This study investigated the effect of combustion chamber geometry and initial mixture distribution on combustion process in a direct-injection diesel engine by means of experiment and CFD calculation. The high squish combustion chamber with squish lip could produce simultaneous reduction of NOx and particulate emissions with retarded injection timing in the real engine experiment. According to the CFD computation, the high squish combustion chamber with central pip is effective to continue combustion under the squish lip until the end of combustion and the combustion region forms rich and high turbulence atmosphere, which reduces NOx emissions. This chamber can also reduce initial burning because combustion continues under the squish lip. The CFD computation is also carried out in order to investigate the effect of initial mixture distribution on combustion process. The results suggest that mixture distribution affects the history of heat release rate. When fuel is distributed in the bottom or wide region in the combustion chamber, burned gas tends to spread to the cavity center and initial heat release rate becomes high. On the contrary, the high squish combustion chamber with central pip produces lower initial heat release rate because combustion with local rich condition continues long under the squish lip. Diffusion burning is promoted by high swirl motion in this chamber with keeping lower initial heat release rate.