The Car and Truck Fleet and Leasing Management Magazine

New Year Ushers in New Era of Clean Diesel Trucks

January 09, 2007

WASHINGTON, D.C. – With new clean-diesel heavy-duty engines set to roll off of assembly lines nationwide this year, the diesel industry demonstrated that it has met the technological and regulatory challenges of manufacturing trucks that produce up to 90-percent fewer emissions than the previous generation of diesels. Developing these new- generation clean-diesel engines and trucks has required industry-wide multi-billion-dollar engineering and research investments by emissions-control manufacturers and engine and truck makers, which have been underway since the beginning of this decade. In addition, to requiring the use of ultra-low sulfur diesel (ULSD) fuel, the trucks and engines deploy the latest technology in engine management, fuel injection, emissions reduction, and turbocharging innovations. This year is the first step toward near-zero emissions for diesel truck engines. Additional changes take place in the 2010-model year that will further reduce NOx by a total of 90 percent from 2004 levels. Clean diesel will ultimately bring emissions reductions across a range of applications, including:

  • Trucks and buses: New trucks and buses will be the first class of equipment to benefit from clean diesel. While 2006 trucks or buses already produced only one-eighth the tailpipe exhaust compared to those built in 1990, new vehicles will be even cleaner. It will take 60 trucks built in 2007 to equal the soot emissions of one truck sold in 1988.
  • Increased demand for new fuel: The roll-out of these new cleaner engines follows the Oct. 2006 introduction of ULSD fuel, containing only 15 parts per million (ppm) sulfur content, compared to 500 ppm for the old fuel, for a 9- percent reduction in sulfur.
  • Passenger vehicles: Clean-diesel technology, designed to deliver 20-40-percent greater fuel economy, also can be found in several new diesel cars, trucks, and SUVs, the market for which is expected to expand in the next several model years.
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