Robin Roberts reports.
After the Volkswagen emissions scandal, MPs are looking into current testing and its relationship to other parts of Europe.
It could result in a much tougher test, possibly based around the strict United States system which one leading international engineer wants to see harmonized across Europe.
The VW deceit has affected about 1.2 Million models in the UK and indirectly means the Government has lost millions in tax revenue while owners have been tricked into paying more than they should have for fuel consumed.
In the US, owners will get a debit card to offset their losses but this is unlikely in UK and Europe.
The Government has already said it will not seek to recover lost revenue from vehicle keepers or users but the situation is expected to impact on used car values over time.
Parliament’s transport committee will seek evidence on the effectiveness of current arrangements, which involve the testing of aspects such as performance, noise and emissions by national agencies to see if they meet EU standards.
Pressure is mounting on the EU to create an independent, Europewide body with oversight powers over type approval tests. Europe lacks an EU-wide oversight system for vehicle testing similar to the U.S. government’s Environmental Protection Agency but it’s left to individual countries to introduce their own laboratory tests.
Under the current system, the EU’s 28 nations have the power to approve vehicles. When a vehicle is approved in one country, it can be sold across the EU.
This allows automakers to “shop” for the best deal from agencies across Europe, the Brussels-based lobby group Transport & Environment says.
A major complaint in recent months has been the difference between the level of emissions detected during laboratory testing and “real-world” driving.
Since the Volkswagen scandal broke towards the end of September the issue has spread from the group’s diesel cars to a number of petrol models using specific engines and tuning and some EU countries have started retesting all models sold in their borders to re-establish if any results could have been falsified.