VW, Delphi develop 'greenest' diesel system

By Ron Kotrba | April 26, 2010
Posted May 11, 2010

Troy, Mich.-based Delphi Corp. and Volkswagen have developed what is being called one of the greenest diesel systems ever produced, with the new 1.2-liter, 3-cylinder VW Polo BlueMotion-a vehicle with exceptionally low CO2 emissions and fuel consumption featuring a highly refined powertrain "built for performance," Delphi stated.

Car and Driver reviewed the VW Polo BlueMotion and, regarding its performance, wrote, "This Polo is comfortable and at least has enough power to merge into traffic safely. The tiny engine gets a bit harsh when you follow the gearshift indicator slavishly. Just when you think the engine has reached happy rev levels, it suggests you upshift. VW insists the engine doesn't mind, but it does feel-and sound-a bit strange to shift the five-speed manual into top gear at 30 mph."

Delphi supplies its Multec Diesel Common Rail System for the new fuel-efficient vehicle.

"Our customers are downsizing their engines to meet stringent CO2 requirements," said Michael Gassen, general director for Delphi Powertrain Systems and Delphi Europe, Sales & Marketing. "The new Volkswagen 3-cylinder Common Rail diesel engine allows Delphi to demonstrate the great potential of our solenoid-based fuel injection system technology. This is Delphi's first diesel Common Rail program with Volkswagen, and it is on a vehicle that is now the most economical five-seater with the lowest emissions and the 2010 World Car of the Year. This is an excellent match for our technology."

With 75 horsepower at 4,000 RPM, the VW Polo BlueMotion gets about 71 miles per gallon-leaving hybrids in the dust in terms of fuel mileage-but Americans hungry for this diesel-sipping phenom are out of luck since it is not for sale in the states.

Delphi's Multec Common Rail System, launched in 2000 featuring a balanced valve fast servo-solenoid injector, supports downsizing concepts while maintaining competitive cost and performance criteria.

The common rail system on VW Polo BlueMotion includes the latest evolution of solenoid-type diesel common rail injector technology with Delphi's next generation DFP6 fuel pump. This combination allows for just 87 g/km of CO2 emissions.

"Delphi's new common rail system provides significantly improved fuel delivery control, extended multiple injection capability, enhanced spray atomization and air mixing," said John Fuerst, general manager with Delphi Diesel Systems. "The system in this vehicle can deliver up to six injection events per combustion cycle, which translates into a very smooth combustion process and therefore lowers the NVH (noise, vibration and harshness) levels."

As well as optimized combustion, the injection efficiency of the system is improved through reduced parasitic losses, reduced component mass, improved energy consumption and hydraulic performance. Delphi stated that, because of this, its common rail system will suit future generations of downsized engines in a range of vehicle classes.
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