Partial-Zero Emissions Vehicle?

pilot1226pilot1226 Member Posts: 166
edited March 2014 in Subaru
I test drove the `08 Legacy 2.5i SE about 2 weeks ago, and I just remembered (I took pictures of the car's exterior and interior) there is a decal on the back regarding PZEV.

I noticed that the smog putout by the car is 0.1 tons, which is very good, and I imagine that's because of tough emissions laws for the cars in the NJ area.

My question is - should I be aware of anything "special" regarding PZEV, such as more costly or more often repairs to the exhaust system? Just replaced the muffler and exhaust pipes on the undercarriage of my `00 Civic, I don't mind because it was 8 years old and a relatively cheap fix at 150.


  • pilot1226pilot1226 Member Posts: 166
    Answered my own question:

    PZEVs have their own administrative category within the state of California for low emission vehicles.

    This vehicle category was created as part of a bargain with the California Air Resources Board (CARB), so that the automobile manufacturers could postpone producing mandated zero emission vehicles (ZEVs), which will require the production of electric vehicles or hydrogen fuel cell vehicles.

    The vehicles constructed to meet the PZEV requirements also fall within the Super Ultra Low Emission Vehicles (SULEV)-category. Various techniques are used to reduce pollution in these vehicles. In order to qualify as a PZEV, a vehicle must meet the SULEV standard and, in addition, have zero evaporative emissions from its fuel system plus an extended (15-year/150,000-mile) warranty on its emission-control components, which incidentally covers the propulsion electrical components of a hybrid electric vehicle.

    Some vehicles can be classified as AT-PZEV, standing for Advanced Technology PZEV. This type of vehicle is just as clean as a PZEV vehicle, but gets much better fuel efficiency due to the use of hybrid electric vehicle systems. This technology can also be used in a Sport Utility Vehicle to improve their traditionally lower fuel economy; however they may still lag behind the efficiency of smaller vehicles.

    With the exception of some hybrids and alternative-fuel vehicles, PZEVs do not come with any incentives other than the extended emissions warranty for buyers from either federal or state government. In particular, PZEV vehicles do not automatically qualify for the hybrid vehicle tax credit or for the "clean air vehicle" decal that allows hybrid car drivers to use car-pool lanes.[2]

    You can only buy car models that meet PZEV standards if you live in California, Maine, Massachusetts, New York, or Vermont — or in some sales regions near these states. These five "clean car states" have implemented California's more stringent motor vehicle pollution control rules. Other states will soon begin implementing these standards, including Connecticut, New Jersey, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, and Washington. The reasoning is surmised that while modifications only cost $200 for the consumer, it costs as much as $1,500 for the automaker. If the car companies passed on the entire expense, it could hinder sales and slow the automaker's compliance with ultra-low-emission laws.[3]
  • ateixeiraateixeira Member Posts: 72,587
    Actually, you're covered for 150,000 miles on emissions equipment, since that's the warranty for PZEV models only. So you actually have less to worry about.

    I'm in MD, which is not a PZEV state, but I went out of the way to order one specifically, believe it or not. :shades:
  • pilot1226pilot1226 Member Posts: 166
    That's awesome. Can you tell me what parts the PZEV warranty covers?
  • ateixeiraateixeira Member Posts: 72,587
    Ironically, in MD, where I live, none. Because it's not a PZEV state.

    But state laws in PZEV states mean all emissions related items are covered. Basically it has to pass emissions inspection for the first 150,000 miles.

    If anything, it would make sense for Subaru to use more durable emissions related euqipment on the PZEV models.

    On the PZEV Forester, you get a bonus - 5 extra horsepower. :shades:
  • cptpltcptplt Member Posts: 1,075
    I ordered one for IL. the PZEV warranty only holds in PZEV mandated states otherwise you get the regular warranty on the emissions, you can get a PZEV Subaru from any state, its 200 bucks more for OBs and will have to be a special order by the dealer.
    some people have found that the idling on first start is very rough in cold weather. there has been a TSB on this, the engine is designed to run on CA spec fuel, it the fuel in your state is different enough, this idle problem could occur. I have not noticed a problem in IL.
  • pilot1226pilot1226 Member Posts: 166
    Hmm. I'm in NJ which is right next to the PZEV states, I'll have to keep an eye on the fuel and idle this winter.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Member Posts: 72,587
    I know (about the warranty), but we wanted the 5 extra HP and it doesn't hurt that it's more green. :shades:
  • outback08outback08 Member Posts: 9
    I own an '08 O/B LTD W/VDC which is a PZEV vehicle. The only thing you should know is that after the car has been sitting for a while and you start it, it runs rough and loud - sounds kind of crazy for a new car. But, one tap of the gas pedal makes it stop right away and idle quietly. Not crazy about having to do this every morning but I guess it's just part of the routine now. If given the choice, I probably would not opt for the PZEV feature but just about all Outbacks in MA have it.
  • paisanpaisan Member Posts: 21,181
    Yeah tapping the pedal to reduce emissions is tough! :)

  • outback08outback08 Member Posts: 9
    Well, each time I have to tap the gas pedal I think of my first car, '78 Datsun B-210. I had to tap that gas pedal too - to get it going. I guess this is just one more quirky Subie feature.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Member Posts: 72,587
    Our 2009 PZEV Forester doesn't do that. I'll keep an eye out for that just in case.
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