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EU TCMV agrees on 3rd real driving emissions (RDE) regulatory package

20 December 2016

The European Council’s Technical Committee—Motor Vehicles (TCMV) agreed on the so-called third Real Driving Emissions (RDE) regulatory package that covers particle number (PN) emission limits (conformity factors) and timing, as well as other changes to the RDE regulations, including cold start NOx emissions and DPF regeneration events.

The TCMV voted in support of the European Commission’s proposal to adopt a PN conformity factor of 1.5 for gasoline direct injection cars, with the effect from September 2017 for new type approvals and from September 2018 for all new vehicles. The automotive industry has been lobbying to delay the PN RDE requirements by two years, until September 2019. The TCMV vote was passed 23 votes to 3 (Czech Republic, Hungary, Romania), with one abstaining vote (Slovakia).

A Euro 6 (NEDC) PN emission limit of 6.0×1011 km-1—identical to that for diesel cars—is applicable to gasoline direct injection (GDI) vehicles from 2017.09 for new types and from 2018.09 for all vehicles. The addition of the RDE limit is expected to force a wide scale use of gasoline particulate filters (GPF) on GDI cars. PN emissions can also be controlled via in-cylinder strategies, but these techniques tend to be effective over a certain range of operating conditions (such as over the NEDC test), while GPFs are effective in controlling PN emissions at all operating conditions.

The amendments also introduce changes to the RDE procedures to account for cold start NOx emissions and for regeneration events of diesel particulate filters. The absence of cold start conditions in the original RDE procedure has been often criticized, as cold starts can contribute a significant fraction of overall vehicle emissions, especially in urban driving with short duration of trips.

Source: TCMV 63rd meeting