Daimler chairman Dieter Zetsche is bullish on the adoption of diesel in the United States. At the ECO:nomics conference, Zetsche told the Wall Street Journal that Daimler is very happy with its diesel accomplishments over the last two years (see video below the fold). According to Zetsche, in the states where they are currently available, Daimler's diesel SUVs are showing twenty percent take rates and diesel cars are showing twelve percent take rates. Zetsche is confident Daimler will see the same share when diesel is offered in all 50 states. While very popular in Europe (where around half the cars are oil burners), diesel has yet to take hold in America, where only 3.5 percent of new car sales are diesels.
In the video, Zetsche was also asked about the public's unwillingness to pay for higher fuel economy. Zetsche said he thinks the public is only willing to pay for fuel saving technology that can be paid back in a short time, three to four years at the most. On the economy, Zetsche said the slowdown has not had much impact on Daimler's business so far. This means that Daimler customers are not jumping on the subway, at least not the ones that sell real estate, he joked.

[Source: Wall Street Journal]

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