Wednesday, 30 September 2015

Ricardo: RDE providing a pathway to cleaner diesels

Ricardo claims it has demonstrated processes for evaluating the emission technologies of diesel cars under the forthcoming Real Driving Emissions (RDE) regulations which aim to ensure on-road compliance with published type approval data for fuel economy and emissions.

Ricardo set to give JAC a big boost

Ricardo is developing a production version of its ‘HyBoost’ concept to give China’s JAC a 30 per cent fuel economy gain.

VW scandal: Action plan unveiled

Volkswagen AG has unveiled its action plan to correct the emissions characteristics of diesel vehicles.

Tuesday, 29 September 2015

Volkswagen, scandal and the rumour mill

The rumour mill is asking: How would Volkswagen’s vehicles know when the EPA’s emissions testing equipment was connected?

Monday, 28 September 2015

The engineer who brought down Volkswagen

According to the Huffington Post, Daniel Carder, an unassuming 45-year-old engineer with grey hair and blue jeans, appears an unlikely type to take down one of the world's most powerful companies.

Sunday, 27 September 2015

The Cat trims its tail

The past week has been a topsy-turvy world for the vehicle industry: the self-savaging of VW, Caterpillar’s 33-rolling months sales decline in the Far East and a dividend award of £60 million for JCB’s chairman and family.

Friday, 25 September 2015

Wednesday, 23 September 2015

Winterkorn experiences his own downfall

A great many thoughts must be whizzing through the brain of Ferdinand Piech, who resigned earlier this year in favour of Professor Martin Winterkorn who has himself now resigned.

Ricardo set for natural gas engine R&D

Ricardo is set to be a key partner in the European Commission’s Horizon 2020 Green Vehicle Initiative project ‘HDGAS’ – which aims for a 10 per cent in overall engine improvement.

Tuesday, 22 September 2015

SMMT gives a view about emissions testing

On a day when the fall in the share price of Volkswagen AG almost doubled and its plight continued to spiral downwards, the UK Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders has given a view about passenger car emissions testing without passing comment one way or the other about the dilemma faced by Volkswagen Group in Germany, and possibly other automakers in Europe.

 “The UK automotive industry understands the concerns consumers may have following the actions of one manufacturer in regard to emissions testing and the subsequent decision to recall a large number of its cars. This is, however, an issue affecting just one company and there is no evidence to suggest that any other company is involved, let alone that this is an industry-wide issue.

“Consumers should be reassured that cars sold in the UK must comply with strict European laws. All cars must complete a standard emissions test, which, unlike in the US, is independently witnessed by a government-appointed independent agency.

“On the separate on-going debate about real-world testing, industry accepts that the current test method for cars is out of date and is seeking agreement from the European Commission for a new emissions test that embraces new testing technologies and which is more representative of on-road conditions.”

                                           UK Car emissions testing

Why is it done? All cars sold in the UK have to undergo an official emissions test under EU law. This is to ensure they meet the latest emissions standards, as set by the European Commission, before they can be sold to the consumer.

The latest emissions standard is Euro-6 – and all new cars registered in the EU from 1 September 2015 are required to meet this standard. A range of emissions is tested, including carbon monoxide, particulate matter, hydrocarbons and nitrogen oxides (NOx).

What is the test? It is a laboratory test, which ensures consistency and absolute comparability from one vehicle to another. The vehicle is put onto a ‘rolling road’ and fitted with equipment to measure emissions. The vehicle will then perform a standardised drive cycle known as the New European Drive Cycle (NEDC) – which contains set acceleration/deceleration levels, and replicates different driving conditions.

If the vehicle emits levels of pollutants lower than the limits set for the Euro-6 standard, it will receive a Euro-6 approval certificate, meaning the vehicle can be sold.

What are the conditions of the test? The test is carried out in a controlled temperature of 20-30C, and the car must be calibrated to the specification as sold to the customer.

All of the vehicle’s components must be present and cannot be tampered with. For example, the alternator belt must be intact and the brakes must function fully to pass testing. The vehicle will be checked to ensure it has the same tyre pressures, fluid levels and components as it would have on the road.

Who carries out the test? The test is carried out in a government-approved test facility, with a government-appointed independent witness.

Who governs the test? The EU test operates in strict conditions and is witnessed by a government-appointed independent approval agency. In the UK, this is the Vehicle Certification Agency, which is responsible to the Department for Transport.

How old is the test? The current test dates back to 1996.

What is the difference between the EU test and the US test? In the US, the official tests are carried out by the manufacturer and not witnessed by an independent third-party as they are in the EU. The results are submitted to the US Environmental

Monday, 21 September 2015

VW on the ropes as 'cheating' issue grows

Volkswagen shares fell some 18 per cent on the first full day off trading following the EPA finding that algorithms on some VW Group cars could manipulate emissions limits.

Saturday, 19 September 2015

EPA accuses VW of 'defeat' emission devices

The US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is issuing a notice of violation (NOV) of the Clean Air Act (CAA) to Volkswagen AG, Audi AG, and Volkswagen Group of America, Inc.

Friday, 18 September 2015

Cummins diesel prospect creates a buzz in Texas

There's a bit of a buzz in the air in San Antonio, Texas. For there, Toyota Motor Manufacturing Texas (TMMT) has a strategy to ramp up pick-up truck production.

Tuesday, 15 September 2015

Autonomous pod takes to the road

The first of three pod vehicles was unveiled in the UK today as part of a pioneering project to trial automated vehicles in pedestrianised areas.

How GKN can make the Ford Focus drift

GKN Automotive has developed a new version of its Twinster torque vectoring all-wheel drive (AWD) system for the Ford Focus RS.

The man who changed Volkswagen?

Martin Winterkorn clearly wants to be remembered as the man who changed the face of the Volkswagen group.

Monday, 14 September 2015

Jaguar F-PACE: More business for vendors

Jaguar’s F-PACE performance crossover for with its lightweight aluminium architecture provides further business for suppliers of major technology and component suppliers.

Ford drives IC engine R&D to challenge EVs

As Ford continues to push its hybrid and electric vehicle products, its technical centre in Germany is working on lean reciprocating engines.

Mahindra launches India's first SUV with AMT

India’s leading SUV manufacturer, Mahindra, has unveiled its much-awaited sports utility vehicle, the TUV300.

JLR pushes on with zero emission technology

JaguarLandRover (JLR) has revealed some of the new and innovative low and zero emission powertrain technologies it is researching.

Sunday, 13 September 2015

A time to hold nerves and stay calm

As auto executives pay homage by attending Europe's top-class automotive event – this year's Frankfurt motor show, just starting – their minds will be on other matters.

Friday, 4 September 2015

Daimler-Nissan break ground in Mexico

Daimler and the Renault-Nissan Alliance yesterday broke ground for their joint-venture manufacturing complex, COMPAS (Cooperation Manufacturing Plant Aguascalientes) in central Mexico set to build next-generation premium compact vehicles for the brands Mercedes-Benz and Infiniti.

Thursday, 3 September 2015

Navistar: Losses continue to flow

Thunder continues to rumble in the background at troubled Navistar International Corporation which has now reported 12 straight quarter losses on the trot

Ricardo cuts rear drive unit weight by 25%

Ricardo claims that by using state-of-the-art technologies it can cut the weight of a rear drive unit by 25 per cent

Schaeffler makes new active roll control unit

Schaeffler has built completely new production facilities at its Schweinfurt location in Germany to make a new electromechanical active roll control system the company has put into volume production.

Tuesday, 1 September 2015

Is there a market for plug-in hybrid trucks?

If Bob Lutz, chairman of VIA Motors is to be believed, his company is aiming to sell 50,000 hybrid trucks and vans a year by 2018.

Nissan seeks 10 per cent of US market

Nissan wants a 10 per cent US market share in 2016, according to Jose Munoz, chairman of Nissan North America, speaking recently at the J.D. Power Automotive Summit in San Francisco.