In spite of an overall slowdown in EV demand as of late, Ford remains committed to transitioning its entire European passenger vehicle lineup to all-electric vehicles by 2030 or sooner, as we’ve seen from the automaker’s actions in the UK recently. There, Ford has been quick to criticize efforts to weaken or push back that country’s proposed zero-emissions vehicle mandate, and is one of a handful of automakers calling for even more stringent standards in that regard – not softer ones. Now, however, Ford is facing allegations that it – along with a handful of other automakers – cheated emissions standards in the UK in the past.
Ford will stand trial and address these allegations, which claim that Ford used diesel engines that emitted harmful levels of toxic NOx gases and also skirted both European and UK-based regulatory standards. Lawmakers claim that these companies used emissions defeat devices to conceal that fact. As such, a court order was handed down containing Group Litigation Orders (GLOs) – which allow similar claims to be heard as one case.
Ford and Mercedes-Benz will be the first to head to court and address these allegations, but there are six other automakers named in the case as well – Nissan Renault, Volvo, Jaguar Land Rover, Vauxhall, Citroen, and Peugeot.
“The High Court’s decision makes it very clear that those companies that cheated emissions tests will have to answer for it,” said Tom Goodhead, CEO and Managing Partner at the law firm Pogust Goodhead. “The level of cynicism involved in this scandal is incredible. Companies misled their customers, authorities, and the public, who bought their cars and their lies and breathed in the toxic pollution their vehicles secretly pumped out. This is a public health and consumer scandal. We’re delighted that our clients are one step closer to achieving justice. Rather than string the process out, costing themselves and their shareholders unnecessary pain, companies facing legal action should see the writing on the wall and settle their cases as soon as possible.”