LAS VEGAS -- Robert Bosch, a key supplier of diesel components to Volkswagen, has gone public with a vigorous defense of the technology, even as VW remains embroiled in a dispute with U.S. regulators over the steps it must take to fix its diesel emissions systems.
Werner Struth, Bosch's U.S. chairman, recently told Automotive News that urea-based catalytic converters can meet all U.S. diesel standards and that diesels are needed to help cut carbon dioxide emissions in the United States and Europe.
"We are definitely convinced that [the emissions systems] will work," Struth said this month at the Consumer Electronics Show here. The emissions "targets in Europe can be achieved only with the help of diesel engines, and the same is true in the United States."
Struth said American diesel owners typically are repeat customers. "Guys who buy diesels are very loyal customers," he noted. "They love the diesel engine. It has great torque and great fuel economy. They know what they have."
With estimated global original-equipment parts sales of $44.24 billion in 2014, according to the Automotive News list of top suppliers, Bosch is the world's biggest automotive supplier. The company is a major producer of diesel fuel systems and engine control units.
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has asked Bosch whether it knew that VW had tampered with the software of Bosch-produced engine control units used in 600,000 vehicles sold in the United States.