SACRAMENTO - The California Air Resources Board announced that Piaggio Group Americas, Inc. was fined $175,000 for violations of air quality laws regarding the required certification requirements for their Aprilia brand of motorcycles.
ARB investigators discovered a number of Aprilia brand motorcycles offered for sale in California without first receiving the official certification of compliance with the state’s emissions standards. In addition, it was also determined that various Aprilia models had been manufactured with easily adjustable calibrations that were not disclosed to the ARB during the certification process.
Variable or adjustable calibrations within the emission control system allow motorcycle dealers and owners to change how the engine runs. This may result in enhanced vehicle performance but could also significantly increase smog-forming emissions. Such adjustable calibrations are prohibited by California law if they are not disclosed to ARB prior to the vehicle’s approval for sale. They are also prohibited if the emission control systems make it possible for vehicle owners or dealerships to make adjustments outside the certified configuration.
In announcing the settlement, ARB Enforcement Chief James Ryden notes that “manufacturers not only have a basic responsibility to ensure that their vehicles meet California requirements prior to sale, but that they also take reasonable steps to ensure that dealers or owners will not be able to quickly defeat emissions controls installed on their products.” He went on to add that “building in a ready pathway to eliminate smog reducing measures is not acceptable in California certified vehicles.”
Piaggio Group Americas, Inc. fully cooperated with authorities in the investigation and resolution of this violation. Funds collected will be paid to the California Air Pollution Control Fund, established to decrease air pollution through education and the advancement and use of cleaner technologies.
Motorcycles that do not meet California's emission requirements or that are modified after their sale pose significant health threat to California residents. They create higher amounts of smog-forming pollutants, which can then exacerbate respiratory ailments and negatively affect other health conditions such as shortness of breath, headaches, birth defects, cancer or damage to internal organs.
CARB is the lead agency in California for cleaning up the air and fighting climate change to attain and maintain health-based air quality standards. Its mission is to promote and protect public health, welfare, and ecological resources through the effective reduction of air and climate pollutants while recognizing and considering effects on the economy.