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Report: Fiat Chrysler nears emissions settlement with US Justice Department

Fiat Chrysler Automobiles NV is nearing a settlement with the U.S. Justice Department over claims that the carmaker manipulated diesel emission tests of about 104,000 vehicles, Reuters reported Jan. 9, citing a person briefed on the matter.

The source told the news outlet that the settlement, which reportedly could be disclosed as early as this week, could include "substantial" civil fines and would likely require the company to offset excess diesel emissions.

In February 2018, the department sent a settlement offer to lawyers of the carmaker, requiring the company to offset excess pollution and prevent excess emissions in the future.

Fiat Chrysler has previously denied attempting to create software to cheat emissions rules. According to emails uncovered in a U.S. federal court hearing last year, Fiat Chrysler's suppliers knew of the company's alleged use of emissions cheating software in 2010, and that the company wanted to use it to activate controls to pass evaluations.

In its third quarter results for 2018, the carmaker disclosed that it set aside €713 million to cover costs related to its diesel emissions case in the U.S.

Reuters said the U.S. SEC and a group of U.S. state attorneys general have also been looking into the excess emissions investigation.

Fiat Chrysler and the Justice Department declined to comment on the matter, Reuters said.