales people, sales managers as well as service and parts managers.

What’s Car Business all about?

Car Business is a multi-dimensional automotive company that aims to help you to buy your new car for a better price than you can do on your own. Based on the Redcliffe Peninsula about 15 minutes from Brisbane Airport and 30 minutes from the Brisbane CBD, Car Business is located in an area that allows us to pick and choose from Brisbane’s finest new cars for sale.

The ‘go to’ Brisbane car buying agents, Car Business, is so much better than a car broker – first and foremost, Car Business is an experienced Car Buyer’s Advocacy service. Our experienced staff will stand alongside you and act on your behalf to help you buy your new car at a better price than you can directly through new car dealers.

My goal with Car Business is to provide timely and informative articles on everything to do with cars – used car purchase, new car sales, car service, car finance, car insurance, aftermarket car protection products.

Above anything else, Car Business is a company that provides current automotive advice for car owners who do not have access to knowledgeable auto industry friends. To those of you without someone to talk to, I am your expert – the car guy.

I have been in the automotive industry since 1978 – covering all aspects that consumers need advice. I’ve been called many things in my time – The Car Professor, The Car Doctor, and recently the Car Guy, but the bottom line is that I know a lot about this industry. Whenever someone needs some advice – they call me.

In general terms my car advice is free – it is just something I like to do, and my goal is to give back to the community that has treated me so well.

Good quality, Guaranteed Used Cars

I have access to good quality vehicles – you can see my current stock by clicking through to my own website for the cars that I have in stock.  I am also able to search out that particular car that you are finding difficult to find. With a great dealer community that I have dealt with for many years, and these cars do not even hit the websites. I specialize in South East Queensland but in some cases, can look after interstate customers

Other areas that I specialize in are relatively widespread.

Genuine Spare Parts, Merchandise, and Other Cool Stuff is an online spare parts business specializing in Chrysler, Jeep, Dodge, Fiat, Alfa Romeo, Isuzu Ute and Volkswagen. So if you are looking for anything from crash parts, electrical components, wheels, t-shirts or anything else, let me assist you with that search.  You can rely on genuine spares to procure parts at better than trade price and certainly better than you can buy in Australia. My prices are reduced by about 30% on what you would expect to pay here in Australia

Car Business Protects Your Car

Car Business is a local agent for Williams Paint and Interior ProtectionAutoGard and CleanGard, SunX window tinting.

Don’t get ripped off by car dealers wanting to make a huge profit – our window tinting prices start from $175 up to $450 for cars that dealers want to charge $750 for.

Car Finance and Car Insurance

My finance and insurance franchise, 1800Approved Finance, will help you get finance for your car at rates much lower than a dealer will offer. For a homeowner, we are talking from 4.99%. Your bank will not even offer you that.

It’s My Opinion – Cars, Auto Industry

If you are interested in reading quality information about new car releases, forthcoming models and just about anything else to do with the car business, click over to my blog –

You will find wide-ranging comment about the car industry and car people. I do not hold back on my comments – like it or not; my opinions are just that – opinions.

In closing, if you want to connect with me here’s how

Car Business and Bob Aldons Contact Info

Phone:          International           +61 418 748 498

Local                          0418 748 498


Email:                        in**@ca*********.au

Visit:              226 Anzac Avenue

Kippa-Ring Q 4021


In closing, my passion is cars, car buyers, car dealers, but just about anything to do with cars. However, you need to do me one favour….

Please drive carefully


Warm regards

Bob Aldons


#carbusiness #thecarguy #bobaldons #carbrokers #carbuyersadvocate #discountnewcars #carbuyingservice #bestcarprice #racq #nrma #racv #caradvice #mistakesthatcarbuyersmake

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Blog Categories

Contact Car Business

Contact Car Business