Policy update

China’s Stage VI emissions standard for heavy-duty vehicles (final rule)

On June 28, 2018, the Ministry of Ecology and Environment (MEE) of the People’s Republic of China released the final rule for the China VI emission standard for heavy-duty vehicles. The China VI standard will be implemented in two phases. China VI-a will take effect on July 1, 2019 for new gas-powered heavy-duty vehicles (HDVs), on July 1, 2020 for new urban HDVs, and July 1, 2021 for the remaining new HDVs. China VI-b will take effect on January 1, 2021 for new gas-powered HDVs, then on July 1, 2023 for all new HDVs. When fully implemented, China VI will require all new HDVs sold in China to meet the standard.

Unlike the previous standard phases, which closely followed the European emission standards, the China VI standard combines best practices from both European and U.S. regulatory requirements, in addition to creating its own. China VI-a is largely equivalent to Euro VI, and China VI-b introduces slightly more stringent testing requirements and a remote emission monitoring system.

The China VI standard is one of the most stringent HDV emission standards adopted to date. Full implementation of the China VI HDV standard will bring China in line with standards in the US, Canada, Japan, and EU. The implementation of the China VI emission standard for heavy-duty vehicles is a critical measure to clean up diesel emissions and a key step on the path to winning the “war against air pollution” in China. Regions struggling with severe air quality or cleaner regions with an ambition to achieve world-class air quality levels have taken actions to move faster on controlling emissions from on-road vehicles.

This policy update provides further details about some of these features, a comparison with emission regulations in the other major markets, and a summary of the impact of this rule.

Timeline of HDV emission regulation in major markets