Fuel quality delays next-gen Merc's diesel in India

You may have to wait a bit longer for the Mercedes 2.0-litre diesel engine to reach India because the unit is compatible only with Euro V and VI fuel quality. Here in India around 50 cities follow the BS-IV norms which are same as Euro IV norms and all other cities follow BS-III standards.

The Managing Director and CEO of Mercedes-Benz India Mr. Roland Folger told Autocar India,“The new 2.0-litre diesel engine is not compatible with BS-IV fuel quality. In India, you have a downward compatibility that means Euro III and IV cars can run on fuel of Euro V and VI quality. But a Euro VI compatible vehicle cannot run on Euro III or IV fuel,”.

But as per an earlier announcement by the government, India is expected to adopt BS-V emission standards by April 1, 2020. So, let’s see what happens after four years.
The next-gen Merc has all-aluminum diesel engine, dubbed OM564, which has made its entry to the new E-class for the first time. Mercedes is planning to equip all its cars with this engine. The 1,950cc, 2.0-litre, four-cylinder diesel engine is 30kg lighter and 14 percent more efficient than the previous 2.1 litre engine. For now, there is no update on whether Mercedes will equip the all-new E-class in India with the same engine.

Mr Folger also added, “Our complete new technology on hybrids, plug-in hybrids and full hybrids all anchors on Euro V and VI fuel, because there is no point in developing such a technology for Euro III and IV markets from a volume perspective because there are only a few markets around the word that that still adhere to those norms,”.

Despite the under 2,000 cc engine, Mercedes is not able to launch its next-Gen just because of the fuel quality. But in no case is Mercedes even ready to launch vehicles with an engine below 2,000 cc just because of the ban. On this Folger said, “Just bringing out vehicles having capacities below 2,000cc is not going to solve any pollution issues. It will on the other hand send out a completely wrong message to the authorities,”.

The conclusion is it would be a real challenge to come up with new diesel engines because it would take a lot of time and tests to approve a sub-2,000cc diesel running on Euro IV fuel standards.