BMW Gets Green Light from EPA for 2017 Diesel Models
Certification on Mercedes-Benz, VW Models Still Pending
The Volkswagen diesel emissions cheating scandal had a chilling effect on diesel passenger car sales across the board, with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) suddenly putting light duty diesels under much closer scrutiny for emissions compliance. Consequently, several brands that feature diesel-powered models have been suspended from selling current model-year diesels. However, the agency has given BMW its stamp of approval for 2017-model-year diesels, Reuters reports. Chris Grundler, head of the EPA’s Office of Transportation and Air Quality, said the vehicles were thoroughly tested and found to be in compliance with U.S. emissions requirements.
BMW currently sells five diesel models -- or seven if you count the xDrive all-wheel-drive models as separate variants. The 328d sedan and wagon, 535d, X3 and X5 are all offered with a diesel powertrain option. The previous-generation 7 Series was offered with a diesel in the 740Ld through the 2015 model year in the U.S. market. The new G11/G12 7 Series is offered with a diesel option in some global markets. However, no official plans to bring a new diesel 7 Series to the U.S. have been officially announced.
In regard to certification of other manufacturer’s diesel models, including Mercedes-Benz, Grundler only said “discussions continue.” VW has reportedly not asked for certification of 2017 diesel models, casting doubt on the future of the TDI sub-brand in the U.S. market.