Questions and answers on the new ADR 80/04

Euro VI for heavy vehicles

What are the health benefits of the new ADR?

Noxious emissions from road vehicles (such as oxides of nitrogen and particulates) affect the quality of the air we breathe. Prolonged exposure to these air pollutants can increase the risk of heart and lung disease, cancer and premature death.

The new ADR is expected to reduce the burden of disease attributable to noxious emissions from heavy vehicles by $7.4 billion over the period to 2050. These benefits will increase over time as older vehicles are replaced with newer, cleaner vehicles.

When will the new ADR become mandatory?

ADR 80/04 will apply to all new heavy vehicles (passenger and commercial vehicles with a gross vehicle mass over 3.5 tonnes).

New Models

Heavy vehicle models approved and supplied to Australia for the first time on or after 1 November 2024 will need to comply.

Existing models

Heavy vehicle models approved and supplied to Australia before 1 November 2024 will also need to comply, if a manufacturer wishes to continue supplying this vehicle model to Australia on or after 1 November 2025.

Currently registered vehicles will not be affected by the new ADR and will not need to be retrofitted to remain on the road.

What are the key differences between Euro VI and the current ADR requirements?

The adoption of Euro VI will deliver the following benefits relative to Euro V:

  • an increase in the durability requirements for vehicle emissions control systems
  • a 70 per cent reduction in emissions limits for hydrocarbons (HC)
  • a 77-80 per cent reduction in the emissions limits for oxides of nitrogen (NOx)
  • a 50-66 per cent reduction in the mass emissions limits for particulates
  • the introduction of a limit on the number of particles to control fine particle emissions
  • improved emissions tests (laboratory and on-road) to ensure reductions in emissions are also realised during normal operation on the road
  • more stringent requirements for on-board diagnostic systems that monitor the emissions control systems, including a reduction in the thresholds at which a malfunction warning is detected and an increased frequency of monitoring (in-use performance ratio).

Table 1 outlines the key changes in emissions limits from Euro V to Euro VI.

Table 1  Euro V and Euro VI emissions limits for heavy diesel vehicles
Emission Euro V
(Stationary Cycle1)
Euro V
(Transient Cycle2)
Euro VI
(Stationary Cycle)
Euro VI
(Transient Cycle)
Oxides of nitrogen (NOx) 2,000 mg/kWh 2,000 mg/kWh 400 mg/kWh
(80% lower)
460 mg/kWh
(77% lower)
Particulate matter 20 mg/kWh 30 mg/kWh 10 mg/kWh
(50% lower)
10 mg/kWh
(66% lower)

Which stage of Euro VI is being adopted?

The new ADR 80/04 will adopt the Stage C requirements. Further analysis after stakeholder feedback was received in 2021 found Stage C would enable an earlier introduction and achieve a higher net benefit than the original option canvassed in 2020 (Stage D).

Will Australia continue to accept equivalent US and Japanese standards for heavy vehicle emissions?

ADR 80/04 will accept vehicles meeting US emission requirements from 2013 onwards and vehicles meeting Japanese emission requirements from 2017 onwards.

When will the text of the ADR be available?

The text of ADR 80/04 can be accessed on the Federal Register of Legislation.

Will the introduction of Euro VI improve fuel efficiency and reduce CO2 emissions?

The emission control technologies required for Euro VI will not directly improve fuel efficiency or reduce CO2 emissions.

However, as manufacturers are required to reduce CO2 and noxious emissions concurrently in other markets, Australia may gain access to more fuel-efficient engines. Truck and bus manufacturers have advised that their latest Euro VI engines are up to 10 per cent more fuel efficient than previous Euro V models.

Some noxious emissions, such as nitrous oxide, are also more potent greenhouse gases than CO2. The introduction of Euro VI will also help reduce these greenhouse gas emissions.

How will the introduction of Euro VI impact on trucking operators?

The technology required to meet Euro VI will increase the cost of supplying a new truck or bus to Australia by 3 to 5 per cent or $4,000-$6,000. Impacts on purchase prices will depend on exchange rates, supply chains and other changes made as part of a model update. However, these costs are likely to be offset over the life of the vehicle, as the introduction of Euro VI will also enable manufacturers to supply more fuel-efficient engines available in other markets with equivalent standards.

Euro VI trucks are heavier than equivalent Euro V trucks due to the additional mass and space required by the additional emission systems. This may reduce the amount of freight they can legally carry.

The National Heavy Vehicle Regulator and National Transport Commission (NTC) are working with government and industry stakeholders to progress reforms to mass limits to ensure trucks with advanced safety and emissions do not risk a productivity penalty.

In February 2022, the Australian Government and state and territory governments agreed in principle to increase in truck width limits from 2.5 metres to 2.55 metres for trucks fitted with advanced safety features. The Government is continuing to evaluate the impacts of this proposed reform before a final decision is taken to amend the relevant Australian Design Rules.

What was the consultation process for this ADR?

A draft regulation impact statement ‘Heavy Vehicle Emission Standards for Cleaner Air’ was released for public consultation from October 2020 to February 2021. Comments were sought from stakeholders representing vehicle manufacturers, heavy vehicle operators and the broader community. Further discussions were also held with industry stakeholders that made submissions to consider their feedback in more detail.

The feedback received in response to this paper and the subsequent consultations were used to determine the final approach recommended for adoption by the Australian Government.

1 A stationary cycle test is performed at steady engine speeds, similar to highway operation

2 A transient cycle test is performed at more variable engine speeds, similar to city operation