New vehicle NOx rating scheme to clear air quality confusion

A new initiative has been announced by Emissions Analytics to help consumers, policy makers and vehicle manufacturers better understand the real-world emissions of nitrogen oxides (NOx) from new cars. It will launch in early 2016, after fully considering input from its advisory board.

The NOxaccreditation initiative will help buyers clearly identify the cars emitting the lowest quantities of harmful pollutants, allow manufacturers to demonstrate their vehicles’ clean credentials, and provide data to policymakers on progress in the drive to improve air quality. Working across the European Union, the scheme will measure the NOxperformance of passenger cars in real-world driving conditions.

The accreditation scheme is intended to complement the forthcoming Real Driving Emissions regulations for new vehicle certification.  It will help ensure that vehicles remain compliant when driven normally on roads, and thereby contribute towards real air quality improvements.  Furthermore, it will give consumers a rating that allows the comparison of the relative performance of different cars.

Building on its emissions testing of more than 1000 vehicles over the last four years, Emissions Analytics is ideally positioned to launch the rating scheme. It comes at a time when there is increasing focus on emissions and air quality, following vehicle certification irregularities and legal actions against European countries for air quality violations in cities.  The importance of these issues is borne out in the recent consultation by the Department for Environment Food & Rural Affairs (DEFRA) and the plans for local clean air zones in the UK. 

To ensure the most effective and robust system, Emissions Analytics has brought together a group of experts to provide advice and guidance, review the test and rating methodology, monitor the regulatory context, and provide input into the wider development of the scheme.  This group of leading academic and industry figures includes:

Professor Helen ApSimon – Air Pollution Studies, Imperial College London, UK
Dr Adam Boeis – Department of Engineering, Cambridge University, UK
John German – Senior Fellow, International Council on Clean Transportation, USA
Dr Marc Stettler – Centre for Transport Studies, Imperial College London, UK
Professor Martin Williams – Air Quality Scientist, King’s College London, UK

The ratings will be published and publically available for all, including manufacturers, consumers, local and national governments, and fleet operators.

Emissions Analytics sees this rating scheme as a positive contribution to the industry, shaken by recent scandals, and looks forward to working with a wide range of organisations as it launches.

Notes to Editors

About the NOx accreditation initiative

Emissions Analytics’ NOxaccreditation initiative for the European Union is designed to evaluate the performance of individual passenger cars in terms of tailpipe nitrogen oxide (NOx) emissions under real-world driving conditions.  The scheme will assess cars using objective performance criteria, recognising the best performers in emission levels through the ratings awarded.

The rating scheme will be separate from and independent of vehicle manufacturers’ certification tests. The results will be publicly available, with the aim of influencing policy development and implementation, allowing consumers to make informed purchase decisions and demonstrating the improvements that vehicle manufacturers are making to bring about improvements in air quality.

It is owned, funded and operated by Emissions Analytics, which will retain all rights associated with the results and ratings.

The rating scheme will formally launch in early 2016, with the publication of the first test results, covering vehicles launched in the previous year. Details of how the scheme will rate vehicles, and the wider process, will be published concurrently.

About Emissions Analytics

Emissions Analytics is a specialist in real-world, on-road vehicle emissions measurement and analysis, covering the European Union and the United States.  It offers subscription access to its database of test results, as well as bespoke services for product development and evaluation.  Its capabilities cover the measurement of regulated pollutants, including CO, CO2, NO, NO2, NOx, total hydrocarbons and particulate matter, using officially certified Portable Emissions Measurement Systems (PEMS).

Operating since 2011, it has carried out PEMS tests on more than 1000 model variants of passenger cars in addition to testing heavy goods vehicles, tractors, taxis, vans and buses. It pioneered the process of showing real-world emissions performance across a wide cross-section of vehicles, to demonstrate differences between laboratory certification tests and typical in-use performance.

Emissions Analytics has launched fuel economy services in the UK with What Car? (True MPG) and in the USA with Motor Trend (Real MPG) to provide consumers with an easy and reliable way to compare real-world fuel economy between cars.

Emissions Analytics works with a wide range of commercial, academic and research organisations to assist in product development, evaluating policy and transport planning.

For more information please contact:

Matt Sanger (Torque): 020 7952 1079, msanger@torqueagencygroup.com.
Alex Michaelides (Torque): 020 7952 1078, amichaelides@torqueagencygroup.com

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