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FTFinancial Times

VW closes in on emissions fix for US

Re-designed catalytic converter and hardware would fix 430,000 cars. Volkswagen has devised a new catalytic converter that could fix the majority of the cars in the US affected by the diesel emissions scandal. The German carmaker is trying to find a way to repair almost 600,000 cars in the US affected by so-called defeat devices which VW admitted installing to dupe test laboratories into thinking that its vehicles emitted fewer pollutants. The cheat software affects more than 11m cars worldwide.

UK manufacturing sector in recession

UK manufacturers suffered a further setback in November last year, with weak global demand and a strong exchange rate hitting industrial production, cancelling out improvements earlier in the autumn. Official figures published on Tuesday showed the manufacturing sector in recession with output 0.4 per cent lower in November than in October and 1.2 per cent lower than a year earlier.

Volkswagen pledges to ‘rebuild trust’ in UK, but will not pay out

Volkswagen has promised to “regain the trust” of its British customers but will not pay any compensation to the 1.2m motorists in the UK affected by its attempts to rig diesel emissions tests. In September, the German carmaker admitted to fitting almost half a million cars in the US with “defeat devices” that duped regulators into thinking the vehicles were less polluting. Subsequently, VW declared that 11m vehicles worldwide were affected, including almost 1.2m in the UK.

UK employer group CBI urges changes to apprenticeship levy

The CBI head has written privately to the business secretary to warn that the apprenticeship levy could impose huge costs on employers without any improvement in the training they provide. After arguing against the levy for months — companies see it as part of a package of onerous new impositions — the employers’ organisation has bowed to the inevitability of the changes.

Volkswagen recall plans rejected by US regulators

US regulators have rejected Volkswagen’s recall plan for diesel cars fitted with emissions “cheat” devices.

The California Air Resources Board said the proposals did “not adequately address overall impacts on vehicle performance, emissions and safety”. The board also said the proposed fix was not fast enough.

It said it would continue its investigation as well as talks with VW to find a suitable solution.

Google’s self-drive cars had to be stopped from crashing

Google drivers had to intervene to stop its self-driving cars from crashing on California’s roads 13 times between September 2014 and November 2015. The disclosure follows a local regulator’s demand for the information.

Six other car tech companies also revealed data about autonomous-driving safety incidents of their own. Google wants to build cars without manual controls, but California-based Consumer Watchdog now says the company’s own data undermines its case.

The Independent

Jaguar Land Rover is the best place to work in the UK

Jaguar Land Rover is the best employer in the UK, according to a Bloomberg survey.

The luxury carmaker has been named the best place to work in the UK, followed by AstraZeneca, a pharmaceutical giant, and Harrods, the department store. Statista conducted the poll of 400 firms across 25 industries for Bloomberg.

Jaguar scored a top score of 8.56 on Bloombergs’s index of British employers – where 0 means “I wouldn’t recommend my employer under any circumstances” and 10 means “I would definitely recommend my employer.”

The Daily Express

Brexit boost as Toyota vow to remain in UK exposes ‘lies’ of Europhiles

BREXIT campaigners have today hailed Toyota’s vow to remain in the UK even if Britons vote to leave the EU – with the car giant’s pledge exposing the “lies” of europhiles. Akio Toyoda, chief executive of the Japanese multinational, has promised to keep the company’s large assembly plant in Burnaston, Derbyshire running for at least the next 75 years.

Along with its engine plant in Deeside, North Wales, the leading car brand employs close to 4,000 people in the UK.

Daily Mail

I was only looking at a photo! Bizarre excuses of drivers caught on mobiles

A police force has revealed some of the excuses used by motorist caught using their phones while driving, including: ‘I have a new girlfriend and our song came on the radio, so I had to call her.’ Surrey Police’s roads policing unit released some of the more ludicrous explanations to raise awareness of the dangers of driving whilst using your phone. One driver told officers: ‘I was only looking at a photo – drivers using their mobiles really annoy me’

Posted by Sue Robinson on 15/01/2016