There’s a buzz about new cleaner diesel luxury cars soon entering the market that’s excited alternative and green technology enthusiasts. GM is currently plugging the new 2013 Cadillac ATS clean diesel sedan in direct response toand the . Aside from these big ticket vehicles, many green LOHAS consumers have hoped for years that more diesel cars could be shipped from Europe into the US market, but there are a few factors keeping diesel fuels for personal transportation from being a readily available choice in America.
First of all, the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has stricter Nitric Oxide requirements than in Europe (NOx is the key smog pollution producer). Expensive green technology and the jobs to complement such manufacturing do exist, which make possible the opulent diesels on the road here today that can afford such manufacturing costs. But this is limited in numbers at best, and US fans of bio-diesel who would gladly fix their autos to permit this alternative fuel remain stranded.
Indeed, the lower cost for diesel is slowly attracting more attention like it did back in the mid-1970s when gasoline prices were spiking and consumers waited in long lines at gas stations to fill up. Since this was short lived and diesels aren’t popular overall in the US, most automobile manufacturers have for years left consumers here in a suspended state of status quo, but that’s beginning to change, albeit at a snail’s pace, considering rigorous and health-mandated US emission standards.
Among automakers with diesel models for sale in the US, Audi has the A3 TDI and Q7 TDI, BMW has its 3-Series and X5 xDrive35d, Chevrolet/GMC offers GM’s family Duramax 6.6L V8 turbodiesel in several full-size trucks and vans, Dodge’s Ram Pickup 2500/3500 has a 6.7L Cummins turbo diesel engine, and Ford’s Superduty F250/350/450 Pickup line are the short list of diesel choices currently in America.
The only option for US consumers who prefer smaller, more affordable vehicles is to look for used diesel cars somewhere on sale, or visit a Volkswagen showroom. With six different diesel models to choose from, Volkswagen is seriously committed to the US market in a way most car makers aren’t. Their Jetta TDI (Turbocharged Direct Injection) starts at $22,995 with the Golf TDI at $23,225 delivering 30/42 MPG. The Beetle TDI is set to appear this spring, with a new design considered handsome as in “more masculine” with an estimated MSRP of about $23,000.
When it comes to alternative fuel choices today, most other car companies selling in the US are focused on hybrids and electric cars, however it’s entirely another story in Europe. A long list of diesel model manufacturers that includes Honda, Hyundai, Infiniti, Jaguar/Land Rover, Jeep, Mazda, Nissan, Porsche, Saab, Smart, Subaru, Toyota/Lexus and Volvo are selling their products in Europe with great success although not with the same environmental criteria as demanded here at home.
The US Coalition for Advanced Diesel Cars is an industry group representing various carmakers, parts companies and fuel providers working toward increased US government incentives for American consumers. The ability to choose is at the heart of green technology and our alternative fueled future and this organization has much to do to get the word out. If green, clean diesel technology can be made more affordable for manufacturers and consumers, the whole earth would benefit.
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