Biodiesel will be critical to the success of diesel-powered vehicles in the US market, according to Loren Beard, Senior Manager—Fuels for DaimlerChrysler.
Beard made the remarks while addressing a conference on the fuel savings, air quality, and health benefits of biodiesel in Washington, DC hosted by the American Lung Association and the National Biodiesel Board.
DaimlerChrysler will continue to expand its lineup of diesel-powered vehicles in the coming months, at the same time it broadens its programs to educate the American public on the benefits of home-grown biodiesel fuel.
Diesel will be good for America, and biodiesel makes diesel better. Emissions of particulates—an important issue in congested urban areas—can be reduced more than 80% with modern, clean diesel engines running on biodiesel. Use of biodiesel extends the benefits of diesel technology.—Loren Beard
Beard reported that B20 (20 percent biodiesel blended in conventional diesel fuel) can reduce particulate matter emissions by up to 15%.
DaimlerChrysler will market five 45-state diesel-powered passenger vehicles in the U.S. in 2007: Jeep Grand Cherokee CRD sport-utility vehicle with 3.0-liter diesel engine; Mercedes-Benz E320 luxury sedan with 3.0-liter engine and BlueTec emissions technology; and three new Mercedes-Benz utility vehicles, R320 CDI, ML320 CDI, and GL320 CDI. In addition, the Dodge Ram pickup and Dodge Sprinter van are also equipped with diesel engines for the US market.
The company is targeting three Tier 2 Bin 5 vehicles (50-state) by 2008. (Earlier post.)
The new Jeep Grand Cherokee diesel, like its predecessor the Jeep Liberty CRD, will be delivered to customers running on B5 biodiesel fuel. The Dodge Ram diesel is also approved for use with B5 fuel.
This fall, DaimlerChrysler will begin testing B20 biodiesel fuel in the Ram with its commercial, government and military fleet customers. The company is also working with Michigan State University researchers, the US EPA, the State of Michigan, NextEnergy, and the National Biodiesel Board to develop better biodiesel fuel crops.