Motor vehicle fuels in Mexico are distributed exclusively by the national oil company Petróleos Mexicanos (PEMEX). Regulation NOM-086-SEMARNAT-SENER-SCFI-2005 defines two grades of diesel fuel:

  • Automotive diesel (PEMEX) for use in on-road vehicles, and
  • Marine and agricultural diesel.

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The low sulfur automotive diesel grade (first introduced as Diesel Sin) replaced the earlier standard diesel of 5000 ppm (0.5%) sulfur.

The regulation sets automotive diesel fuel sulfur levels at 500 ppm with a scheduled reduction to 15 ppm. The following is the phase-in schedule for ultra-low sulfur (15 ppm) on-road diesel:

  • February 2007—Northern frontier region that borders the USA,
  • February 2009—Metropolitan regions of Guadalajara, Monterrey and the Valle de México,
  • September 2009—Nationwide.

Diesel fuel for marine and agricultural applications is colored and has an upper sulfur limit of 5000 ppm.