French prosecutors have confirmed a formal investigation into Fiat Chrysler has been opened over allegations the car maker cheated in diesel emissions tests.
“I can confirm that a judicial investigation has been opened into aggravated cheating,” a judicial source told Reuters.
The investigation was opened on March 15 on advice from the finance ministry’s consumer affairs and anti-fraud body, DGCCRF.
A spokesman for Fiat told Reuters the company took note of the investigation and told Reuters its diesel vehicles fully comply with emission regulations, as confirmed by the Italian Transport Ministry.
The investigation comes as several European countries found on-road nitrogen oxide emissions more than 10 times above regulatory limits for some GM, Renault and Fiat Chrysler diesel vehicles after launching their own tests. Widespread use of defeat devices was also noted.
The French test programme launched by environment minister Segolene Royal has led to Volkswagen, Renault Fiat Chrysler and PSA Group all being referred on to prosecutors.
Fiat Chrysler vehicles were among those that recorded the highest toxic nitrogen emissions.
In the UK, the government is testing the emissions of Fiat Chrysler’s Jeep Grand Cherokee, according to the BBC.
The UK Department for Transport has also asked for details of an investigation the United States Environmental Protection Agency conducted into Fiat Chrysler’s diesel emissions software.