Print 81 comment(s) - last by freedom4556.. on Aug 27 at 5:30 PM

VW wants more incentives

Volkswagen AG (VW) wants diesel vehicles to get federal and state incentives similar to those for electric vehicles (EVs). Instead, the automaker feels diesels are "penalized." 

“We’re not feeling the love,” said Anna Schneider, vice president for industry and government relations at VW Group of America. “This is one of the greenest choices... It’s time the U.S. government included clean diesel in its ‘all of the above’ strategy’ for greening U.S. roads. Putting these vehicles on the road should be incentivized and not penalized, and that’s our goal.”

Diesels are about 30 percent more fuel efficient than gasoline vehicles, but the problem is that diesels have a higher carbon content than the gasoline-powered cars. For that reason, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) said that diesels only cut carbon emissions by 7 to 20 percent.

Hence, diesels don't get the same treatment as EVs. EVs receive many advantages, such as federal and state tax credits, access to carpool lanes, etc. This is because EVs are seen as key contributors to "greening" the auto industry, and that's especially important right now with the new 54.5 MPG CAFE standards in place for 2017-2025 model years. 

In fact, these new standards don't give diesels additional credits the way it does other vehicles. The EPA said it doesn’t believe diesel vehicles push the commercialization of technologies that will help autos reach zero (or even near-zero) emissions. In addition, the EPA doesn't seem to think that diesels have an issue with "consumer acceptance."

Further hurting the cause of diesels is that 15 U.S. states place additional taxes on diesel, and federal taxes for diesels are 6 cents higher than those of gasoline-powered autos. 

EVs, on the other hand, are eligible for a $7,500 federal tax credit. 

VW is a known promoter of diesel vehicles. For instance, the company confirmed its XL1 hybrid for production earlier this year. The two-seat Volkswagen XL1 has a plug-in diesel hybrid system that allows it to achieve 314 MPG and 31 miles on electric power alone. The CO2 emissions sits at 21 g/km, and it is considered the most aerodynamic car with a Cd figure of 0.189. It's also very light at just 1,752 pounds.

Source: The Detroit News

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Logic driven by profit
By davidm15 on 8/22/2013 12:07:02 PM , Rating: 0
You Americans,

How many more disastrous weather events do you need to wake up and do everything possible to improvement everyone's environment? Corporations running politics for profit will hurt everyone's children.

1/5 reduction in emissions > nothing and consider some VW diesel's will go near 800 miles on 1 tank of fuel. That's less than 4 tanks of fuel to go LA to NY.

RE: Logic driven by profit
By Argon18 on 8/22/2013 12:38:08 PM , Rating: 2
It's true, it's the *combination* of capabilities that makes diesels such a compelling buy:

The 20% reduction in carbon emissions *AND* the much improved fuel economy AND the much better durability/reliability.

RE: Logic driven by profit
By euler007 on 8/22/2013 1:38:50 PM , Rating: 2
Let's not forget the huge torque at low-rpm where most daily drivers operate (as opposed to the 5.5k rpm where the gasoline engines get their peak hp).

RE: Logic driven by profit
By Samus on 8/22/13, Rating: 0
RE: Logic driven by profit
By Motoman on 8/22/2013 3:01:00 PM , Rating: 2
That's not an issue you can broadly throw against all diesels.

My 2003 Dodge 3500 with the Cummins turbo diesel has well over 150,000 miles on it - and there's never been any trouble with it at all. And similar experiences from other people.

I'm not sure that US diesel is any different than European diesel, but I'd be interested to see data on that.

RE: Logic driven by profit
By euler007 on 8/26/2013 10:32:39 AM , Rating: 2
I don't ULSD is everywhere yet, but all it takes is one law and it's done.

RE: Logic driven by profit
By HangFire on 8/26/2013 3:06:02 PM , Rating: 1
Since the passage of ULSD (Ultra low-sulfer diesel fuel) regulations, the quality of US Diesel has been superb. The problems with Ford F250 diesels is that they are designed and made by Ford. Cummins diesels in same-size trucks have no such problem. Volkswagon diesels are superb. Ford is well known for blaming others for their quality problems; F150 spark plugs, 2012 Focus transmissions, etc.

Of course any underground fuel storage can be subject to water infiltration; including gasoline. That is a known issue and nothing to do with the quality of the fuel itself.

RE: Logic driven by profit
By superstition on 8/26/2013 5:31:13 PM , Rating: 2
Since the passage of ULSD (Ultra low-sulfer diesel fuel) regulations, the quality of US Diesel has been superb.


While the quality, in terms of sulfur content, dramatically improved, the lubricity and cetane are subpar.

The EMA (Engine Manufacturers' Association), of which VW and Bosch are a part, came out with a white paper in 2005 arguing that the lubricity of US diesel is inadequate and will lead to premature wear (longevity problems) for fuel pumps. The same thing has been reiterated by the EMA since then. It's interesting how so many car buffs know nothing about this.

In addition to poor lubricity, the cetane standard (40 minimum) isn't as good as what's available in much of Europe.

RE: Logic driven by profit
By Solandri on 8/22/2013 4:36:21 PM , Rating: 3
Let's not forget the huge torque at low-rpm where most daily drivers operate (as opposed to the 5.5k rpm where the gasoline engines get their peak hp).

That's actually a disadvantage of diesels in cars.

To move a sedan at highway speeds only requires 20-25 hp. With a gasoline engine, you can generate that at low RPMs, but still have 200+ hp accessible at 5k RPM. i.e. The car normally operates at about 10%-15% its peak potential hp.

With a diesel, either you put in a small diesel engine so it can operate efficiently at low RPM but lacks hp at high RPM for highway passing. Or you put in a big diesel engine so it has the power for highway passing, but that lowers efficiency most of the time when it only needs to generate 20-25 hp.

That's why diesels are predominantly found in trucks - there's less of a difference between average and max power expectation on trucks. Having gobs of hp on tap for highway passing isn't a priority for trucks, so they go with the "small diesel" option. Their engines are designed to operate continuously higher up in the diesel engine's power band. That gives them efficiency, but costs them passing and acceleration power.

On diesel cars, they have to play tricks like turbocharging or supercharging to spread out the power band and make it more like a gasoline engine's power band.

RE: Logic driven by profit
By Monkey's Uncle on 8/22/2013 7:08:10 PM , Rating: 2
Don't forget in this age of CVTs and 6-8 speed automatic transmissions, the low-biased diesel torque curve becomes less of an issue. Remember that passing in a diesel does not automatically mean you need to kick down a gear to get your torque peak. You are already there! Add in the turbocharger and you can seriously feel that torque in the seat of your pants. Diesels really don't need to rev at 5k+ to produce power.

And if you think the turbo diesel would have a hard time passing, I will leave you with this u-tube:


RE: Logic driven by profit
By Monkey's Uncle on 8/22/2013 7:15:32 PM , Rating: 2
Here's another for giggles :D

RE: Logic driven by profit
By JediJeb on 8/22/2013 8:14:35 PM , Rating: 2
I don't believe I have taken an engine over 3k rpm except maybe five times in my life, even when I owned a 99 Trans Am. Heck the Trans Am would make 70mph at maybe 1800rpm, even when passing it would never need to go above 3K rpm.

A guy I work with though has a Focus and I think he hits 5k rpm just leaving the parking lot. It sounds so stupid revving it up so high to only have to let off once he hits the speed limit of 25mph on the road in front of work.

RE: Logic driven by profit
By Reclaimer77 on 8/22/2013 8:39:06 PM , Rating: 2
I don't believe I have taken an engine over 3k rpm except maybe five times in my life

No offense but that is extremely difficult to believe.

RE: Logic driven by profit
By aliasfox on 8/23/2013 10:44:30 AM , Rating: 2
Why? For someone who never street races, it's perfectly believable. My parents never seem to exceed 3.5k RPM, even when passing on the highway. In most cars, you can accelerate from a dead stop to highway speeds and barely go above 2k RPM, in fact.

If you run an engine with decent torque on the bottom end, have a transmission that shifts early for fuel economy, and (importantly) you don't care about looking/sounding/feeling fast, staying below 3k is pretty easy. Even 2k is possible (I did it in my GTI a few times just for giggles).

RE: Logic driven by profit
By JediJeb on 8/23/2013 4:15:35 PM , Rating: 2
The little 4 cylinder Mustang I had in high school would to 70 if you wound it up near 3K, but back then the speed limit was 55, so rarely got anywhere near it.

The truck I drive now screams and sounds like it is flying apart over 2500 rpms(4.9l I6) and I usually shift it in a 1,3,5 pattern, hitting 5th gear by the time I am doing 30mph so never wind it up either. When you have the torque, why do you need to use the low gears much anyhow?

RE: Logic driven by profit
By Monkey's Uncle on 8/23/2013 4:22:25 PM , Rating: 2
Have to ask...

Why would you buy a 1999 Trans Am if you are never stepping on it. You would have saved yourself a big wad of gas money with a 1999 Hyundai Pony instead.

(At I had a 2005 Trans Am, and yes, I put my foot into it on occasion -- and not street racing either. Just kicking it down into passing gear getting on a freeway will hike it up to 4000).

RE: Logic driven by profit
By freedom4556 on 8/27/2013 5:30:51 PM , Rating: 2
...I had a 2005 Trans Am...
You're either a liar or a bad typist. You know how I know? The T/A went out of production for forever in 2002. RIP Pontiac

-2000 Firebird owner

RE: Logic driven by profit
By Reclaimer77 on 8/23/2013 5:23:09 PM , Rating: 2
Street races? We're talking 3,000 RPM. Not 6 or 7. 3K is extremely low. I didn't say it wasn't "possible" to not go above it. But I think most everyone does. Routinely. To claim otherwise is just silly.

RE: Logic driven by profit
By jmarchel on 8/23/2013 10:50:42 PM , Rating: 2
You are wrong about fuel economy. Diesel burns less gallons of diesel fuel but you need more barrels of oil to make it. From barrel of oil you can get 18 gallons of gasoline but only 9 gallons of heating oil and diesel fuel combined.

RE: Logic driven by profit
By euler007 on 8/26/2013 10:51:40 AM , Rating: 2
I don't think you understand the refining process at all. Yes from a barrel of crude you will get a fixed amount of diesel and of gasoline (and other heavier and light products).

The american refineries use cracking technologies (usually FCC) to increase the gasoline output of the barrel.

It's not like they throw away the gasoline. This article is just about getting a fair taxation structure for Diesel versus Gasoline and Hybrids.

The gasoline will be used. If your daily drive is getting up in a cold climate and driving 4 miles, gasoline is the way to go. If you get up and drive 400 miles on the highway regularly, diesel is the way to go.

RE: Logic driven by profit
By Monkey's Uncle on 8/22/2013 12:51:10 PM , Rating: 2
Not sure what's got your ears in a knot, but there are a couple of things to consider:

1. Electric cars are very new. They also need a lot of maturing to get their range up to anything near a fossil fuel car. The only electrci that even comes close is the Tesla s.

2. Hybrids are a half-assed solution. Sure you get a little better mileage but at the cost of doubling the complexity and adding a huge amount of weight. Not very efficient! As well their ballyhooed efficiency is just not there when you use them on highways at highway speeds. Not very useful for commuters.

3. Clean diesels have only within the last year or so started coming out in North America for anything except Vee-Dubs. Previous diesels polluted the air like pigs, rattled like a can of marbles when they ran and left a bad taste in early adopter's mouths. We in North America are very pollution conscious and tend to not buy 'dirty' cars. We also like our cars to NOT sound like they are falling off their wheels. Let more quiet, clean diesel options appear in automaker dealers and we will buy them like mad. Until then it appears to be a europe-only market.

4. Realize that we also prize reliability and VW has not shown a very track record in regards to reliability. That said there are still an awful lot of VW & Audi TDIs sold in the U.S. I might even hazard to guesstimate that VW sells more Jetta TDIs in N.A. than anywhere else in the world.

So before you start whining about "You Americans....", perhaps you really should look at what is really happening in the world.

RE: Logic driven by profit
By Peter-B on 8/22/2013 4:34:17 PM , Rating: 2
We in North America are very pollution conscious and tend to not buy 'dirty' cars.

That's hilarious! You like to drive 3+ litre vehicles even just to go grocery shopping! In Europe 1.4-1.6 litre diesel and gasoline engines are very popular, Ford even released 1.0 120 hp gasoline supermini. Would you drive a car like that in North America? They are cleaner than anything non-EV you have (39 urban / 56 highway US-MPG).

RE: Logic driven by profit
By Monkey's Uncle on 8/22/2013 6:17:56 PM , Rating: 2
There is a reason for that.

In North America, gasoline is about half the price that it goes for in other continents -- except maybe in the Middle east where full size SUV's are really popular.

Realize also that roads in the older parts of many European cities are narrower than the average road in North America. Larger cars simply don't fit on them.

You are pointing at 1.4-1.6 liter cars in Europe. What kind of engines do you think are going into very popular cars like the Chevy Cruze? (hint: It's not a 3.0 liter V6). For the Ford Fusion, you can't even get one with a V6. The Hyundai Veloster and Elantra have retty small engines as well.

My Focus is 2.0 liters - and if it came in Diesel, I would have bought that.

I have already said this too: It was not until the last couple of years that automakers that sell cars in North America have even considered diesel. That is because there were no diesels out there that met our emission standards. In short they ran dirty. Now that diesels have been designed that can meet our emission standards, perhaps we will see more of them.

And yes a 1.0 liter car is not out of the question here. There are plenty of the following cars sold in North America:

You are making an assumption that North Americans would not be caught dead driving something that is cheap to run. Sadly car makers are looking at the North American market pretty much the same way you are. They are just recently getting the message that we like being able to drive 800+ miles on a tank of gas and not having to spend $80US to fill it.

RE: Logic driven by profit
By Reclaimer77 on 8/22/2013 6:48:58 PM , Rating: 2
Hey asshole, America has the tightest emissions standards in the WORLD! Which is why we can't even BUY your shitty diesel vehicles here, they're too dirty!!

I'm so tired of you prick European elitists pissing on everything about us without knowing shit.

RE: Logic driven by profit
By erple2 on 8/25/2013 10:39:13 AM , Rating: 2
To be fair, mention a diesel to the average American, and they will tell you about the HORRIBLE attempt at one that GM made in the early 80s. It has taken VW a long time to try and erase that stain. I don't count Mercedes in that as they're not everyman type cars - they've had a loyal following for a long while.

When I asked VW about why it was so hard to get more diesel VW's here, the response was that CA would only allow a certain number sold in that state. I live on the east coast, the tresponse was a shrug.

The modern diesel engine is far more civilized than what people remember GM vomited out even 30 years ago. Diesels in Trucks have enjoyed a different renaissance here.

RE: Logic driven by profit
By HangFire on 8/26/2013 3:09:45 PM , Rating: 2
The reason there are not a lot of diesels sold to consumers in the US is very simple- since the introduction of ULSD, diesel usually costs more than premium fuel. That removes most or all incentive to "save money" by buying a diesel vehicle.

RE: Logic driven by profit
By middlehead on 8/22/2013 12:56:23 PM , Rating: 2
I'd love to drive a clean diesel, but I can't. I can't justify buying a vehicle I can only drive half the year. It gets too cold in the winter for a diesel daily driver.

RE: Logic driven by profit
By mellomonk on 8/22/2013 5:31:27 PM , Rating: 2
Again another misnomer from the diesels of yesteryear. Newer designs are nowhere near as problematic on those cold mornings Modern common rail diesels operate at tremendous pressures at the rail/injector. This pressure heats the fuel and all is well. They start in a few seconds and are only marginally noisier then and equivalent gas engine until they heat up. CR diesels are used in cars in many parts of the cold world, Russia, Sweden, ect.

RE: Logic driven by profit
By Reclaimer77 on 8/22/13, Rating: -1
RE: Logic driven by profit
By marvdmartian on 8/26/2013 8:15:51 AM , Rating: 2
Yes, I'm sure it's due solely to the gas hog vehicles Americans drive, and nothing to do with the crap that 2nd world countries, like China and India, pump into the atmosphere from their factories.

How callous of us, to be that way!! [/sarcasm]

Maybe the reason that VW diesels don't sell that well, is because they're not nearly as dependable a vehicle as people want to invest their money in? I've heard, over and over, in person and on forums, that dependability is hurting VW more than anything else.

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