Diesel R33 contains 26 % renewable diesel (HVO, classified as advanced biofuels) produced by Neste. It also contains 7 % conventional biodiesel (FAME) manufactured by other partners, as well as 67 % fossil diesel. Neither the car nor the filling station require any modifications to use this blend. Due to its 26% share of HVO-type diesel, the blend offers by far the highest biofuel content of any diesel blend fulfilling and exceeding the requirements for diesel fuels used in the European Union. The maximum limit for adding FAME-type biofuel to fossil fuel under the EU’s Fuel Quality Directive and the EN 590 diesel standard is 7 %. The fuel has a 33 % renewable composition, hence the R33 in its name.
The Diesel R33 concept was jointly developed by Volkswagen, Wolfsburg, Germany, and Coburg University, Germany, in cooperation with Shell, The Hague, Netherlands, Neste, and Tecosol, Ochsenfurt, Germany. Since 2014, research has been done on this fuel. The companies claim that their innovative fuel enables CO2 savings of at least 20 % compared to conventional fossil diesel. Following a nine-month test phase at Volkswagen, Diesel R33 is now being used at the German automaker’s filling stations in Wolfsburg. A test operation has begun at the Volkswagen plant in Salzgitter, Germany.
The renewable part of Diesel R33 comes mainly from waste and residues, such as those used to fry potato chips, that have been filtered and cleaned. The second part of converting cooking fat into fuel is to process it into a paraffin mixture. This is added on top of the regular fuel, on a one-to-three ratio.
- Neste Corporation, Espoo, Finland