As we told you yesterday, a settlement in Fiat Chrysler’s diesel quandary could come any day. Today, we’re telling you it could come, well, today.
According to sources who spoke to the New York Times, FCA plans to settle a 2017 Justice Department lawsuit by making a collection of 104,000 trucks and SUVs greener, while adding an average of $2,500 to owners’ wallets.
Despite the automaker setting aside more than $800 million for the settlement, the sources claim it’ll only need to pay out about $650 million to free itself from the suit. The rest should cover the recall of affected vehicles. The report states that some $305 million will go towards making the company straight with the federal and California governments, with $260 million or more distributed to owners of the 2014-2016 Ram 1500 and Jeep Grand Cherokee EcoDiesels.
Civil penalties amount to $72 million, with another $6 million set aside to deal with other claims, the report states. FCA won’t admit guilt, the sources claim, nor will the settlement include an EPA finding of wrongdoing.
On average, owners should receive about $2,500. Because the company’s fix involves software only, owners shouldn’t expect a change in power or fuel economy from the 3.0-liter V6 engines. The company gained approval to begin selling EcoDiesels, now with a compliant engine, in the summer of 2017, but the fuel-sipping variants disappeared for the 2019 model year. A second-generation engine is in the works to compete with new light-duty diesels from Ford and General Motors.
[Image: Fiat Chrysler Automobiles]