Posted By RichC on May 30, 2006
Although we have been hearing about it for sometime, I’ve still been hoping that the news of Volkswagen not having US diesel in 2007 was not true. Unfortunately I’m not able to bury my head in the sand any longer after reading Mark Phelan’s Detroit Freepress article. I kept thinking that the “German engineering” (see ads) ‘gears would have something up their sleeves to meet the US new diesel emission standards. Unfortunately it doesn’t look as if there is much hope.
According to the article, “VW will drop the diesel version of the Jetta, Golf and Beetle models for the 2007 model year, which begin this fall. The new U.S. limits for nitrogen oxide emissions are among the most stringent in the world.” Far be it from me to question the logic of the EPA that permits pickups and SUVs but restricts fuel sipping TDIs? I guess 45mpgs running Ultra Low Sulfur Diesel (ULSD) being introduced in 2006 isn’t good enough? You would think that keeping fuel efficient cars rolling along while we sweat over imported oil and reduce the existing sulfur from 500 ppm to 15 ppm would be a logical choice. Our government is brilliant! [/sarcasm]
On a positive note, Volkswagen’s diesel sales have risen to over twenty percent of their new car sales in recent months. The price of fuel has convinced many America’s to test drive a TDI and buy the frugal but comfortable cars. The good news is that VW will offer the diesel Touareg SUV in 2007, and is cranking up production of the 2006 Jetta TDIs in hopes to stretch into the next model year. (Touareg diesel … tell me more!) Also, a new diesel Jetta that meets emissions standards in all 50 states is being planned for 2008.
6/1/2006 EDIT: Jeep to Offer First Full-Size Diesel SUV
So you can’t get a fuel sipping VW TDI Beetle, Golf, Jetta or Passat in 2007 because they aren’t emissions ready … don’t worry buy a diesel Jeep. “The diesel-powered Grand Cherokee will get an estimated 19 miles per gallon in the city and 23 miles per gallon on the highway.” Not that I’m against having a few more diesel powered vehicles, but the car, suv, truck emission playbook bothers me. I can’t go out and purchase an economical and cleaner (ULSD) TDI in 2007, but I can buy less economical diesels that are bound to spew more pollutants than 45mpg TDIs? What am I’m missing here???