American consumers continue to display confidence in diesel technology as a choice for powering their new cars, SUVs, trucks and vans, according to new research and analysis from the Diesel Technology Forum.
According to analysis by the Diesel Technology Forum looking at 2017 U.S. vehicles in operation data (Class 1-3) provided by IHS Markit, diesel continues to hold 3 percent of the American automotive marketplace, with nearly 8 million diesel-powered cars, SUVs, trucks and vans operating on U.S. roads in 2017.
Texas continues to be No. 1 in the nation in total number of registered diesel vehicles, ahead of California, Michigan, Florida and Washington. Meanwhile, Wyoming, Montana, Idaho, North Dakota and Alaska maintain the highest percentages of diesel vehicles. To see where your state ranks go to: http://dieselforum.org/in-your-state.
“The new generation of diesel technology feels right at home in show rooms alongside advanced gasoline, battery-electric and plug-in hybrid vehicles,” said Allen Schaeffer, executive director of the Forum. “We know it’s not a one-fuel-fits-all world, and for consumers, diesel is a proven performer that delivers real benefits: high fuel efficiency, great driving range and no sacrifices in vehicle size, fueling access, utility or towing capabilities, or performance. With the capability to use advanced renewable low-carbon biodiesel fuels, consumers can choose to do even more for the environment.
“This generation of diesel vehicles is among the most scrutinized, tested and most improved in the world. Looking forward, we expect diesel registrations to rise, especially in SUVs, trucks and vans, in part due to full-year availability of the newest models. With the 2018 and 2019 model years, manufacturers are adding more than 10 new diesel models to the U.S. market, across the most popular vehicle segments.
“The greatest signals of continued growth? New diesel options in full-size pickup trucks, among the most popular selling class of vehicle in America: the GMC Silverado 1500, the Ford F-150 pickup and Ram 1500 pickup,” said Schaeffer. “In the lineup of available alternative fuel vehicles, diesel remains the only one with choices in all vehicle segments – sedans, light trucks, SUVs, vans and luxury performance.
“Coupled with choices like the Chevy Cruze Diesel sedan and hatchback, the new Jeep Wrangler Diesel, Chevy’s Diesel Equinox crossover and Ford’s Diesel Transit Connect Wagon, these announcements demonstrate the continued significance of the diesel powertrain for consumers and auto manufacturers. It reinforces a strong commitment to diesel technology as a fuel-efficient choice that continues to meet the world’s most stringent clean air and fuel economy targets,” he added.
Pickup trucks remain the most popular type of diesel vehicle, according to the Forum, with more than 6.6 million on U.S. roads in 2017. Diesel continues to hold more than 13 percent of this vehicle segment, despite registrations having fallen by 100,000 units between 2016 and 2017. Diesel vans are gaining in popularity, with more than 120,000 added to the roads in 2017 – an increase of more than 44 percent nationwide, claiming 5 percent of the total van segment.
“Hands down, diesel pickups offer some of the best value for consumers,” said Schaeffer. “On top of gaining 20 percent to 35 percent more torque and towing power, Diesel pickups can go an extra 150 miles per tank of fuel, and can save owners an average of 200 gallons of fuel per year. We calculated these benefits out across the full pickup truck segment, and if every full-size pickup truck in America used diesel fuel, we’d save more than 500 million gallons of fuel each year – the same as if 15 percent of all cars in the U.S. switched entirely to electric power.”