• Mar 23rd 2006 at 8:00AM
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Since its introduction in early 2005 the Jeep Liberty CRD diesel has sold almost 10,000 units, an accomplishment over which DaimlerChrysler was recently beaming during a press conference with a group of Ohio soybean growers and the state’s governor, Bob Taft.
We reported last summer that the Liberty CRD got off to a strong start selling 3,000 units by the end of May. It appears that rate was maintained throughout the year and that Liberty CRDs are not sitting on dealer lots for very long.

It’s becoming more and more clear that if any company can reverse the negative image with which diesels have been branded in the U.S. it will be DaimlerChrysler. Credit must be given to Volkswagen for sticking with the powerplant through thick and thin, but Dieter Zetsche's impassioned introduction of the company’s new 50-state approved 3.2L BLUETEC diesel V6 at the Detroit Auto Show convinced us this is one company that’s not betting the farm on hybrids.

[Source: Chrysler Group]

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 8 Years Ago
      Some funny info here:

      1)ULSD in the US is not near the quality of Euro fuel. Cetane ratings of 50-52 in Euro Fuel makes it much better than lackluster 45-46 Cetane ratings in the US.

      2)Real World MPG for the Jeep Liberty CRD are at least as good or better than the EPA estimates. 20+ city is easy in stop and go traffic, 27+ hwy is easy at 65mpg =/- 5.

      3)The cost of the diesel options really only adds $800 to the cost of a Jeep Liberty. The extra options of Fog Lights, Auto Tranny, Upgraded Wheels and Selec-Trac are why the overall cost is a bit higher.

      4)Since the Jeep Liberty CRD gets an average of 30-40% better MPG, the cost difference in fuel vs diesel is still in favor of diesel which is usually no higher than 15% more costly.

      5)Get tired of hearing about "Plastics" being used in cars...they all do to save costs and weight.

      6) As for DC being in bed with Arab Oil and knocking Hybrids...DC has recently built a Diesel/Elec Hybrid that outperforms any Gas/Elec Hybrid. some just have a thing against Diesels based on the early 1980's and can't get past it.

      7) An "EonoBox" is not a great choice for many people...big family, towing, hauling, road conditions. Diesels give the benefits of Torque and MPG is a bigger package that is more utilitarian for some people.

      8)Longevity in a diesel has proven to be longer under similiar circumstances. They are built with heavier components to handle the extra compression ratios, torque characteristics, heavy duty uses, ect. To ignore the positives of Diesel Fueled Vehicles is just plain dumb. Different methods for different applications should be the "rule of thumb".

      Basically, you must remain opened minded and realize different "strokes" for different folks. In Iceland they have all almost gone to Hydrogen Fuels and stopped importing any fuels except Diesel for ships. For the next 5-7 years, things are going to change drastically in the auto/truck market...new combinations of engines, fuels, ect. The problem is you can only buy what is available now for current uses and deal with it. The biggest way to make a difference is to combine trips and avoid the short convenience trips to the local corner store.
      • 9 Years Ago
      Reliability won't be very good, if you believe dozens of dissatisfied owners who post angry tales in the owner forums on the web. JD Power and CR will either validate that anger or squelch it. I do know th thing is noisy.

      The paltry increase in fuel economy - most test vehicles report 22-23 mpg) and the high price of diesel fuel makes owning a silky smooth gas V6 from Lexus, Toyota, Nissan, Honda more appealing.

      Plus - the price is hardly a bargain for a vehicle with modest interior space and a lot of plastic.

      • 9 Years Ago
      This is pathetic.

      The 1985 Jeep Cherokee turbo-diesel, when coupled with a 5 speed manual, was rated at 29 mpg in the city. TWENTY-NINE MILES PER GALLON. For those who didn't want a diesel, one could still get 23/27 from the 2.5L 4 cylinder.

      This was, of course, during the years when Renault owned a controlling interest in AMC.

      Fast forward to 2005. The best a Liberty can do is 22/26? Since when do the French out-engineer the Germans?

      Wait, could it be that the Liberty actually weighs a good 1000 lbs more than a Cherokee did? So much for modern engineering precision.

      Of course, the same has occured across the automotive spectrum. Remember when Civic CRXs were rated at 40-50+ mpg without hybrid drive, but rather old-tech carbeurated engines?

      • 9 Years Ago
      I didn't know I was a "diesel geek" until I bought my CRD in November. I run it on B20 Biodiesel (BioWillie - http://www.biowillie.com/) that I buy at my local gas station in Austin, TX. I totally dig it. So far, no problems with the Jeep and it runs great.
      • 9 Years Ago
      Ken - whenever I hear the words "you people" my ears just shut. Next time you're chatting with the uninformed minions, could you be a dear and try to mask your contempt?

      • 9 Years Ago
      #1, If you drive in congested city traffic, you are correct. But the point many "hybrid fanatics" always miss is if you live in a rural area or drive highway miles and rarely use the electric motor, you don't get better fuel economy or save any fuel! (not to mention who knows what happens when the batteries have to be disposed of, but that's whole 'nother discussion)

      It's not an either/or equation!! Hybrids are great for stop and go city driving, but diesels are better in terms of saving fuel for other driving conditions. There is no silver bullet!! Why can't all the technologies that can cut fuel consumption be embraced? Wouldn't that be the best scenario? Why does one person's point of view have to be the answer for everyone else in existence? Instead of hating everything different than what you think is correct, look at the whole picture. Everyone driving hybrids won't necessarily save gazillions of gallons of gas. Yes, it will reduce fuel consumption, but depending on your driving conditions, other technologies might save more fuel in that instance.
      • 9 Years Ago
      I bought a Liberty CRD last September and have put almost 15k miles on it without any problems. Fuel economy isn't that great (21 mpg average) for the first few thousand miles, but after that it only gets better. Normal highway driving at 70 mph will get about 25 mpg; 65 mph will get closer to 27 mph. As long as you aren't driving like a NASCAR wannabe, it will get at least as many mpg as the sticker claims. The 500 mile range of the CRD was a big factor for me. Also, in my area bio-diesel is available, whereas E85 is not. Even without the diesel, I think the Liberty is better for me than any of the competion. Others may have different needs and tastes, but I'm happy with mine.
      • 9 Years Ago
      Steve, unfortunately we can't get the excellent diesels from Europe because we don't have Europe's excellent diesel fuel. I think (and I may have my dates wrong here) that there was a mandate to adopt that low-sulfer diesel here by 2007, but Bush squashed it about a year ago because... I don't know, clean diesel doesn't like freedom or something.

      • 9 Years Ago
      I have 437,000 kms (275,000 miles) on my 1999 1/2 VW Jetta TDI bought new. I have no trouble getting 55 mpg and on extended trips with cruise control at the speed limit managed 69 mpg on one occasion (US gallon = .833 US gallon - I live in Canada). Diesel fuel is consistently cheaper than gas here - as it should be because it is cheaper to refine. We have also had higher quality diesel available here for the past 3 years and I can notice a decrease in performance when I drive in the US. I am baffled as to why passenger trucks with diesel motors get such poor fuel economy. It seems that the only advantage over gas is the extra torque. I would not buy another VW TDI for the following reasons:
      1. Terrible dealer network with clueless technicians.
      2. Timing belt must be replaced at 100,000 kms (60,000 miles)at $650.00-700.00.
      3. Expensive fuel and oil filters.
      4. Poor turbos - replaced twice.
      5. MAF sensor constantly fails - my CEL has been on for 3 years and the idiots at VW don't have a clue why.
      6. Driver's side headlight fails every 3 or 4 months as does the passenger side tailight.
      7. Interior looks great initially but they are not durable. Rubberized plastic falls apart, glovebox hinges break, dash vents jam and stop working, radio has virtually no AM reception, windows fall into doors.
      Also have 2003 Acura CL 6-speed at 192450 kms (120000 miles) without a single problem - not one, not ever. Don't even know how good the dealer is because I've never been back - serviced either myself or at local Honda dealership. Acura now my wife's driver. I just purchased Infiniti G35 6MT Coupe. Put on 16000 kms in last 5 weeks on business trip through Montana, Idaho, Oregon, California and Arizona - fantastic car. Will use TDI as beater for now.
      My experience with the VW has turned me away from diesels just as the early GM diesels punished many car buyers for their desire to try something new. I will never give VW another opportunity to screw me over just as I have avoided GM for 20 years because of their transgressions. But based on my experience with Japanese manufacturers, I will consider a deisel powered vehicle from them if they were to offer one in North America.
      • 9 Years Ago
      Has anyone actually driven a CRD off-road and can comment on its torque? I was wondering because everyone always assumes it will great but while my Golf TDI had peak torque at 1900 rpm it had hardly any at 1000 rpm. There was a definite flat spot at the beginning and I would think that ramp up time might be a problem.
      • 9 Years Ago
      It's not sitting on dealer lots because few are being made. Some dealers around here have dozens of Libertys on the lot, not one of them a diesel.

      I hunted around and managed to find ONE, though. It's just not up to snuff. And any savings in fuel consumption are canceled out by the price of diesel fuel these days. Chrysler also puts a smaller rebate on the diesel.

      In this context, I suppose it is amazing they sold 10,000.

      My review: http://www.epinions.com/content_210733469316

      The diesel in the E-Class is far more impressive.

      My review of that one: http://www.epinions.com/content_208751922820
      • 9 Years Ago
      Dear European Automobile manufacturers:

      Please, please, PLEASE bring the fantastic diesel engines that we all read about to the US as soon as possible. Bring them as an option for every model line that you sell so that smart buyers can have the option of purchasing them to reap their benefits.

      Also, please forward this to American and Japanese manufacturers who make great diesels in Europe and elsewhere that we don't see here.


      ps - California please quit holding up the works!
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