BMW Debuts Standard Incorrect Fuelling Protection System For Diesel Models

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So BMW, being everso German and everso efficient have now made a system standard on all their diesel models to prevent you from putting the wrong kind of fuel in the tank.

BMW touts this as being the manufacturer-equipped system to \”prevent cases of misfuelling at the pump and its far-reaching consequences.\” Right. If you\’ve ever put gasoline in a diesel, or even worse put diesel into a gas-burning car, you know what a HUGE mistake this is. Tank, fuel lines, injectors … those are ALL coming out, getting cleaned, blown out, run through the parts washer, and in a lot of cases replaced at great cost to you.

You only have to be around this kind of mistake once, or even worse, make this mistake yourself once to never, ever do it again.

But seriously, just how dumb does BMW think we are? Well let\’s see.

Look, I understand, mistakes can happen, but just how much of a brain dead pump-jockey do you have to be to do something like but unleaded into a diesel tank? Not only are things color-coded but the nozzles are completely different sizes. You have to work hard to screw it up … but this is, after all, America. The country that invented the term \”fool proof\”, and invented it with good reason.

Remember a few years ago when Honda had to do a recall for seatbelt buckles coming unlatched? Honda found out that it wasn\’t the buckles, they were using the same type worldwide. The found out that it was the \”typical American driver\” who would do things like swing by the drive through for the 16th time that week, and bits of lettuce and French fry would fall into the seat belt buckle and cause it to fail.

You think Honda had a shot at explaining that as a justifiable reason to the feds? Yeah, good luck with that. Honda had to do a complete redesign to compensate for the brains connected to our couch-shaped asses.

So, I can understand where BMW is coming from. You can all most see the engineering review meeting back in Der Fatherland.

\”Zo, vee vill be pressing ahead mit out plans to roll out the neu diesels into the North American market, jah?\”

\”Jah, but vait a moment. Ve are going to zell the diesel to ze Americans?\”

\”Jah.\”

\”Do ze know how to properly fill ze tank?\”

\”Good point! Dieter! Get ze boys down in R und D to rig up some devices to help them mit der proper fueling procedure. MACH SCHNEL!!\”

Here\’s BMW\’s press release:

INCORRECT FUELLING PROTECTION SYSTEM AS STANDARD FOR ALL BMW DIESEL MODELS
01/30/2009

Munich. BMW is the first car manufacturer to equip all new diesel-powered models with an Incorrect Fuelling Protection System as standard equipment. The innovative system helps prevent cases of misfuelling at the pump and its far-reaching consequences. A special mechanism fitted to the filler neck prevents drivers from accidentally inserting the fuel filler nozzle of a standard unleaded gasoline pump into the filler neck of a diesel-powered car. This technology has been tried-and-tested in a variety of BMW models with diesel engines and will now be fitted to all diesel-powered BMW models, including the 335d Sedan and X5 xDrive35d now on sale in the US, right from the factory.
Every year, the German AA has to provide technical support in more than 5,000 cases of diesel misfuelling. Rectifying the consequences of incorrect fuelling is not just time consuming, it may also involve major costs. Even if the driver realizes their mistake before starting the engine, emptying and cleaning the fuel tank, pipes and the pump as well as changing the filter will be unavoidable.

The high number of cases of misfuelling shows that just a short moment of inattention suffices to select the wrong fuel filler nozzle at the gas station. Particularly drivers who frequently use different cars from rental companies or company fleets often have to pay extra attention – more so, since the performance profile and acoustic insulation measures of modern diesel engines reduce the differences between diesel and gasoline-powered engines to a minimum. The difference in fuel filler nozzle diameter often prevents accidentally filling petrol engines with their narrower filler neck with diesel fuel, but during hasty filling manoeuvres, the filler nozzle for unleaded gasoline can easily and mistakenly be inserted into the filler neck of standard diesel models.

However BMW will help drivers to avoid making this mistake. The Incorrect Fuelling Protection System fitted to all BMW diesel-powered models is designed to allow only filler nozzles for diesel fuel to enter the filler neck. The filler neck of these models is fitted with a locking system that can only be released by a standardized diesel filler nozzle. An unleaded gasoline nozzle with its smaller diameter cannot make the same connection and its access is blocked.

The Incorrect Fuelling Protection System is also designed for fuelling under exceptional circumstances, when the diesel-powered model may have to be fuelled from a spare can. Narrow recesses on the outer walls of the filler neck allow the introduction of smaller amounts of fuel. Using a container for re-fuelling requires extra care, which serves to remind the driver of ensuring that they use the right type of fuel.

About The Author

Tony Borroz grew up in a sportscar oriented family, but sadly, it was British cars. His knuckles still show the marks of slipped Whitworth sockets, strains to reach upper rear shock bushings on Triumphs, and slight burn marks from dealing with Lucas Electric "systems." He has written for a variety of car magazines and websites, Automoblog chief among them. Tony has worked on popular driving games as a content expert, in addition to working for aerospace companies, software giants, and as a movie stuntman. He currently lives in a secure, undisclosed location in the American southwestern desert.

1 Comment on "BMW Debuts Standard Incorrect Fuelling Protection System For Diesel Models"

  1. Andrew

    Ford fit a similar system, EasyFuel, to their European diesels, and I believe they got there before BMW. My Focus TDCi (new in June 2008) has the system.

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