cmattson

Diesel commuter cars

11 posts in this topic

Okay, we all know that deal with soot, emissions, etc. and that GM's european diesel's can't just be shipped & installed in their US models. That being said, I can't help but be intrigued that GM couldn't get something ready for a US model.

With that thought in mind, I went exploring @ the Great Britain Vauxhall showroom. I was looking at the Astra (about the equivalient in size to our Cobalt). One of the engines is the 1.3lcdti. It's output is 88hp &147ft-lbs -- which would make it a comfortable & capable commuter engine.

It's efficiency is measured at 45.6 & 70.6 (kilometers per litre). As you can see by the mileage conversion, that equates to a whopping 109mpg and 168mpg -- which cannot possibly be right. Anybody want to take a stab at what I'm missing here?

Mileage calculator:
http://www.eltcalendar.com/stuff/mileage.php

Here's the metrics on the Astra (click on technical data):
http://vauxhall.co.uk/showroom/configure/i...&newSearch=true Edited by cmattson
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'Car' magazine lists the Astra 1.3cdi at 58 MPG.... (in their comprehensive new car listing at the back of the magazine). I'm not sure if those are US gallons, though, or Imperial gallons. Odd that it would be in Km/Litre on the website.. I'd expect that in Continental Europe for an Opel but in not the UK (they use miles)... Edited by moltar
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I converted the 70.6 km/l to mpg myself and got 167.7 mpg, something is wrong. The usual metric efficiency measure is l/100km. 70.6 km/l = roughly 1.5 l/100km. This is quite impossible, since the Smart ForTwo gets 3.9 l/100km (lower numbers = lower consumption)
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European MPG figures are even more optimistic than US EPA figures. A Prius gets 65.7 MPG combined according to the Toyota UK site. Compare that to the 60/51 MPG we get over here.

Diesels don't make sense in the US. Unlike Europe, we don't have CO2 taxes, displacement taxes, or cheap diesel fuel (relative to petrol). (Diesel tax breaks are ending in Europe, by the way, because diesels emit more localized pollutants.) In Los Angeles, 87 unleaded costs as little as $2.75/gallon, while the cheapest diesel is $3.11/gallon.

Here's an example: A 2005 Passat TDI costs $215 more than its 1.8T equivalent. It gets 31 combined MPG (vs. 25 combined MPG for the 1.8T). Over the course of 12,000 miles, you'll save $117 in fuel costs, but that's still $98 short of the MSRP premium. Keep in mind diesels are rarer (therefore fewer incentives/discounts), significantly slower, less refined, and pollute more, too.
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Diesel commuter cars, will be awsome in backed up rush hour traffic Diesel commuter cars, will be awsome when our cities are chock full of them stinking up the place. I love diesels but realize whats wrong with them. Ever sat next to one at a redlight, its like "cripes would you shut that off already !" rattle stink tap tap tap rattle stink tap tap tap. Maybe with this hybred tecnology where they shut off while sitting but then theres a cold start diesel problem, its a nightmare. We had a VW back in early 90's was great, cheap, had to flog the heck out of it to get up hills, was annoying at redlights, not to bad starting in winter. Limited places to fuel up. We were pleased to be able to afford a Buick and move up in luxury, size, comfort and fresh air silence Our government rather than fixing up a desert rat hole could be getting mass transit in place in our country.
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That's 45.6 mpg (imperial), not km/l. The Astra 1.3 CDTi gets 6.2 L/100 km city, 4.0 hwy and 4.8 combined. Although not the same as the EPA test, that's 37.9, 58.8 and 49 mpg (US). A 1.6 Easytronic gets 36.2 mpg combined, the 1.4 37.3 mpg, the 1.7 CDTi 46.1 mpg, the 1.9 CDTi 40.6 mpg.
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Diesels are good, but not good enough, we need cleaner air than we have, not less.. we are killing ourselves. If we don't start with alternatives , by the time china starts buying cars in bigger numbers we'll all die with lung cancer
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I was in Brazil recently and they have a lot of diesel vehicles there. You can barely breathe at a cross walk in many areas of Sao Paulo. They are paying $R2.36 a litre - which is more than triple what Americans pay. Unless diesels improve a lot more, I am dead set against them.
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I was in Brazil recently and they have a lot of diesel vehicles there. You can barely breathe at a cross walk in many areas of Sao Paulo.  They are paying $R2.36 a litre - which is more than triple what Americans pay.
  Unless diesels improve a lot more, I am dead set against them.

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Almost all would have been old rotary-pump injection diesels. Automakers are only now (2005) switching to cleaner, more efficient common-rail engines, and only in a few pickups and SUVs - the updated Ranger, S10 and Blazer. Beside pickups, trucks and vans, there are almost no diesels currently being sold in Brazil. Diesel models are more common in Argentina, where GM offers both the Meriva and Astra with older European diesel engines, in addition to the S10 and Blazer.
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