• Apr 18, 2007
Looks like the Germans won't be the only automakers bringing more diesels to the States over the next few years. CEO Carlos Ghosn said Nissan will dip into their European offerings and bring a clean diesel vehicle to the United States by 2010. The vehicle he was referring to is the Maxima, which has gradually become a near-luxury platform-mate of the Altima, much like the Avalon is to the Camry. Maybe this helps move it even closer towards the BMW, Mercedes and Audi offerings. Ghosn mentioned the clean diesel Maxima while addressing the Council on Foreign Relations. To go along with their first-ever clean diesel in the States, Ghosn said Nissan will also introduce other clean diesel vehicles in Japan and China. Europe already gets Nissans with this clean diesel technology. So, with Mitsubishi, Honda and now Nissan announcing they are developing diesels for the North American market, we can officially say that diesels are the new black hybrid. With low-sulfur diesel fuel now available and fuel prices continuing to stay at such high levels, diesels indeed seem to make a lot of sense for economy-minded individuals.

[Source: Nissan]

PRESS RELEASE:

Nissan Commits to Clean Diesel Engine in Maxima in 2010

WASHINGTON, D.C. (April 18, 2007) -- Nissan today announced its plans to launch its first clean diesel engine in the United States for use in the Nissan Maxima in 2010. The passenger car will be powered by an all-new Alliance engine co-developed with its partner, Renault, and will clear stringent U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Tier II Bin 5 emissions requirements. Further details about the car, including its launch date, will be announced later.

"Nissan is fully engaged in reducing emissions and improving fuel economy and efficiency. Launching a clean diesel engine in the U.S. will offer customers the benefits of fuel economy, CO2 reduction and a satisfying, fun-to-drive performance that is a hallmark of the Nissan brand," said Carlos Ghosn, President and CEO of Nissan Motor Co., Ltd., in a speech at the Council on Foreign Relations. "You can expect to see more diesel engines in our product lineup in Europe, Japan, North America and China by fiscal year 2010."

Nissan already has clean diesel engines in Europe offering significant fuel efficiency and the ability to run on bio-diesel fuel blends. Together, this combination reduces CO2 emissions and dependence on pure petroleum-based fuels. During the first half of fiscal year 2007, Nissan will introduce the new Euro 4-compliant, two-liter-class diesel engine in Europe. By fiscal year 2010, Nissan will launch vehicles with clean diesel engines in Japan, the United States and China.

This initiative is part of Nissan's plan to reduce CO2 emissions for the future as outlined in Nissan Green Program 2010, the company's mid-term environmental strategy. Nissan will be investing in a variety of technologies including fuel cell cars, hybrid cars, biofuel-based cars, electric vehicles, improvement in gasoline engines and clean diesels. The company is committed to bringing the right technology to the right market at the right time with the right value to the customer.

In North America, Nissan operations include automotive styling, design, engineering, consumer and corporate financing, sales and marketing, distribution and manufacturing. More information about Nissan in North America and the complete line of Nissan and Infiniti vehicles can be found online at www.NissanUSA.com and www.infiniti.com.


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  • 18 Comments
      • 7 Years Ago
      Hats off to another auto manufactuer...bring on the diesls....and make it a hybrid while you're at it.

      It's a step in the right direction to LOWER our total use of petroleum based fuels....diesels are not the total answer but could play a highly significant part in doing so.
      It is a proven ,durable power plant that has recently been improved by the advent of "cleaner" technology offering overall superior fuel mileage when compared to gasoline engines.

      It is technology we have now. Use it until the newer possible future technologies can be refined and made available for an affordable price.

      Diesel should not be only for the economy minded but for the sensible minded buyer also.

      Perhaps Nissan will offer more vehicle choices that will be powered by diesel engines as they become more accepted by the N.American buyers.
      • 7 Years Ago
      Lose the CVT and I'll consider it.
      • 7 Years Ago
      A diesel Nissan would be nice but, I prefer the Altima.
      • 7 Years Ago
      Good points all around re:torque. I'll bet since Nissan owns some or most of Jatco they're developing a tranny along with the engine.

      What's perplexing right now in the U.S. is that for 50+ years diesel was cheaper than gas, as it should be. Less refining required, despite higher BTUs. The big oil companies have rigged the system to make it unattractive by lobbying behind the scenes for tight regulations and playing with diesel fuel prices.

      The question is whether the congress or the oil companies will ever stop playing games and make diesel as viable here as it has been for years in Europe.
      • 7 Years Ago
      Interesting.

      I have a 2004 Maxima (6spd. manual transmission, natch) and am interested in the next generation car. The opportunity to consider a diesel for improved gas mileage with equal performance would be intriguing.

      • 7 Years Ago
      rear wheel drive, I hope?
      • 7 Years Ago
      A new diesel to the market is a great idea. For those who feel a diesel in a large car is a bad idea, let me say this. Larger cars need diesel engines more than smaller ones because larger cars are more prone to heavy fuel use.
      Torque steer is not compulsory in a front drive car with lots of torque. That is a function of asymetrical prop shafts. If the manufacturer employs prop shafts that are equal in length then torque steer is all but eliminated. That's why Audis have longitudinal engines in their front drive cars. Transverse applications can have equal-length prop shafts as well by mounting the differential housing of the transmission behind the engine, instead of beside it (like the GM 3T40 transmissions).
      To the nay-sayers, stop thinking about standing beside a Maxima and it sounding like a Power-Stroke. Those who have stood beside an Audi Q7 3.0TDI will understand what modern diesel motoring is all about.
      • 7 Years Ago
      I agree with your comment. Nissan needs to reinvent the Maxima. Assuming it will be a really good diesel (like how a MB E320 Bluetec compares to an E350), this might be what sets the Maxima apart from the Altima.

      With Toyota, Avalon speaks for luxury over Camry. With Nissan, Maxima has been more sport than Altima, but ever since the Altimas became available with the V6, I'm sure it didn't help Maxima sales.

      Some of you may rememeber that Nissan sold Diesel Maximas back in the early 80's. It was slow and didn't fit the character of the car, my mom passed it up over the gas-engined version with the smooth-revving L24E.

      The new diesel will have to be really good and actually fun to drive. If the new engine will be that good, offer it with a 6-speed manual. It should have spectacular fuel economy to boot.
      • 7 Years Ago
      I hope Nissan will offer a diesel option in the Versa. My next new car will be a diesel & I hope I don't have to settle for a VW with its poor reliability/durability record.
      • 7 Years Ago
      Awesome. That'll give them 2 years to sell it before it has to be withdrawn in 2012 because it can't meet the new emissions regulations.

      The good news for them is that after 2012, Diesel emissions regulations will (finally!) be equivalent to gas regs, so they shouldn't be dropping precipitously any more after that.
      Jonathan Hicks
      • 7 Years Ago
      A diesel Maxima? Ridicuilous!!! If Nissan wants to offer a diesel,they should offer it in the Sentra or Rogue instead in the Maxima. It's a very very bad idea to offer a diesel Maxima. Really.
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