By using our site you accept the terms of our cookie policy

‘Defeat devices’ demonstrate diesels are still a danger

Last week the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) sent shockwaves through the automotive industry when it accused leading global vehicle manufacturer Volkswagen of installing software in 482,000 vehicles sold in the country designed to violate the country’s Clean Air Act.

VW has since owned up to the illegal practice of fitting so-called “defeat devices” which are capable of detecting when a car’s emissions are being tested so they can temporarily switch on other systems to lower the amount of toxic gases being emitted.

Clearly, this type of practice is completely dishonest and to its credit, VW has held its hands up in this remarkable deception.

However, such a startling revelation does bring into doubt claims by many others within the automotive industry about the environmental credentials of new diesel cars.

What’s more, data issued this week by Transport and Environmental, a Brussels-based research organisation, showed that vehicles from six different manufacturers produced on average four times more than the legal limit of NO2 on the road, even though they had all passed the EU’s tests, which are carried out in simulated driving conditions in a laboratory.

It’s clear that even with the new Euro 6 emissions legislation, we need to ensure that new vehicles are genuinely cleaner than their predecessors, but on the road as well rather than just in the test lab.

So with the pressure building against diesels, is there a cleaner alternative which can help stem the tide of poor air quality? LPG remains the obvious solution and we’d like to see vehicle manufacturers give UK car buyers the choice of autogas LPG powered cars directly from their showrooms as they do in mainland Europe where more than 14 manufacturers offer LPG models from new. The fuel is readily available today at more than 1,400 forecourt locations around the UK. Independent testing has proven that it is a much cleaner fuel source than diesel, with LPG vehicles emitting 80 percent less NO2 emissions than diesel and 98 percent fewer harmful particulates.

Given a fair choice, simple market forces may see more drivers make the switch to LPG from diesel which would significantly help improve air quality in the UK.

Last week the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) sent shockwaves through the automotive industry when it accused leading global vehicle manufacturer Volkswagen of installing software in 482,000 vehicles sold in the country designed to violate the country’s Clean Air Act.

VW has since owned up to the illegal practice of fitting so-called “defeat devices” which are capable of detecting when a car’s emissions are being tested so they can temporarily switch on other systems to lower the amount of toxic gases being emitted.

Clearly, this type of practice is completely dishonest and to its credit, VW has held its hands up in this remarkable deception.

However, such a startling revelation does bring into doubt claims by many others within the automotive industry about the environmental credentials of new diesel cars.

What’s more, data issued this week by Transport and Environmental, a Brussels-based research organisation, showed that vehicles from six different manufacturers produced on average four times more than the legal limit of NO2 on the road, even though they had all passed the EU’s tests, which are carried out in simulated driving conditions in a laboratory.

It’s clear that even with the new Euro 6 emissions legislation, we need to ensure that new vehicles are genuinely cleaner than their predecessors, but on the road as well rather than just in the test lab.

So with the pressure building against diesels, is there a cleaner alternative which can help stem the tide of poor air quality? LPG remains the obvious solution and we’d like to see vehicle manufacturers give UK car buyers the choice of autogas LPG powered cars directly from their showrooms as they do in mainland Europe where more than 14 manufacturers offer LPG models from new. The fuel is readily available today at more than 1,400 forecourt locations around the UK. Independent testing has proven that it is a much cleaner fuel source than diesel, with LPG vehicles emitting 80 percent less NO2 emissions than diesel and 98 percent fewer harmful particulates.

Given a fair choice, simple market forces may see more drivers make the switch to LPG from diesel which would significantly help improve air quality in the UK.

image
Make an Enquiry
Share this page: