Tuesday, March 24, 2009

More Diesels!!!

Back in 2006, Audi began running ads in the US touting its success racing the diesel-powered R10 TDI Le Mans car, with wins at both Sebring and Le Mans. I thought for sure that Audi was priming the pump to bring diesels to the US, but the brand's product pipeline, empty of US oil-burner entries, left me mystified. 

Three years later, the four rings still do not adorn a US diesel entry, though that will be changing this year, with TDI versions of the A4 and Q7. Unfortunately, Audi has not continued its pump priming in the US, having been relatively silent about its diesel racing engines for quite a while. 

The fact is, diesels have a lot of potential for being marketed as sporty choices, less for their top speed than their prodigious reserves of torque. It appears that Audi's parent company may be about to take the lead in this regard. Autoblog has heard rumblings of a diesel equivalent to the GTI, called the GTD

This would be seriously exciting, and hopefully high-profile enough to kick off the diesel passenger car market in the US. Think about a car with all the agility, and most of the quickness of a GTI, but with 40 mpg. If I had an actual commute, and didn't love AWD, this might be my next car. 

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