South Africa regulators to probe local VW unit after emissions scandal

CAPE TOWN (Reuters) - South African regulators are investigating Volkswagen's local business to see if cars sold there also rigged carbon emissions data, an official said on Monday. The National Regulator for Compulsory Specifications (NRCS), which ensures vehicles comply with the necessary standards, including emissions, before being sold in the South African market, says on its website that all VW cars had met the requirements. Volkswagen, the world's biggest carmaker, has admitted using software known as a defeat device to ensure it passed U.S. testing for nitrogen oxides and said 11 million of its cars had been fitted with it. The NRCS said it could recall cars if VW was found not to have complied with local emissions measures. "Should we find out that the tests that were provided to us were non-compliant, that's when the sanctioning process will have to start," said Temba Kaula, acting general manager of the automotive sector at the NRCS. Kaula said they hoped to conclude the investigation within two to three months. Matt Gennrich, spokesman for VW South Africa, said the firm was in contact with regulators. "There is obviously a full investigation going on internally, and that includes to see how many cars are involved in each market, including South Africa, and once that investigation is complete we will co-operate with authorities," he said. Volkswagen was the second most popular car brand in South Africa after Toyota, selling 8,472 out of 51,055 units in the entire market during August, data from the National Association of Automobile Manufacturers of South Africa showed.

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