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by Tim Beissmann

Opel has announced the details of a new diesel engine that is set to become the brand’s first low-emission Euro 6-compliant powerplant.

The all-new 1.6-litre four-cylinder turbocharged diesel engine will replace the existing 1.7-litre unit and lower-powered versions of the 2.0-litre diesel in the European manufacturer’s line-up.

Opel says the engine will be available in a variety of power outputs across several car lines, likely to include the Astra, Insignia and Mokka, among others. Opel Australia is yet to confirm which models it will offer with the new engine or when it will become available in our market.

Featuring an aluminium block and closed-loop combustion control, the 1.6 CDTI Ecotec powerplant was designed to achieve low fuel consumption, high power and torque density, and class-leading attenuation of NVH (noise, vibration, harshness).

The engine will initially be produced with outputs of 101kW and 320Nm, with fuel consumption down by as much as 10 per cent compared with similarly powerful 2.0-litre diesels.

The existing 121kW/350Nm 2.0-litre diesel in the Opel Astra consumes 4.7 litres per 100km on the combined cycle when teamed with a manual transmission. A 10 per cent reduction would see that figure fall to 4.2L/100km.

Opel management board deputy chairman Dr Thomas Sedran said the introduction of the 1.6-litre diesel engine family was another important step in the brand’s renewal strategy.

“Our new 1.6-litre diesel will set benchmarks for refinement, performance and environmental compatibility,” Sedran said.

“By the end of this year we will have launched three all-new generations of [petrol] and diesel engines as part of our rollout of 23 new models and 13 new powertrains by 2016.”

The new engine was developed in-house by a team of General Motors engineers in Turin, Russelsheim and the US, and will be produced from the second quarter of this year alongside the new 1.6-litre petrol engine in Szentgotthard, Hungary.