Len-you're not quite reading it correctly. When they say it will damage the vehicles and engines, they are referring only to the 2007 certified engines that are coming out. These engines will start to appear around March or April of '07 since ALL of the engine manufacturers are madly making '04 certified engines to over populate the market with these. As I understand, it is considered to be an engine if it is a block with crankshaft in it. At least at Freightliner, trucks are going to be made into calender year 2007 with the 2004 engines still in them. The new smog laws that go into effect are determined by when the engine was made. So when the engines are finally started after Jan. 1, 2007, they won't filter into the trucks until the second quarter of '07.
As to the damaging part, it doesn't refer to the older engines. Believe me when I say that the petroleum companies have been working a long time perfecting additives so the older engines will run seamlessly without mishap. I've already run some in my car and don't see any difference. By Sept all fuel stations have to be switched over so that by Jan 1, 2007 the fuel supply tanks, pipes, pumps have been rinsed of the older 500ppm fuel.
What the potentially damaging part of this is that in the new engines, all the manufacturers, except Caterpillar, are using exhaust catalysts with particulate traps built into the muffler. In the catalyst is platinum and other rare metals that together produce the reaction necessary to burn off the excess exhaust gases. Sulphur will coat the rare metals and render them inoperative. So there is where the term "Its use may damage these vehicles and engines" refers to.
If you remember back a few years when we went to the low sulphur 500ppm, there were some engines that had O ring problems since they relied on the sulphur to keep them lubed up. Since most of those problems were taken care of since then, the only other problem is the lubricity of the new fuel-which the fuel companies have compensated for with the new 15ppm fuel. In Europe, they have been running ultra low sulphur Diesel now for over 5 years without problem. Now it seems that Europe is ahead of us in the smog technologies. Actually for that matter, they are WAY ahead of us in the heavy duty truck industry as far as drivability and technology in their big rigs. Just for example-we still use non synchronized transmissions that europe hasn't had now for 10 years. Their big transmissions are either fully synchronized like a car, or they are semi automated or fully automated. And since the vast majority of cars in europe have manual transmission still, it isn't such a jump to drive a truck. Whereas, most all of our cars are automatic, and with the double clutching non synchrohed transmissions we have, it is no wonder that the truck companies are having a hard time finding drivers, or giving up and resorting to some type of automated transmission so now the drivers only have to push the gas, steer the truck, and stop it.
Also now with the ultra low sulphur Diesel coming in, and the fact that fuel just keeps creaping up in price, you can bet that you're going to see an influx of Diesel powered vehicles coming from across the sea, since in europe over 50% of the cars are Diesel powered. New engines with the common rail electronic fuel injection are very quiet, produce no smoke and drive like a gas car. I delivered a truck with a new Cummins ISC 300hp with the Allison 3000HS, it was freaky quiet, sounded almost like a gas engine idling. So much for that old Diesel roar! Good Luck, TomC