The Worldwide harmonized Light vehicles Test Procedure WLTP will be modified again in September: The most important questions and answers about the upcoming changes.
What is the WLTP again?
Legislators are implementing standardized test procedures for the type approval of new vehicles. The exhaust gas and CO2 emissions of the vehicles will be measured, as well as fuel consumption. In electric vehicles, electricity consumption will be measured. In the European Union, this procedure was previously based on the New European Driving Cycle (NEDC) until 2017. This was replaced by the WLTP cycle last year, which will generate more realistic data.
Why are we talking about this again this year?
The introduction of the second act of the WLTP in 2019 will result in changes that take effect from September 1. Essentially, the test cycle is being intensified with new technical requirements. The fact that the WLTP is being implemented in stages is due to the complexity of the matter. The new regulations will also flesh out the existing process and thereby provide legal certainty.
What will change, specifically?
The intensification of the testing process is complex. To name a few examples, an activated carbon filter in the tank system prevents gasoline fumes from being emitted into the environment. Previously, this was tested in an airtight chamber over the course of 24 hours. In the future, the test will last 48 hours – using the same threshold values. To ensure compliance with emissions standards during operation, vehicles up to five years old will be subject to WLTP testing on a random selection basis. In future, the tests will not only be performed in a test facility, but also on the road.
What does this mean for Volkswagen?
This year, all vehicles need to go through renewed type approval. Compared with the previous NEDC test cycle, the WLTP takes two-and-a-half times as long. In addition, light commercial vehicles will switch from the NEDC to the WLTP for the first time this year. The 27 roller dynamometers at the Wolfsburg test center have been running at peak capacity for weeks.
Will 2019 be as challenging as 2018?
“Volkswagen has learned a lot from the experiences of the last year. Less popular model variants have been discontinued, and processes, capacities and IT systems have been optimized. We are confident that we will be able to significantly reduce the impact of the new WLTP 2nd act compared to last year,” says Jürgen Franke, Head of GL WLTP Management.