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Daimler says working with authorities to fix emissions issues

[MUNICH] Daimler AG said it is working with German authorities to resolve issues with emissions irregularities with its diesel-powered vehicles, rejecting a report about a recall of thousands of vehicles as already widely known.

The maker of Mercedes-Benz cars commented after German magazine Der Spiegel said the manufacturer might be forced to recall as many as 700,000 cars over their emissions setups, citing a report it obtained from Germany's federal Motor Transport Authority. The company said it's been working through the issues, which were announced in June, and rebutted the magazine's claims that there are new problems.

"Daimler will continue to fully cooperate with the authorities and establish transparency," the Stuttgart-based automaker said in the statement. The company has filed an object to the order issued by Germany's motor vehicle office to "to gain clarity in a very complex matter."

Germany's government slapped the world's biggest luxury carmaker with a recall in June, following consultations with Chief Executive Officer Dieter Zetsche and Transport Minister Andreas Scheuer. While the order was a setback for a company that steadfastly claimed a clean-engine record, it avoided more costly measures such as fines or a hardware fix to allow Daimler to execute software updates instead.

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Spiegel listed 24 models, including the small Mercedes-Benz C-class, the high-end S-class sedan, some SUVs and the Vito van as being affected. Daimler's website features an online tool for vehicle owners to check if their car is part of the recall.

Liberal interpretations of loose European Union rules on car emissions have led to a number of spats between authorities and carmakers, who have been under scrutiny since Volkswagen AG's emissions cheating in 2015. Daimler already voluntarily recalled some 3 million vehicles in the EU last year, alongside similar moves by VW and BMW, for software updates to improve emissions performance.

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