Porsche hit with diesel recall by German regulator

Christoph Rauwald and Birgit Jennen
Bloomberg News

Porsche must recall almost 60,000 sport utility vehicles in Europe to fix manipulated diesel engines after the German auto industry regulator found software functions that are illegal.

Inspections of Macan and Cayenne SUVs found they contained software that could reduce emissions controls for smog-inducing nitrogen oxide, the German transport ministry said Friday in an emailed statement. Porsche, a unit of Volkswagen AG, confirmed it received notifications for the recall from the regulator this week.

The recall, for 52,831 Macan 3.0-liter V6 and 6,755 Cayenne 4.2-liter V8 vehicles, marks the latest setback in VW’s efforts to draw a line under the diesel-emissions scandal the world’s biggest carmaker has battled since September 2015. Last week, Porsche’s sister brand Audi suspended deliveries of the current A6 and A7 models, continuing a drip-feed of recalls that are a blow to the brand’s image.

Porsche, which uses diesel engines supplied by Audi, had informed German regulators in February about “irregularities” it found in emission tests. The mandatory recall was first reported by magazine Der Spiegel. Audi in March said it expected Germany’s automotive watchdog to issue more diesel recalls as it scrutinizes a pool of vehicles it sold in Europe. Audi started tests in July on some 850,000 cars.

In the statement Porsche reiterated it takes full responsibility toward affected customers, who will be contacted by dealers after engine fix has been approved by the regulator. “Independently from the technical solution Porsche continues to conduct internal tests on its vehicles and makes optimizations” based on its findings, the company said. Porsche said it continues to work closely with the relevant authorities.