12 Dec 18

Diesel euphoria: new BMW models way below Euro 6d-temp NOx limits

Those who predicted the end of diesel may have to reconsider. German mobility organisation ADAC conducted both bench and road tests with several new diesel models and the results turn out to be very positive.

Dieselgate has led to the development of diesels that are not only clean on paper, but also in practice. Since the introduction of the Euro 6d-temp emission standard, newly launched models must keep their NOx emissions below 80 mg/km in lab conditions (WLTP) and under 168 mg/km during the RDE (Real Driving Emissions) test.

ADAC has now found that some OEMs, like BMW, have done their homework well. The Bavarian carmaker is proud to announce that real-world tests resulted in maximum points in the emissions section of the ADAC EcoTest for a series of its models: the BMW 520d touring, the 218d Active Tourer Steptronic and the X1 sDrive 18d Steptronic.

The BMW 520d Touring performed superbly in the nitrogen oxide tests, with a reading of less than 16 mg/km in urban driving and under 10 mg/km in rural driving and on the motorway. About the 218d, ADAC had the following to say: “BMW is dealing extremely well with the issue of emissions. There are no abnormal figures for any type of pollutant, and the nitrogen oxide emissions are so low they could even be a record. Even the sensitive measuring equipment used for the test barely managed to detect any emissions in some cases.”

Up to 99% NOx reduction

In general, ADAC lab test performed between 2012 and now shows a decline of 85 % in terms of NOx emissions between Euro 5 and Euro 6d-temp diesels, and still 76 % between Euro 6b and Euro 6d-temp models.
The best Euro 6d-temp diesels even outperform the average Euro 5 diesel by up to 99 %. The implication is double: Euro 5 diesels were really bad – ADAC’s EcoTest measured an average of 528 mg/km, i.e. nearly three times the allowed maximum of 180 mg/km – and Euro 6d-temp diesels are apt pupils.

Euro 6b models, which were believed to be a lot cleaner than their Euro 5 predecessors, averaged a still worrying 341 mg/km on the ADAC’s stringent lab test, which is more than 4 times the maximum value allowed by the emissions standard, i.e. 80 mg/km.

Hope for diesel future

ADAC says it is happy to see the positive evolution between Euro 6b and Euro 6c/Euro 6d-temp. The 25 tested models posted an average NOx emission level of 81 mg/km in lab conditions according to ADAC’s protocol – which is just 1 mg/km above the limit applied by the Euro 6d-temp standard.

52% of all models tested kept their average below the prescribed 80 mg/km. Nine of the 25 tested models stayed below this limit in all test phases, including the one involving motorway driving. The best car, the BMW X1 sDrive 1.8d, posted an applaudable 8 mg/km on ADAC’s test bench.

If anything, these findings confirm that OEMs have been doing their homework. Once more, keep calm & diesel on seems the message for fleet owners, consumers and leasing companies, who could find themselves reassured by these independent findings.



Authored by: Dieter Quartier