Britain's favourite diesel cars breached emissions tests

 
Jessica Morris
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Volkswagen Wrestles With Diesel Emissions Scandal
Only VW used defeat devices to cheat emissions testing (Source: Getty)

All of Britain's most sought-after diesel cars exceeded the legal limit for safe levels of pollution, with emissions up to 12 times higher than those advertised by the car makers.

The "real world" tests on 37 of the UK's most popular cars came after Volkswagen admitted using defeat devices to cheat emissions tests worldwide in September.

"It can be seen that all of the results are substantially higher than this limit, with the best results being about three times higher, and the worst about 10 times higher," read the report by the Department for Transport.

Read more: Volkswagen reaches deal with US Justice Department over emissions scandal

Vauxhall Insignias, Range Rover Sport and Nissan Qashqai were found to produce 10 times the legal limit for nitrogen dioxide levels when out on the road.

Peugeot 3008, Mercedes A180, and the Renault Megane all produced up to 12 times the legal limit.

Read more: The UK's car buyers might be beginning to forgive VW

But the car makers haven't done anything illegal because they only have to meet laboratory standards.

"The vehicles tested in the UK programme showed no evidence of car manufacturers, apart from VW Group, fitting devices to defeat the approved emissions test programme," the report said.

VW previously said 1.2m of its vehicles in Britain had been fitted with defeat devices.