Nox emissions are the primary cause of the “dirty” label that is applied to diesel engines. Nox emissions are linked to urban smog, ozone formation and breathing problems. However, diesel engines emit much less CO2 than a gasoline powered car, which is why diesel is a desirable option to combat the global warming effect of CO2 emissions. Therefore, if the Nox problem is solved, diesel engines indisputably become the preferred engine type.
“There’s a future for diesel. Soon, emissions will no longer be an issue.” – Bosch CEO Dr. Volkmar Denner
Bosch announced that their new system releases just 10% of the allowable Nox limit under the most stringent new EU emissions regulations scheduled for 2020. Most importantly, Bosch claims that this new system is designed to keep emissions within regulation during all driving conditions, even cold conditions. If you remember, VW and Mercedes both were found to have programming that turned off emissions systems under certain driving situations, which seemingly was allowed by EU law in the name of engine “protection”. Bosch CEO Dr. Volkmar Denner also called upon Bosch to be more transparent regarding their technology and its impact on emissions. To prove that their technology worked in “real world” driving, they hooked up emissions monitoring equipment to a fleet of vehicles that Bosch deployed this new emissions technology on. They allowed journalists to drive around Stuttgart while live monitoring their vehicle emissions.
Until electromobility breaks through to the mass market, we will still need these highly efficient combustion engines,”
Unfortunately, Bosch was very light on details regarding this new technology other than saying that it largely revolved around new injection technologies and regulating exhaust gas temperatures. This largely negated the “transparency” stunt with journalists in cars. It was further disappointing in light of recent events where Bosch and VW claimed to have “solved” the Nox problem but ultimately had only programmed the cars to beat the tests. There are very critical eyes on Bosch right now, especially from regulators and eco-conscious consumers, and making a bold announcement such as this and failing to deliver it would be the final nail in diesel and Bosch’s coffin.
Bosch seems aware of this scenario, however, and in addition to touting new technology that defends diesel’s place in the future, Denner also went on the offensive against gasoline engines. He called for better testing and, again, increased transparency in regards to real-world CO2 emissions. Since gasoline powered cars are the largest source of CO2, Denner is not so subtly suggesting that gasoline emissions are much worse than claimed. He continued, too, to bring up electric cars and their impact on CO2 production.