Since Volkswagen relaunched the Jetta TDI in late 2008 with an updated 50-state legal engine, diesel has been a major sales driver for the German company and CEO Stefan Jacoby expects that trend to continue in the coming years. Speaking at the Automotive News World Congress last week, Jacoby told the audience that VW expects new diesel introductions to account for a hefty 20-30 percent share of each model that comes to market.
The TDI has accounted for between 30 and 40 percent of Jetta sales since it launched and nearly all Jetta Sportwagens are diesels. Similarly, the Touareg TDI accounts for over one-third of the SUV's sales. Over the next few years, a redesigned Jetta and the new Tennessee-built mid-sized car will also have diesel options. If the luxury Phaeton returns, it too will go TDI.
Like Mercedes-Benz, Volkswagen and Audi have been very aggressive in pricing diesel vehicles, with a typical price premium of $2,000 over a similarly-equipped gas-engined model.