• Nov 2, 2010
2010 Audi A3 TDI – Click above for high-res image gallery

Diesel is slowly making an impression here in the United States and Audi has been paying attention. Parent company Volkswagen has been selling a steady stream of diesels for many years, and the enthusiasm for the oil-burners has filtered up into the luxury segment. By 2015, Audi plans to have a diesel variant available for every volume product in its lineup.

This means we still won't see a production R8 V12 TDI, but it does mean we can look forward to seeing the A4, A6, A8 and Q5 with TDI variants. Currently, the A3 and Q7 are the only US Audis available with diesel engines. You've no doubt seen A3 TDIs rolling past you as you stop for gas, since the diesel version now accounts for nearly half of all A3 sales. 40 percent of Q7s have the diesel engine under the hood, and Audi is having trouble keeping either model in stock.

Automakers face stricter fuel economy targets in the coming years, and one way to improve their lineups' mile-per-gallon figures is by adding diesel versions across the entire range. Audi believes that by 2015, diesels will make up 20 percent of the U.S. sales volume – a vast improvement over the current 5.5 percent.



Photos copyright ©2010 Drew Phillips / AOL

[Source: Automotive News – sub. req.]


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  • 50 Comments
      • 4 Years Ago
      Bought a used '06 A4 Avant Quattro 3.2. Will be looking to buy a used A4 Avant Quattro diesel next!
      • 4 Years Ago
      No mention of the TT. Que?
        • 4 Years Ago
        it's an audi model. thus it'll be 2.0TDI-ed by 2015
      • 4 Years Ago
      YES!!! About time to see some progress with diesel's in america. I just spoke with my wallet a couple months ago and purchased a 2010 Jetta SportWagen TDI and I love it!! No DSG for me though...I'm saving the manual's with my 6 speed gearbox! When you test drive a new one I guarantee you'll stall it atleast once, but give it 2000 miles and the clutch breaks in and no more hyper-sensitive stalling issues.

      35-50 MPG, it's a real car not an egg on wheels, it has all the luxuries, and when the turbo spools up it puts a smile on my face which no hybrid is capable of accomplishing. Oh and don't forget a great chassis that is plenty fun/sporty to drive! (atleast the 2010 model is....not so sure about the "cheap" 2011 sedans)

      Forget hybrids! VW TDI is so much better!
        • 4 Years Ago
        OH!...... i can't imaging how you stall a diesel engine.

        it's not impossible, but .....
        just let the cluch come gently and even without trotle input, it should not stall.
        but don't threat is a drag strip car.
        • 4 Years Ago
        My dad lives in Luxembourg and he bought an A5 sportback 2.0 TDI with like 170 hp and 250 lb/feet. It's SO smooth and I think that's the same motor you have :) Plus he gets like 40 mpg equivalent in a super sporty car!!

        Diesels make a lot more sense than traditional engines...
        • 4 Years Ago
        @Arkz: Diesel...A4...manual? Now, if you'd said Avant, too, I'd have to come to your country and stea...er...borrow your car.
      • 4 Years Ago
      Diesels suck.
      Try 1/2 hour stuck in traffic in Paris or any other big metro in Europe.
      80% of their cars are Diesels and the smell is so bad you have to have your AC on recirculation. Headaches guaranteed ;-(
      Diesels are fine in the country side but in congested areas, it is hell. It is noisy and smelly.
        • 4 Years Ago
        You obviously need to educate yourself on Clean Diesel fuel and engines that burn as clean as all the econo gas cars with significantly more power and 20-30% better fuel economy.

        You're living in the 80's dude...wake up and smell my TDI tailpipe...what's that? You don't smell anything? Huh...neither do I...pretty cool huh!

        I'll take TDI over hybrid any day!
        • 4 Years Ago
        You obviously haven't been in Paris during the past 30 years.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Your comment is completely false! I just got back from Paris Thursday. You'll smell more diesel fumes coming from a Chevy, Ford, or Dodge truck than any of the cars there! The diesels are so clean, the only way to tell they are diesels was to really listen to the engines. Even then, it was very difficult to figure out. If you don't have facts to back up what you're saying, STFU! We're not talking about the diesels from 30 years ago when you visited, if you've ever even been to Paris, which I doubt based on your comment. As for me, bring on the diesels in the USA! Great news!
        • 4 Years Ago
        Additionally, new technology diesels don't suffer from the same issues that diesels of yore did. Particulate filters being a large part of it.

        Any new diesel vehicle that is sold in the US has to adhere to the toughest diesel emissions standards in the world.
      • 4 Years Ago
      Hopefully VW will do the same (for obvious reasons) and hopefully other automakers will follow as well. Hate on diesels for whatever reasons you want, but there's no reason why automakers shouldn't offer a diesel option for those who want them. Who'd want them? Folks like me, who drive waaay too many highway miles. Hybrids are great for city, but diesels still get better hwy. Perhaps the diesel Touareg will finally be available in CA?
        • 4 Years Ago
        Nevermind, apparently it is. When did that happen?
        • 4 Years Ago
        "Perhaps the diesel Touareg will finally be available in CA?"

        Um... it's been selling here for a while. k thanks.
        • 4 Years Ago
        When they came out with the 50-state legal TDI for the '9MY I believe.
        The previous V10 TDI wasn't available in CARB states but as far as I know, the 3.0L TDI version has been 50 state legal since it debuted here.

        fueleconomy.gov shows the scores for CARB states for the 2011 model but doesn't list any air pollution scores for the 2009 and 2010 models. The engine is the same though to the best of my knowledge.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Yep, in 2009 the Treg received the 3.0 V6 TDI and was 50 state compliant. No more V10.

        I am seriously considering the 2011, with the weight reduction and cleaned up looks. Waiting for them to arrive so I can take a look.
      • 4 Years Ago
      I've read numerous complaints of disintegrating high-pressure fuel pumps and bad North American diesel fuel each causing extremely expensive repairs. Any comments?
      • 4 Years Ago
      Give me a S3 TDI quattro manual :)
      • 4 Years Ago
      A5 TDI, A5 TDI, A5 TDI!

      SOLD SOLD SOLD.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Took a picture of one in the Czech Republic in April 2010. When I show it to the Audi faithful, they begin to drool....

        I'm thinking, if they can keep selling A4 Avants, they might have a barely-used TDI just in time for me to replace my B7 A4 Avant. (But, 3.0 TDI, please.)
        • 4 Years Ago
        Yeah i've driven it, it's awesome, cheaper than the s5 (v8), almost as quick, double the economy, I cannot wait, once they hit the order books i'll grab one in sepang blue. I'm guessing it'll be closer to 2015 than 2013 like the Q5 TDI so I'm aiming to pay cash :P
      • 4 Years Ago
      This is music to my ears...thank you Audi for not completely buying into the hybrid hype!
      • 4 Years Ago
      Your hapiness would last only until the first non-scheduled visit to your friendly neighborhood VW dealer :) ... after the 6-7 visit, most VW owners develop an immense hate for VW. Tried and true.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Most VAG owners ditch the dealer after the first visit. That's why there are so many independent "european" specialists.
      • 4 Years Ago
      Ok, cool for the North-America market :D
      There are allready diesel engines in all VAG cars even more diesel that gasoline over here (Europe, The Netherlands) :D

      But why are nearly all North-Americans afraid of diesel?
        • 4 Years Ago
        Nobody is "afraid" of diesels in the US. They just don't make any financial sense. Forget the 10-20 people on Autoblog that swear up and down about diesels. VW is about the only automaker that sells diesels in the US and they are only selling a few thousand a month out of about 1 million monthly sales.
        • 4 Years Ago
        30 some odd years ago we had horrible diesels here and most consumers cant seem to divorce their minds from that and see how much diesels have changed in the intervening decades or so.

        Combine that with the fact that most automakers don't offer any diesel options and you get hardly any diesel sales.

        VW and Audi have seen great response to their newer TDI offerings however. The diesels make up a large share of their sales(in the models a TDI is offered in) despite their higher pricing. I also see a fair amount of ML320 CDI's as well. Seems as though half of them I see are CDI's.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Diesel is more expensive than the premium gas and so it doesn't make economical sense to buy and own. But then buying a hybrid or an electric car doesn't make economical sense either but people still do buy them.

        Diesel cars should cost 1000$ more than their petrol counterpart but instead, they are priced to compete with hybrids. for ex: a VW jetta diesel and toyota prius... But the diesel cars are more expensive to buy and operate than even hybrids. Also, the diesels are offered by the Germans and they tend to make it more expensive and less reliable.

        If any manufacturer were to offer a cheap diesel like say Ford Taurus diesel or honda accord diesel, then maybe diesels will be more prevalent.
        • 4 Years Ago
        @naturalyshocked,

        yeah, but the cars you are mentioning are ultra-expensive and only apeal to a very limited market. For the AVERAGE buyer spending more on a diesel doesn't make a whole lot of sense. My 2003 Jetta TDI by the way was no rocket. It was faster than a POS Prius (everything is), but not by much :) !

        Diesel cars do have great resale value in the US (I was shocked at how much I sold mine for, almost felt like I was taking advantage of the buyer), but that's because they are in such a limited supply.
        • 4 Years Ago
        @KGavar: Actually, diesel models sell quite well for VW... most reports peg them at 25 percent of the automakers sales. Its hard just to find a dealer with a new one on the lot.
        • 4 Years Ago
        @KGavar

        yes it does make sense.

        americans think that diesel cars are slow.
        a bmw 745D beats a hemi engine on the autobahn, 100% sure.
        or the Q7 v12 tdi

        a diesel engine is in better shape, than a gas engine on the used auto market.
        given a diesel engine can't run more than 5000 rpm.

        a diesel powered car is also more expensive on the used market.


        • 4 Years Ago
        quote from carman: - Diesel is more expensive than the premium gas and so it doesn't make economical sense to buy and own." -

        Only if you're bad at math I guess. Looking at the national average prices for fuel(which is the only way to do it since we all live different places), the current price for Regular Unleaded is $2.806/gal. and the price for Diesel is $3.067/gal. as of 11/1/2010. Info taken from http://www.eia.doe.gov/oog/info/gdu/gasdiesel.asp

        That's an increase of 9.3% in price for diesel compared to regular unleaded.
        Keep in mind that is comparing diesel to regular unleaded as well, not premium.

        All diesel vehicles will achieve much more than a 10% increase in mileage compared to its gasoline counterpart.

        For instance, the 2011Jetta TDI is rated at 34mpg combined compared to 27mpg combined for the 2.5L version. That's an increase of 26% compared to the gas version, well outweighing the 9.3% price increase. The increase for hwy mileage is even greater.

        quote from carman: - "Diesel cars should cost 1000$ more than their petrol counterpart" -

        Largely they do(give or take a few hundred dollars). Way different than the $5,000+ figure that a lot of people like to throw around.

        Look at VW's website. The price for a 2011 Jetta Sportwagon SE is $23,455. The price for a 2011 Jetta Sportwagon TDI(which is equipped like an SE) is $24,730.

        The Audi A3 Premium with the 2.0T is priced at $28,750(with the S-Tronic as the TDI has). The A3 2.0TDI Premium is priced at $30,250.

        The Mercedes-Benz ML350 BlueTec is priced $50,490. The ML350 is priced at $46,490 but doesn't include 4Matic which the BlueTec has standard, tack on $2500 for that and you are at $48,990.

        quote from carman - "If any manufacturer were to offer a cheap diesel like say Ford Taurus diesel or honda accord diesel, then maybe diesels will be more prevalent." -

        Have you priced a Taurus or Accord lately? Both have starting prices over $20k, well over for the Taurus. It's really not all that hard to do a little research you know.
      • 4 Years Ago
      All the hells, all the yeahs. Hopefully they make something to match the 335d. I'm interested in a good electric too, but I'll give them more time to get up to speed with that.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Let me rephrase that (since I can't edit!)

        My coil packs never failed. They were replaced under a recall just in case. None of my VWs have had any issues with electrical (and few other issues as well).
        • 4 Years Ago
        Of course, this is Zamafir's un-biased opinion and everything.

        *cough*R8*cough*
        • 4 Years Ago
        @Cartrash - yup, again what relivance that has is beyond me. in markets where both cars are avaliable, both compete. the 3.0TDI is already federalized for us production.

        Audis have issues, BMWs have issues, both european makers have electrical issues.

        Why you people keep trying to construct odd caveats is beyond me, i was clear in my reply. They've already made something to 'match' the 335d. That's a fact. its already on sale. It is competing according to press in markets where both cars are sold. It's just a matter of bringing it here. Not being on sale in the US does not mean it doesn't compete well in europe. which i've already addressed in my reply.

        you may want to work on comprehension.
        • 4 Years Ago
        zamafir

        You mean the 3.0 liter with 25 less bph, and lb-ft, and IS NOT available in the U.S.

        Oh yeah Audi has never had electrical problems.
        • 4 Years Ago
        @Not THAT Matt - my opnion has what to bare on the fact that anyone who has a non-jingoistic view of the automotive world and reads reviews beyond the north american shore knows that the A4 3.0TDI competes directly with the 335d in markets where it's offered.

        What next Matt, stating the Q5 competes with the X3 is some how invalidated by my avatar? The A8 no longer competes with the 7 series? any audi model that's just as quick or frugal now competes with nothing in the BMW line-up.

        Seriously man, that kool-aid you're drinking, the stuff that makes you ignore every pertinent review in markets where the car we're discussing is sold, I'd love to have some.
        • 4 Years Ago
        I've never owned an Audi or a BMW, but I will say that I've heard nothing but problems with VW's entire line-up as a whole as far as electrical problems are concerned.

        The Touareg review a few weeks back had a bunch of people comment about this from their own experience.
        • 4 Years Ago
        @not that matt: I've owned a string of VWs since the 90s, and other than the bad coil packs I haven't had anything specificly electrical go bad. They did have to replace my Nav once on my 06, and they replaced the coil packs just in case, but I've never experienced a drivability issue. In fact, I'd say my VWs have been as reliable as most cars.

        My first choice would be an A4 with the 170hp 4 banger. My daughter's 140hp Jetta TDI is a joy to drive, but an A4 with just a scooch more power would be perfect. It would likely get fairly close mileage to her Jetta. I got over 46MPG on a road trip from Seattle to the Oregon coast, up and down the coast for 2 days, then returning up the Columbia Gorge and over White Pass (elev. 5000'). Never babyed it, and great driving experience with outstanding mileage.
        • 4 Years Ago
        zamafir-

        “The A4 TDI already matches the 335d and the audi will not have more issues than the bimmer in terms of electrics”

        I do agree the cares compete but your term was “matches” with a 25 bhp, and 56 lb-ft, in performance I don’t think there is much of a “match”

        Your comments on reliability of electronics are a completely subjective. I’m Looking forward to comparisons of BMW vs. Audi reliability.

        I comprehend your original post, I’m not sure you comprehend you’re own hyperbole.

        • 4 Years Ago
        match? The A4 TDI already matches the 335d and the audi will not have more issues than the bimmer in terms of electrics.
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