Deciphered – Was the beginning of 2017 is the death knell for the diesel?

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Ontcijferd – Luidde 2017 de doodsklok voor de diesel? #1

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The salon of Brussels in 2018 is a wonderful opportunity for contemplation. And especially about the hoopla surrounding the potential end of the diesel engine. Is that really there, or is it a hype? And was this predictable? This is our analysis of the situation.

The motor show of Brussels 2018 focuses the spotlights on the malaise of the diesel. This fuel was 15 years ago, is still seen as a miracle solution, especially thanks to the advances in the field of direct injection and drukvoeding –, but is today all sides taken under fire and spewed. The figures for 2017 are clear: for the first time since 1997, diesel inferior to the rest. In 2015 was the zelfontbrander with us still accounts for 60 percent of the entries, but today is that market share fell to 46.3 percent – on 546.558 registered cars. Of course, especially the petrol engine take advantage of, because he has 48,2 percent of the car buyers to be convinced.

Diesel loses in Europe site

This scenario is not just in Belgium. Anywhere in Europe will lose the diesel site. According to the European association of car manufacturers ACEA is the European market share of zelfontbranders in Europe in the first half of 2017 – the statistics of the second half of the year are not yet available – dropped from 50.2 to 46.3 percent. Because the phenomenon is so pervasive, predict a lot of analysts now already the end of this fuel, in combination with the recovery of gasoline or even the breakthrough of the electric car in a year or 5. Though that is undoubtedly what premature.

Predictable decline

It is simplistic to pretend that everything started in 2015 with the Volkswagen affair or Dieselgate, when it turned out that was cheating with the control of various diesel engines. Of course this will be provided have had any impact and the fall of the diesel which have accelerated in the eyes of the public opinion, but we must not lose sight that the falling suggests of zelfontbranders already for 2015 has begun. Eurostat, the European agency for statistics, notes for a much longer time, that the number of dieselinschrijvingen begins to decline in favour of case of various petrol types. The phenomenon is already ten years earlier, used, in 2005. The reason for this is called Euro 6.

The expensive Euro 6 standard

This most recent uitstootnorm was introduced in 2014 and forces the manufacturers to make filters to install against oxides of nitrogen (the infamous NOx), which is very expensive. Only this Euro 6 standard would be the cost to the automotive companies with 600 to 1,000 euros per car have increased. That additional cost comes on top of the extra investment that the previous euro standards have required, and he is, of course, passed on to the consumers… that would make no sense to have that much money to cough up. The sharp increase in the price of diesel cars makes the tipping point where they become cheaper over the past ten years has moved from a 15,000 to more than 30,000 kilometres. That, of course, is huge, especially when you know that in our country, the excise duties for diesel and petrol this year alike are drawn, making the transition even more is moved.

If you know that the average European’s 20,000 kilometers per year, it is easier to understand why the market is slowly becoming more to gasoline tends. That last technology also has the wind in our sails thanks to hybrid and plug-in hybrid systems. Because the consumption of print, get them in a lot of countries also gunstmaatregelen of ministers of finance.

Air pollution: the spectrum

The declining popularity of the diesel engine was, in other words predictable and the market was especially twenty or so years ago out of balance. However, there are recently a number of parameters have emerged that the cover can accelerate and which to the bright huge panic have led that today prevails. One of these is of course the Volkswagen affair or Dieselgate, that tampering with the engine management light brought, and which mainly contributed to the sensitivity of the general public for the issue of public health. Zelfontbranders are responsible for a large part of the air pollution, on the one hand, by their fijnstofuitstoot (carbon filters do not hold anything against it) and on the other by their emission of nitrogen oxides (NOx), which in 2012 officially ‘carcinogenic’ are called by the world health organization.

A study in may 2017 by the ngo ICCT was published in the magazine Nature revealed that, worldwide, 107.600 deaths per year as a result of the emissions of oxides of nitrogen, of which 38.000 are due to the fact that cars are, in reality, emit more than what the standards allow, even though we know that those standards be met to complete an unrealistic measurement conditions set by the government are imposed. Because more and more consumers are greener come to think, decide they also have to be cleaner and go for a drive. That is also getting less difficult, since you are no longer a fortune must pay for hybrid technology, which in some models is almost cheaper than a diesel engine. With some brands you need in a similar model and equipment, but 600 euros to pay more for a hybrid than for a diesel. And if it is a company car, the hybrid car is often a much higher tax deductible than the diesel.

Diesel is better for CO2 emissions

In 2014, expect the analysts of PSA the market by 2020 would rearrange to a balance of 43/57 percent in favour of the petrol engine. Today, it seems that that last the even better going to do. That provides a few problems for the CO2-quota – editor’s note: CO2 is a greenhouse gas, but also is not a pollutant – which is the European government imposes. Because a diesel engine consumes less fuel than a petrol, he remains today an efficient way to get the quotas which have been imposed for now and for the future – on average 95 g/km in 2020 and to 75 g/km in 2025. Alone, therefore, we can diesels not just delete. Unless governments, the decisions of a number of major cities would take over in the future, diesel cars simply access to their territory to deny them (into what is called the LEZ or low emission zones).

Surprising turn in Japan

This CO2-problem, that is decisive for the climate change, sometimes leads to surprising decisions, such as in Japan. In the 1990s, sent the Japanese government diesels from Tokyo by all of the health problems that they bring with them. Today, will the government there, however, his cart: on the basis of the constructeursgegevens in the opinion of the government now that the most recent diesel engines with particulate filters and NOx catalysts are clean and that they return to the town in may. To the population to convince, you get from the Japanese government a financial boost in the form of a discount of 75 percent on the autobelasting. The goal is to, by 2030, a market share of 5 to 10 percent to get among private customers, while in 2005, only 0.4 percent was, with the advantage of a exemplary air quality in the Japanese mega city since the year 2000. What is the reason of that strategieverandering? That lies with the international objectives around the reduction of CO2-emissions as laid down in the Kyoto protocol to the warming of the earth to slow down. A diesel engine emits, on average, 15 percent less CO2 than a petrol engine. And because in this period of growth, each percentage counts…

Governments are to blame for the chaos

Public authorities also have their share in the huge panic and the accelerated erosion of the share of the diesel engine. Brussels wants from 2025 only Euro 6 diesel engines, allow on its territory, but Wallonia would the sale prohibit in 2030. That helps, of course, not to customers to reassure or stabilise the market. What we absolutely need is to have a in-depth debate on diesel, and a co-ordinated policy for the Belgian – and preferably European territory.

But whatever happens, the diesel engine may in the course of the years, or to appeal losses, he will not be today to tomorrow disappear. Certainly not in the more expensive segments, such as large sedans or large SUVS, where he still remains very important, and that will not change quickly. The diesel is not dead yet. He still has a career for themselves, all of which will undoubtedly otherwise will look like. The same goes for the petrol engine today, with its hybrid technology, especially plug-in hybrids, by 2020 explosive market share will win.

Click here to read our advice on how to get the best fuel option when you purchase your car.

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