Bharat Stage 6 (BS6) Emission Standards: Everything You Need To Know

If you live in New Delhi, then you would be among those people who are following the ongoing odd and even rule for cars. For those who stay in other parts of India and are unaware of this temporary regulation, it is a rationing measure by the Delhi Government to restrict private vehicles on roads on certain days of the week to curb pollution. For those who are still questioning this method, we have an interesting fact that will surely make you think otherwise, and that is-


—Apart from seasonal stubble burning, the other major contributors of air pollution are emission from vehicles, traffic congestion, and resuspended dust on the roads because of vehicle movement, construction activities, heavy industry including power generation, small-scale industries, and more. 



The above suggests the government needs to take immediate action in all areas, especially vehicles pollution to control deterioration in air quality that has been responsible for taking around 12.4 lakh deaths in 2017. For this, the Supreme court has taken significant measures in the recent past.From holding down on crop burning, which is currently contributing to the rising pollution levels in the Delhi-National Capital Region and other parts of North India, to imposing a ruling of making all vehicles environment-friendly.


As per the edict of the highest court in the country from April 1, 2020, Bharat Stage (BS) VI emission norm would come into force, and no BS-IV vehicle- light-duty, medium-duty and heavy-duty shall be sold across the country. This stringent move is a critical step towards cleaner fuel. 



To explain it further Bharat Stage Emission Standards (BSES) is based on European (EURO) emission standards to keep air pollutants emitted by the internal combustion engine of vehicles. It was introduced by the government in 2000 and has over the years been updated continuously with BS2 and BS3 in 2001 and 2005, respectively. However, it was in 2016; the government took a stricter action towards rising pollution from vehicular exhausts and announced that the country would skip the BS5 norm entirely and adopt BS6 standards by 2020.


So, today, we have for you a guide on everything you need to know about Bharat Stage 6 (BS6) Emission Standards for any vehicle-passenger cars, super luxury bus, etc. and some differences it has with the earlier norm of BS4-


  • BS6 will contain five times lesser sulphur content, 10 parts per million as against 50 ppm of BS4. Also, the Oxides of nitrogen (NOx) that is produced as a result of combustion will be brought down by 70 per cent for diesel, and 25 per cent for petrol engines. 


  • The upcoming BS6 will also have advanced technology that will enable real-time tracking of emissions for the first time in India. It will measure a vehicle's emission in real-time conditions against laboratory conditions.


  • Diesel Particulate Filter (DPF) and Selective Catalytic Reduction (SCR) are being introduced with the roll-out of Bharat Stage 6 norms, which were not a part of BS4. 


  • Onboard Diagnostics (OBD) device, i.e. the equipment that informs the vehicle owner or the technician of the efficiency of the systems in the vehicle has now become mandatory with the introduction of BS6. 


Though this is an essential step towards cleaner air, however, for the overall sector, this is a herculean task. The passenger automobile companies and cargo truck manufacturers adapting to meet the 2020 deadline will first have to clear their pending stock before the April 2020 deadline. Along with that, they will also have to invest in technology to develop an all-new engine that will comply with the BS6 norms. Alike the manufacturers, the petrol companies, will also have to make BS6 fuel available across the country.


Also Read: How Buses Are Key To Success For Improving Air Quality?



Also, a lot of questions and confusions will have to be cleared for the vehicle owners, before the final roll-out of the new BS6 compliant cars. This includes one query that is playing on everyone's mind, and that is if their car will get redundant or not? The answer to this is, for those customers with petrol variants, they don't have to worry too much. The reason, the lubricant for BS4 and BS6 have little difference in the chemical composition, and hence, a BS4 car can work with BS6 petrol. But, for those with diesel vehicles, the BS4 engine will not be able to support BS6 engine fully as the sulphur in these cars acts as a lubricant for diesel injector and the new engines will have lower traces of this chemical element. Thus, ultimately, the BS6 diesel engine will wear out quickly because of less sulphur.


Overall, April 01, 2020, will be a noteworthy day in India's automobile history, as the country will take a giant leap from BS4 to BS6 emission norms in a remarkable timeframe of just three and a half years of BS4. But, this momentous step will come with a hefty price tag. The customers who would be planning or will have to buy the BS6 compliant vehicles will have to shell out more money since the automakers are expected to pass on the additional cost to the buyers. 




A sigh of relief to the current car owners nevertheless is that the BS4 vehicles will not be banned after the introduction of BS6. In fact, all BS4 vehicles purchased until March 2020 will remain operational throughout registration. So, if you own a BS4 compliant car, you need not worry about selling it immediately and buy a BS6 compliant vehicle.


Recommended: How "Smart Electric" bus concept can be implemented at a scale?


Also, many passenger vehicle manufacturers like Maruti Suzuki have already updated its current line-up with 8 new BS6 ready petrol engine equipped cars. Even luxury car manufacturers Mercedes Benz is now offering the Mercedes Benz C Class, Mercedes Benz E Class and the Mercedes Benz V class as per the BS6 norms. Toyota, Mahindra, KIA, Hyundai and Jeep, are a few others who already have their line-up of BS6 vehicles ready. 


Now that you are aware of the BS6 guidelines and its importance for the current pollution scenario in India don't forget to tell us if you opted for a BS4 vehicle this year or halted your purchase for a BS6 car next year.


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