What is it?
In a nutshell, this is where Peugeot’s 308 C-segment hatchback – its best effort yet at challenging the Volkswagen Golf and Ford Focus – meets an all-new range of cleaner, more powerful and more frugal diesels, grouped under the BlueHDi brand name.
If you read newspapers, you’ll already know that turbodiesel engines have been losing their lustre, the decline accompanied by a lot of florid, they’re-killing-our-kids headlines. The truth is, oil burners have always been good news for helping to keep CO2 outputs respectable, but until recently many have given too free a rein to other exhaust pollutants, especially particulates and oxides of nitrogen.
Peugeot, a leader in diesel research from way back, has been fitting exhaust particulate traps on its cars since 2007. Its latest step is to unveil a new diesel family, BlueHDi, which uses a new three-element emission control technology to cut pollutants back to stricter Euro 6 levels that are coming soon. It boosts power and torque into the bargain; the company’s engine men claim it as “the most efficient emission control system on the market”.
A handy way of judging the effectiveness of BlueHDi, is to compare Peugeot’s current 1.6-litre e-HDi-engined 308 (115bhp, 95g/km CO2 and 76.3mpg combined) with the new BlueHDi version (120bhp, 82g/km and 91.1mpg combined), and then factor in the knowledge that the newer one already complies with Euro 6 emissions standards that don’t take effect until January 2016. It’s an impressive step forward.