CADILLAC, SATURN DIESEL ENGINES

Diesel engine cars from GM by 2010

Cadillac and Saturn may see the first diesel engines.

14 July, 2007

BY OUR AUTOMOBILE CORRESPONDENT

Come year 2010, and auto behemoth General Motors (GM) is likely to roll out diesel-engine cars under the Cadillac and Saturn brands in the United States.

An auto industry magazine has said that GM would thereby join Daimler, Volkswagen, Japanese major Nissan Motor, and Honda Motor in promising diesel cars compliant with the American Tier 2 bin 5 emissions standards. GM is likely to exhibit its new diesel engine at the Frankfurt auto show, in September 2007, on an e-flex Opel Vectra.

The GM e-flex machine would come with a traditional engine that recharges a battery pack, which provides power for an electric motor. The company is also expected to show case the same variant at the Detroit auto show in January on a Saturn, most likely the Aura sedan. The diesel engine will power the Opel Vectra in Europe in 2008, and the next-generation Aura in the United States if all goes as planned.

With the United States starting to enforce strict regulations for harmful nitrogen oxide and particulate matter emissions by 2008, these companies would begin work on their diesel cars. The nation expects that automakers would use clean diesel engines in passenger cars, sport utility vehicles, and other light-duty trucks. It has been reported that emissions hardware and control systems needed to meet the standards would add another $2,000 to $2,800 to the $1,000-$2,000 premium that already exists for diesels over gasoline-engine cars.

Meanwhile, Toyota Motor seems to have decided not to join the growing list. The reason being cited is that clean diesels would end up being more expensive than gasoline-electric hybrids, a segment the company dominates.

 

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