The South Korean government has also started an investigation into the exhaust gas recirculation (EGR) system of Volkswagen vehicles that have been sold in the country from 2009. Industry sources say that the investigation considers the possibility of another manipulation in addition to cheating on emissions tests that Volkswagen already admitted. If Volkswagen is confirmed to have cheated on the EGR systems as well, the company may be subject to additional restrictions and punishments due to the violations of law, along with recalls.
According to the Ministry of Environment (MOE) and auto industry sources on Oct. 4, the government has undertaken a full investigation into a possible manipulation of the EGR system in the Volkswagen Tiguan and Golf, which met the Euro 5 standard, that have been sold in the domestic market. An official from the MOE said, “For Euro 5 vehicles, there are no systems called the lean NOx trap, or LNT, and the selective catalytic reduction, or SCR, which have been problems in the Euro 6 vehicles, and the relevant operating software. However, we thought there is a need of independent investigation.” Accordingly, the investigation schedule for the Euro 5 vehicles will be moved up from the earlier plan in Dec.
The Euro 5 vehicles feature only the EGR system, which reduces exhaust emissions by recycling them, without the relatively expensive SCR or LNT. Volkswagen has admitted that it discretely set up the amount of exhaust emissions of vehicles, which meet the Euro 6 standard, by featuring the software designed to conceal the cars' emissions, and used the same program in the Euro 5 vehicles. However, the company has not revealed the detailed manipulation mechanism because it is an ongoing investigation by the German government.