Poisonous cadmium found in VW’s EV charging plugs
After the suspicion became public that poisonous components were potentially being used in EVs, the investigation has yielded first findings: A supplier delivered charging components infected with cadmium to VW, Audi and Porsche.
The chargers were installed over the past six years, affecting the majority of both battery-electric and plug-in hybrid vehicles by VW, Audi and Porsche. A recall may be issued which could affect up to 124,000 vehicles.
Volkswagen has stated that they were not informed about the dangerous chemical levels by the supplier, instead finding out themselves that 0.008 grams of cadmium are present in each charger, which the company then reported to the German authorities. A spokesperson also stated that the serial production and delivery of affected vehicles was also immediately stopped, and that an alternative supplier has been found to replace the parts before production continued.
Cadmium is a heavy metal that is considered carcinogenic, as well as damaging to organs, which is why it was banned from use in personal vehicles around three years ago. Acute danger from the affected parts was not found, according to VW. The affected components are sealed behind several layers of casing. Problems are expected when the vehicles are recycled or disassembled.
Last Monday, it was announced that the German KBA ministry was investigating the suspicion that affected components had been installed in EVs, however it had not been publicized which parts or which manufacturers were affected.