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Fuel Efficiency

More Miles To The Gallon

Diesel is the world’s most efficient internal combustion engine – returning 20% to 40% more miles per gallon than comparable gasoline engines.  Because of this inherent efficiency, diesel is the predominant power source for many important sectors of the U.S. economy – including freight transport, public transportation, and off-road vehicles used in construction, agriculture and mining.

Diesel is also poised to help improve the fuel economy of American cars, pickups and SUVs, without requiring sacrifices in power and performance like some other fuel-sipping alternatives.  For example, the U.S. Department of Energy reports that if diesel vehicles reached a 30 percent market share by 2020, it would reduce U.S. oil consumption by 350,000 barrels a day. 

New Tax Credits

The federal government has acknowledged that both clean diesels and hybrids will help boost U.S. fuel efficiency by making the two technologies eligible for the same advanced-vehicle consumer tax credits.  Beginning January 1, 2006, consumers who purchase new diesel-powered cars, light trucks and SUVs may be eligible for up to $3,400 in tax credits based on the weight, fuel efficiency rating and emissions level of the vehicle, as determined the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. The credit is available through December 31, 2010.  Read about the clean diesel tax credits.

Watch President Bush’s recent remarks on the conservation and energy benefits of clean diesel technology. 

Next Generation Efficiency

Engineers are pushing the envelope to improve diesel’s efficiency even further.  One example is the diesel hybrid electric bus. In head-to-head comparisons under laboratory conditions, diesel hybrid buses have demonstrated fuel economy improvements up to 60% better than conventional diesel or CNG.  Most transit operators report real-world fuel economy improvements that range from 20% to 55%. 

For a typical urban transit bus that travels 40,000 miles per year, diesel hybrid technology will save approximately 1,500 gallons of fuel per year.  A fleet of 1,000 city transit buses operating on diesel hybrid propulsion could save 1.5 million gallons of fuel per year.

See a list of diesel cars, pickups and SUVs available in the U.S.  

Learn more about diesel hybrid power

Interested in alternative fuels? Visit discoveralternatives.org.

Recent News

Diesel To Triple Share Of US Auto Market, Bosch

September 1, 2006

FRANKFURT - Bosch [ROBG.UL], the world's biggest automotive industry supplier, expects diesel-powered engines to triple their share of the U.S. light vehicle market within a decade thanks to their better fuel efficiency, it...

Indiana-Based Diesel Makers Look To Produce High-Mileage Engines For Smaller Vehicles

August 28, 2006
Indianapolis Star

Hunt the car lots for top fuel economy and the popular choices usually are a hybrid-electric or subcompact car.In a few years, though, you might find a third option -- a 45-mile-per-gallon midsize sedan or a 30-mpg sport-utility...

Perspective: Diesel Is No Longer A Dirty Word

August 28, 2006
CNet News | News.com

By Brian CooleyYou know the list: Ethanol, electric, biodiesel, compressed natural gas, hydrogen, hydrogen fuel cell and hybrid. They are the Seven Horsemen of the Automotive Apocalypse, nee The End of Cheap Oil--the harbingers...

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