• Oct 9th 2006 at 6:58AM
  • 15
The giants of Germany have come together and decided that the best way to develop the potential of diesel in the U.S. is total market dominance. Not with one vehicle, but with one engine.

Mercedes' Bluetec diesel came out swinging at the Detroit Auto Show, only to kneed in the groin by California emission regulations. What was thought to be one of the cleanest diesels available, turned out to be just a few oxides of nitrogen over the newly developed limits. To resolve the situation, Mercedes developed the urea injection system that pumps a small amount of ammonia-based acid into the exhaust stream, neutralizing many of the harmful emissions. The problem is, the urea bladder needs to be refilled periodically and unless there's a mandate set for all drivers to do so, the engines will run with no drama, but will pollute at a greater level.

Here's where strength in numbers comes to the fore. Audi, BMW, Mercedes-Benz and Volkswagen have joined forces and will begin equipping all their U.S.-slated diesel offerings with the Bluetec system. In doing so, they will set a standard for diesel offerings in the States, have a common, marketable brand and will have massive purchasing power over Bosch who creates most of the components necessary.

Audi and VW have already signed on to the deal, with BMW's CEO, Norbert Reithofer and our favorite mustached-marketer, Dr. Z of DaimlerChrysler, expected to work the details out this week. A formal announcement of the automaker's intentions will likely be made in two weeks time.

VW will debut a Bluetec-powered Tiguan at this year's L.A. Auto Show and we'll see other Bluetec offerings in the coming months, in the form of the BMW X5, Audi Q7, Jeep Grand Cherokee and Merc R-, M- and GL-classes.

[Source: Automotive News – Sub. Req.]

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 9 Years Ago
      #4- Diesel particulates ARE harmful, in fact, the smaller particulates resulting from the common rail process are proving to be more dangerous, since they like to embed temselves in the cell walls of the lungs, rather than just sitting there. Further, Blue Tech (VW will market it as Blue Motion) does not act on Paticles at all, but rather on the trace NOx left after the SCR (and particle trap) does its job. Why it isn't valid to simply throw a lamp on the dash when the urea is low, just as when a gasoline system senses an emissions related problem, is beyond me.
      • 8 Years Ago
      To neutralizing the emission, instead that using ammonia, why they do not use the Pantone idea?

      I believe a Pantone system can take care of that problem…


      • 9 Years Ago
      I'm really happy for this decision.
      Congratulations to all germans

      • 9 Years Ago
      Maarten, you are assuming that the emissions are somehow harmful. The Blutec system is designed to cut down on particulate (smog causing) emissions, not the stuff which is harmful to human health. If it rained more in California, this whole issue would be moot.

      Would this system even be required in California if non-petroleum Diesel (ie: vegetable oil) is used? I doubt it.


      • 9 Years Ago
      Simply program the engine control computer to turn down the max boost supplied by the turbo and turn on an idiot light on the instrument cluster. Engine will still run without problems and will pollute less with less power produced until someone pees into the tank to refill it.
      • 9 Years Ago
      Seems rather "bully-ish," especially given last week's announcement by Honda that they are developing a technology that does not require the urea (ick!) tank.
      • 9 Years Ago
      The sky is falling! Poor Guenther! Grow up kids, cars will pollute, their will be a trade off for greater mileage. If California doesn't want it, the rest of the country does. Why doesn't California just shut down their economy and stop all acitivity? That is the only way to be truly green, so, California, it has been good knowing you - you can leave now!
      • 9 Years Ago
      Why doesn't Arnold Schwarzenegger go ahead and ban imports from China? We all know it's the pollution-producing coal plants over in China that's causing all the smog in California.
      • 9 Years Ago
      I always wanted to own a diesel V12 but that dream may never come true in US.

      Its just terrible that when VW and benz have started building those awesome machines we cannot have it and have to put up with these hybrid turds.
      Greg A.
      • 9 Years Ago
      Not just Honda, but VW: Remember the recent Autoblog item about the diesel 2008 VW Jetta with the 2.0-liter CRD TDI engine that was publicly displayed in Boston? That car doesn't require a urea injection system, either, although I couldn't find out if it will meet the Tier II - Bin 5 regulations that will take effect later on.
      • 9 Years Ago
      Bio-Diesels with Full Plug-in Hybrid cars would get about 60 to 80 MPG. Much less green house gas, no new infrastructure required, new markets for American farm products, new jobs in Americans and ZERO imported oil!!!!!!

      The only thing standing in the way of this vision of a more prosperous and secure USA is the California Air Resources Board. Have they been infiltrated by al-Qaeda????
      • 8 Years Ago
      What's the issue about drivers not keeping the AdBlue urea filled up?
      Every time they get an emission test, it will be checked.

      If it is almost empty, it will be filled up at the emission site and added to the emission testing bill.

      If it is completely empty, there will be an additional fine for those who don't maintain their vehicles.

      The standard range auto manufactures say one tank of urea will go is 13,500 to 15,000 miles.

      This is typical 1 year average driving for most.

      To the idiot who has a hang-up about pee, Urea is an "ammonia-based acid".

      Are you going to stop taking vitamin C because it is an acid (also known as "Ascorbic Acid")?

      Urea is an excellent, cost-effective way to clean the emissions. Combine Honda's diesel catalytic converter that uses silver to reduce emissions, and this will be the cleanest alternative fuel of all fuels.

      Hybrids are among the most polluting vehicles.

      It is not just what comes out of the tailpipe.
      The entire amount of pollution created to manufacture all of the additional parts/batteries/etc. for hybrids actual make hybrids more pollutive than current SUVs.

      Not to mention weight distribution problems, loss of space in the passenger compartment and in the trunk, and countless other inherent drawbacks all hybrids have.

      Why do you think Honda is building a diesel for the US and Japanese markets that historically have been against diesels?

      It's because diesels are superior and can run on Bio-Diesel without any modifications.
      Bio-Diesel can be made out of literally dozens of things, including clean coal that has zero sulfur.

      In Montana and North Dakota alone, there is enough clean coal to power the entire US by Bio-Diesel, with estimates ranging from 50 - 800 years supply.

      Think about it......that's only 2 of our 50 states, and doesn't even include all of the others things Bio-Diesel can be made out of.

      Support the US. Be Hybrid-FREE!!!
        • 8 Years Ago
        To neutralizing the emission, instead that using ammonia, why they do not use the Pantone idea?

        I believe a Pantone system can take care of that problem…


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