Letter to Stefan Jacoby, CEO, Volkswagen Group of America

Kai

Veteran Member
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Apr 15, 2004
Location
Kailua, Hawaii
TDI
2004 Jetta TDI wagon manual; 2006 Jetta TDI sedan manual
Mr. Stefan Jacoby, CEO
Volkswagen Group of America
2200 Ferdinand Porsche Dr.
Herndon, VA 20171
Dear Mr. Jacoby,
As a loyal Volkswagen (2004 Jetta TDI wagon) and Porsche (2007 Carrera S) owner, who has toured your facilities in Wolfsburg, Stuttgart, and Leipzig, I wanted to let you know how excited I was to see the new Jetta TDI Sportwagen, first in Europe badged as a Golf and then here in the US in 2009. It is a beautiful car that I subsequently test-drove and truly desired to own.
I ordered a 2009 Jetta TDI Sportwagen from my local dealer, Tony Volkswagen in Waipahu, but then did not purchase the car after learning that because of the post-injection strategy VW engineers chose to comply with 50-state US emissions standards, the new “clear diesel,” as it is called, is incapable of running any significant blend of biodiesel fuel.
To me, and to many others of like mind, this is a giant step backward for clean diesel technology and for the environment. And I am seriously disappointed in VW, whose TDI passenger cars heretofore have been the only ones in America capable of using biodiesel fuels. Like many TDI owners committed to using biodiesel, I have made the decision not the buy the new TDI, but instead to keep my older car that will run bio-blends from B20 to B100.
I hope that VW engineers will find a better strategy for meeting emissions standards in the next version of the TDI, enabling once again the use of biodiesel. I will be one of the first in line to buy one.
Sincerely yours,
 

tditom

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san antonio & austin
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formerly: 2001 Golf GL, '97 Passat (RIP) '98 NB, '05 B5 sedan
last i heard, VW was working with ASTM on the B20 spec and would be allowing use of that fuel in the near future.
 

GoFaster

Moderator at Large
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Biodiesel of the type traditionally produced by transesterification is a technological dead-end, and it's more difficult to comply with emission standards on a fuel of higher viscosity and with a higher flash point (e.g. biodiesel produced by transesterification). Given that VW can only sell vehicles that comply with emission standards ... you're barking up the wrong tree, but good luck with barking up the right one.
 

oilhammer

Certified Volkswagen Nut & Vendor
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Location
outside St Louis, MO
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There are just too many to list....
I think one their main reasons for this is that it may be too hard to insure all biofuels do in fact get the proper certifications and testing, etc. Not many people homebrewing petroleum based fuels, so it is a safe bet the refineries for such are adhering to a pretty strict set of standards. That means better control.

And when did VW ever endorse anything beyond B5 in any VAG diesel sold in the USA? Just because you run it in your older (pre-2009) TDI does not mean it is 'OK' to do so according to the manufacturer. I am not telling you NOT to do it, just saying it was never endorsed by VW before, so why whine about it now? :confused:
 

tditom

Top Post Dawg
Joined
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Location
san antonio & austin
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formerly: 2001 Golf GL, '97 Passat (RIP) '98 NB, '05 B5 sedan
here's the last thing I saw on the subject (june 2008):
ASTM approves B20 biodiesel standard
[FONT=Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]by Sam Abuelsamid[/FONT]

In a June 19 decision, the American Society for Testing and Materials International (ASTM) committee voted to approve three new standard specifications for commercial biodiesel fuels - including the widely anticipated first standard for fuel blends containing a 6 to 20 (B20) percent biodiesel component mixed with petroleum diesel.

Several automakers, including Chrysler and General Motors, have been supporting special fleet tests of trucks running on B20 blends for several years. But the lack of an ASTM standard for B20, aside from such special circumstances, has meant automakers have declined to provide powertrain warranty coverage for consumers choosing B20 to run their vehicles.

Previously, Volkswagen and Chrysler have each committed to validating diesel vehicles for B20 once a standard had been ratified, as well as providing warranty coverage on those powertrains. Chrysler has been shipping all diesel vehicles it manufactures from the factory filled with B5 for several years.

In addition to the new B20 standard, ASTM also voted to approve changes to two other existing standards. The ASTM D975 standard for conventional diesel has been modified to allow the blending of up to 5 percent biofuel. The ASTM D6751 specification for B100 used for blending into other fuels has been updated in conjunction with the B20 and conventional standards to ensure the quality of the biofuel component.

Automakers have not yet indicated when vehicles warranted for B20 use will be commercially available.

JUNE 2008
 

Lug_Nut

TDIClub Enthusiast, Pre-Forum Veteran Member
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idi: 1988 Bolens DGT1700H
Kai said:
Mr. Stefan Jacoby, CEO
Volkswagen Group of America
2200 Ferdinand Porsche Dr.
Herndon, VA 20171
Dear Mr. Jacoby,
...the new “clear diesel,”...
Clean diesel, not clear diesel...Boy I'll bet they're impressed with their ad budget expenditures now....

Emily Litella here, What's this with these nuclear diesels? Isn't the particle count enough of a problem without the radioactivity... What?...


Never mind!
 

Kai

Veteran Member
Joined
Apr 15, 2004
Location
Kailua, Hawaii
TDI
2004 Jetta TDI wagon manual; 2006 Jetta TDI sedan manual
Previously, Volkswagen and Chrysler have each committed to validating diesel vehicles for B20 once a standard had been ratified, as well as providing warranty coverage on those powertrains. Chrysler has been shipping all diesel vehicles it manufactures from the factory filled with B5 for several years.

This would be good news--a step in the right direction.
 

philngrayce

Veteran Member
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Location
Connecticut
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'02 Jetta, '06 Jetta, Both Gone '13 Leaf, Gone Liberty CRD, Subaru Forrester and MB300SD
Tell him to give us some AWD diesels too.
 

Drivbiwire

Zehntes Jahr der Veteran
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Oct 13, 1998
Location
Boise, Idaho
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2013 Passat TDI, Newmar Ventana 8.3L ISC 3945, 2016 E250 BT, 2000 Jetta TDI
The problem is I'm not seeing how US spec (Non Rapeseed) biodiesel can meet the oxidation requirements. They have been working on additives to improve the oxidation stability but so far it's not even close to meeting the engine requirements.
 

Kai

Veteran Member
Joined
Apr 15, 2004
Location
Kailua, Hawaii
TDI
2004 Jetta TDI wagon manual; 2006 Jetta TDI sedan manual
Reply from Executive Office of Volkswagen of America

I just got a call from Katie Fox, Mr. Jacoby's assistant at Volkswagen of America, to tell me they had received my letter and had forwarded it along with other similar letters to the people in the company currently discussing the issue of biofuels and the new "Clean Diesel" motor. She apologized for my disappointment at not being able to buy a new TDI and understood that for the mean time I would keep my older TDI that will run biodiesel. She said VW was aware that several states, such as Illinois, are considering mandating diesel fuel blends of B10 or B20, blends the new TDI is incapable of running. She did not say that a change was in the works, only that the issue is under discussion. So I assume that means that any change would be several model years away. Who knows? In the mean time, it wouldn't hurt to send a hard copy letter. See the first post above for name and address. Again, Mr. Jacoby's assistant is Katie Fox.
 
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