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A better way to measure fuel consumption

Applicable to Volkswagen New Zealand new models only, with derivatives type approved under WLTP, as listed below.

New Touareg (see spec sheet for details)

WLTP revises consumption values.

The New European Drive Cycle (NEDC) has been superseded by the adoption of the European Union’s Worldwide Harmonised Light-Duty Vehicles Test Procedure (WLTP) in 2017. This is a worldwide standardised testing procedure for estimating fuel consumption and exhaust emissions. Find out what this means for you and your Volkswagen. Due to the change in testing parameters, the CO2 and fuel consumption values obtained under WLTP may be higher than those obtained under NEDC testing.

What is WLTP?

WLTP stands for Worldwide Harmonised Light-Duty Vehicles Test Procedure. This worldwide harmonised testing procedure for light-duty vehicles describes a new testing method to estimate a vehicle’s fuel consumption. This procedure is based on real recorded driving data. In future, it will help to simulate realistic driving even under laboratory conditions. That is why WLTP not only takes into consideration various situations and speeds but also a vehicle’s different equipment variants and weight classes.

What does WLTP mean for me? 

The new WLTP testing regime is still a laboratory-based standardised test but it seeks to provide more realistic testing conditions and a more accurate basis for assessing a vehicle model's fuel consumption and emissions figures. In essence, the aim is to ensure that test conditions better reflect real-world driving.

CO2 emissions and/or fuel consumption figures for vehicles (if tested under WLTP) may increase compared to those NEDC figures that are available now. 

Good reasons for WLTP.

Using real driving data collected worldwide, WLTP aims to deliver more realistic consumption values. Read and find out what changes with the introduction of the new testing procedure.

Learn more about the WLTP.

The actual real-world consumption of a vehicle will differ from the manufacturer's specifications using the New European Driving Cycle (NEDC) test that was previously required by law. That is why the reliability of the results measured using the (NEDC) has often been criticised. This is due to the fact that real consumption is highly dependent on individual driving behaviour and the vehicle’s equipment. One example is whether a vehicle is primarily used in the inner city, on rural roads or the highway. To address these differences, the theoretical framework of the NEDC has been revised to reflect a more dynamic driving profile. Drawing on statistical surveys and the analysis of average user profiles, this profile features higher acceleration, a higher average speed and a higher maximum speed. Instead of combining simulated urban and extra-urban driving, the vehicle is now tested in four different speed ranges. The new test is known as WLTP, which stands for Worldwide Harmonised Light-Duty Vehicles Test Procedure.

The exhaust and consumption values measured as per WLTP must be specified for all new models launched as of 1st September 2018. This applies in Europe and many other countries worldwide.


New test parameters target more realistic values. Read and find out exactly how the procedures differ.

The new testing procedure has a modified driving cycle and stricter test specifications. These include a longer time span for the measurement along with a higher maximum speed. The new changes at a glance:

The new changes at a glance:

Four-speed ranges are measured on the roller dynamometer after a cold start: up to 60, up to 80, up to 100 and above 130 km/h. The vehicle brakes and accelerates repeatedly within these phases. The maximum speed is, thus, 10 km an hour higher than the NEDC. In addition, the average speed of approximately 47 km/h is also significantly higher (previously approx. 33 km/h). A temperature of 23°C is specified for the testing chamber. Previously, the NEDC required 20-30° C. The entire WLTP driving cycle lasts approximately 30 minutes. In contrast, the NEDC only requires 20 minutes. The distance has been more than doubled to 23 instead of 11 kilometres. Unlike the NEDC, WLTP takes into account specific optional extras and how they influence the weight, aerodynamics and energy consumption (standby current). Optional extras that consume energy such as the air-conditioning or seat heating remain switched off during the testing process.

An overview of WLTP.

The Worldwide Harmonized Light-Duty Vehicles Test Procedure or WLTP is a worldwide standard for testing passenger vehicles and light commercial vehicles. As of 1st September 2017, it aims to provide more realistic consumption specifications with its considerably more dynamic testing parameters.

More details of WLTP.

  • The temperature in the testing chamber is 23°C.
  • The distance is 23 km.
  • The cycle takes 30 minutes.
  • It consists of four phases (low, medium, high, extra-high).
  • The average speed is approximately 47 km/h.
  • The idle proportion is 13%.
  • The maximum speed is above 130 km/h. The switching points are calculated individually in advance for each vehicle.
  • The vehicle weight and additional equipment are factored into the analysis.All possible engine and transmission combinations are measured

Questions and answers.

What is a driving cycle?

A driving cycle defines the requirements and conditions for measuring a vehicle’s fuel consumption and CO2 emissions. The goal is to simulate a realistic, average journey with the vehicle. The driving cycle specifies certain conditions such as the starting temperature, speed and measurement duration to ensure that the manufacturers can provide comparable values when registering and selling a vehicle.

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What is the NEDC?

The New European Driving Cycle (NEDC) was introduced by the European Union on 01.07.1992. It was intended to guarantee a standardised means for better comparability between vehicle-specific consumption. However, it does not claim to reflect the actual day-to-day consumption.

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What is the WLTP?

The Worldwide Harmonized Light-Duty Vehicles Test Procedure or WLTP was introduced in September 2017. The WLTP aims to utilise a profile more similar to actual daily driving behaviour than the previous NEDC standard. The new procedure is intended to provide a more realistic representation of a vehicle’s consumption. This is based on a modified test cycle with stricter test specifications.

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What is the difference between NEDC and WLTP?

The NEDC testing cycle introduced by the European Union in 1992 is outdated and cannot accurately represent the individual, day-to-day driving behaviour. In contrast, the new WLTP standard aims to ensure that the consumption values measured during a model’s type approval testing are more realistic. That is why both the procedure and the driving cycle differ from the NEDC standard. For example, the redefined test parameters include a longer testing distance, longer driving times, shorter idle times and higher average speeds. They also take into consideration optional extras. These new parameters generally result in higher consumption specifications.

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