Car companies are preparing to release a few diesel cars, as they are a bit more fuel efficient. The lone American car company to bring a diesel car for the masses is GM with the Cruze Diesel, the price and estimated mileage of which was announced during the car’s auto show debut.
Cruze Diesel mileage, price announced
Unless one wants to drop a ton of money for a diesel BMW or Mercedes, the only close-to-affordable diesel is a Volkswagen, the most popular being the Jetta TDI. It comes dearer than a base Jetta, starting at $23,055, compared to the base model’s $16,720, before destination fee. Granted, it’s a more upscale trim, having the SE with Convenience trim level but close to $2,800 tacked on for the diesel engine, according to Volkswagen.
Still, under $24,000 isn’t terribly expensive and it gets 42 miles per gallon, though diesels are capable of far more with careful driving. Hence why it’s the most popular diesel.
However, General Motors is out to kick VW in the tailpipe with the 2014 Chevrolet Cruze Diesel. According to AutoBlog, the price and estimated mileage, $25,695, were both announced at the recent Chicago Auto Show.
Does get good mileage
The Cruze Diesel is slated to get an estimated 42 miles per gallon from a 2.0-liter four-cylinder turbo clean diesel, good for a respectable 148 horsepower and 258 pounds-feet of torque. Peak power comes at 2,000 RPM. The trunk is partially taken up by the 17-liter diesel emissions cleaner tank, which has to get refilled with urea every 10,000 miles. The urea breaks down chemical components in diesel exhaust, making them cleaner.
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That makes it more powerful than the 1.4-liter turbo gasoline version of the Cruze by 10 ponies and the same gas mileage as the Cruze Eco, which according to AutoGuide, made up for 15 percent of Cruze sales last year. However, it comes in the 2LT premium trim, replete with leather seats, touchscreen display and available goodies like a back-up camera and so forth. The car also gets an aerodynamic body kit, to boost mileage.
The only transmission is a six-speed automatic though it is bespoke, solely for use with that engine. A Jetta can be had with a five-speed manual or dual-clutch semi-auto. It can also run on biodiesel blends up to B20, an 80-20 blend of regular and biodiesel, whereas the Jetta can only handle up to B5.
Goal is to attract old converts not new ones
General Motors has said the idea behind the Cruze Diesel, which will be called the Cruze 2.0 TD when it hits dealerships around the middle of this year, isn’t so much to attract new customers to diesels but rather to convince current diesel owners to switch to a Chevrolet. In other words, people used to their Jettas and Passats TDI now have an alternative which isn’t a BMW or a Mercedes, meaning they won’t have to get as much in, say SunTrust auto loans to get one.
The big question remains of who is going to try to convince more people to go diesel. The Mazda6 diesel is forthcoming, but the price hasn’t been announced yet and it’s likely to be around the same as a Jetta TDI.