ADAC EcoTest was published for the first time in 2003 to provide consumers with comprehensive information on the eco-friendliness of cars. It relies on real-life testing of cars that goes beyond applicable legal requirements. The EcoTest evaluates not only CO2 emissions, but also pollutant emissions (HC, CO, NOx, particulate matter and particle number). To make it clear that EcoTest is not based on the evaluation of CO2 alone, the toxic components of exhaust emissions are also included under the heading “pollutants”. The EcoTest procedure has been well-received by consumers and manufacturers throughout Europe as a comparative test and will continue to be available with its familiar star rating system.
Nine years have passed and new legal standards (Euro 5 and Euro 6) and advances in automotive technology have made it necessary to adapt or tighten the EcoTest testing and assessment protocol so as to reflect the state-of-the-art.
Protecting the environment one star
at a time
EcoTest we test passenger cars with different drive-trains on the basis of a
We have been testing the environmental soundness of numerous vehicles of various
classes and sizes (Vehicle
classes). Our testing clearly exceeds legal requirements and provides independent results.
The more stars a vehicle wins, the more environmentally sound it is. The scoring system allows for a five-star maximum rating.
additional tests and strict standards
is based on the New European Driving Cycle (NEDC),
a prerequisite for type approval in the EU. In addition, we also test the
environmental performance in more diverse cycles. Our tests include the ADAC
Motorway Cycle, testing the behaviour of vehicles on a motorway with
the air condition on, as well as the WLTP (Worldwide harmonized Light
vehicles Test Procedure) with the air condition on.
EcoTest rates pollutant
emissions (carbon monoxide CO, hydrocarbons HC, nitrogen oxides NOx, particulate
matter) and the emissions of the greenhouse gas
carbon monoxide CO2. Some of the standards are more stringent than
required by law. Whereas by law there are different emission levels for petrol
and diesel cars, under EcoTest the same levels apply for all drive-train types. In order
to apply the same standards to electric vehicles and plug-in hybrids (power-plant emissions
are taken into account) as to vehicles with a combustion engine, new assessments will include
all CO2 emissions from “well to wheel”. According to this approach, the measured CO2 emissions
(tank to wheel values) will be added to the CO2 emissions generated in providing the fuel (well to tank).