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VW Scandal

To say that I am frustrated, angry, betrayed or flabbergasted by the news that VW created software to defeat emissions testing would be an understatement.

When I walked in to my local auto repair shop last week to have a nail removed from my tire, they dove right in – “Isn’t your VW one of those diesels?” “Yeah…” (I know them pretty well, so there were grins on their faces as they asked me)

So, yes, I’ve spent nearly the last 12 years being generally insufferable with friends and neighbors about how everyone should be driving a TDI because: less fuel, cleaner, and fun to drive.

And the “cleaner” tag relied on the new engines, my ’03 Golf TDI (RIP) was definitely only cleaner in some narrow definitions, but based on the the info published by VW and the EPA, I thought as of my ’11 Jetta Sportwagen, the “cleaner” label could apply as well.

Being a consumer requires information, one needs to be able to make decisions based on facts about a purchase. Short of letting me actually test the emissions of every vehicle I might purchase, we have to rely the manufacturers and governments to give us that information.

And this isn’t a state problem, it’s not even a federal problem. We need to align these standards globablly so there is no incentive to cheat in one locality or another. The comprehensive testing needed is expensive, but why not share that cost and certify emissions once for the global market?

It’s a good argument for open source software as well. Which manufacturer is willing to open up the source that literally drives the cars? This isn’t going to only be a problem of further fouling our environment, but one of personal safety every time you enter a car.

I WAS DRIVING 70 mph on the edge of downtown St. Louis when the exploit began to take hold.

Though I hadn’t touched the dashboard, the vents in the Jeep Cherokee started blasting cold air at the maximum setting, chilling the sweat on my back through the in-seat climate control system. Next the radio switched to the local hip hop station and began blaring Skee-lo at full volume. I spun the control knob left and hit the power button, to no avail. Then the windshield wipers turned on, and wiper fluid blurred the glass.

This is reality, today.

So, I’m not planning on selling the car any time soon (who knows what it is worth on the market now, anyways) but the gesture that VW would have to make to their diesel drivers would have to be equally as monumental as their lies and deception for me to even consider another one.


Categories: General.

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