• 152
Diesel cars like the Audi A7 TDI can save you lots of c... Diesel cars like the Audi A7 TDI can save you lots of cash (Audi).
Between car payments, auto insurance, fuel costs, repairs and maintenance, buying a new car can be an expensive endeavor. One of the ways to save money on overall costs is to buy a diesel car, they typically save buyers $2,000 to $6,000 in total ownership costs over three to five years when compared to similar gasoline models, according to research by the University of Michigan's Transportation Research Institute (UMTRI).

While diesel cars cost more initially -- they tend to have higher sticker prices -- they provide overall savings because they are more fuel efficient and depreciate at a slower rate than similar gasoline models. UMTRI's research compared 12 diesel vehicles to their gasoline counterparts and found they achieved between eight and 44 percent higher miles per gallon, resulting in ten to 29 percent lower fuel costs overall. When looking at depreciation, UMTRI found that 11 of the 12 diesel cars analyzed held their value better than their gas counterparts during the first three years of ownership, with eight logging savings of 17 to 46 percent. Over five years, there was an overall savings of 10 to 39 percent in depreciation costs.

"Though there are some exceptions, the overall direction of the results supports the idea that diesel vehicles compete well within the U.S. market," said UMTRI researcher Bruce Belzowski.

Both mass-market and luxury diesel vehicles are currently available in America. They generally don't stand out, as they are simply a familiar vehicle with a diesel engine plopped inside -- there are no diesel-only cars here in the States.

For mass market cars, UMTRI compared the total ownership cost savings for three Volkswagen models: Jetta, Jetta SportWagen and Golf. It found that the diesel-powered Golf provided the biggest savings compared to its gasoline counterpart over three years, with drivers spending $5,013 less on total ownership costs than they would on the standard Golf. The Golf was followed by the Jetta SportWagen ($3,389) and the Jetta ($3,128).

In general, savings over the first three years of ownership were even larger when comparing luxury models. The diesel Mercedes-Benz GL-Class saved a whopping $13,514 over its gasoline counterpart, while the diesel Volkswagen Touareg crossover saved $7,819 and the diesel Mercedes-Benz R-Class saved $5,951.

There are currently 27 diesel cars on the market that you can buy or lease new, as well as plenty of used options. While buying a used diesel car would not net as substantial savings because most of the depreciation cost occurs in the first year of ownership, you can still save a bunch in fuel costs.

For performance enthusiasts, the increasing number of diesel choices means more alternatives for cars that are fun to drive. This is because diesel cars typically offer more torque -- and, thus, faster acceleration -- at lower rpm than their gasoline counterparts. For example, the 2014 Volkswagen Jetta TDI Value Edition produces 140 horsepower and 236 lb-ft of torque at 1,750 rpm – all while getting an EPA-estimated 42 highway mpg. The 2014 Volkswagen Jetta SE produces 170 horsepower and 184 lb-ft of torque at 1,500 rpm, getting an EPA-estimated 36 mpg on the highway.

In the coming years, there will be even more diesel passenger vehicles on the market, thanks to the federal fuel economy standards that are rolling into place. By the next decade, the availability of clean diesel is expected to grow dramatically, comprising between 7.2 to 17.8 percent of new car sales, according to a study by the Fuels Institute.



I'm reporting this comment as:

Reported comments and users are reviewed by Autoblog staff 24 hours a day, seven days a week to determine whether they violate Community Guideline. Accounts are penalized for Community Guidelines violations and serious or repeated violations can lead to account termination.


    • 1 Second Ago
  • 152 Comments
      Joe
      • 10 Months Ago
      The fact that diesel fuel costs 10-20% more and that oil changes, fuel filters, and other service erodes these figures. Oil change for my F-350 Ford P/U costs $139.00, when I don't need filters, over $200 when I do (about every third oil change. Then factor in the $6,000 initial cost. I can buy a lot of fuel for this money. Get with the program and quiy misleading folks. Joe
      denismcgrane
      • 9 Months Ago
      I have a Toyota Landcruiser Prado SUV. I bought it new in 2001. It is a top of the range 3 litre turbo diesel model. It gets excellent fuel consumption, good power and acceleration. It has served as a tow vehicle for each of the two caravans we've owned. It has been fantastically reliable. It has done 175000 kms, including two longs trips towing our van. It took us from Sydney NSW to North Queensland for a trip lasting 3 months and for a two month trip down to Victoria for a trip along the Twelve Apostles coastal road. The only major repairs in that time has been a change of the drive belt in the normal service time ($450 AUD all up) and just weeks ago the replacement of the steering rack and minor repairs of the boots on the front suspension (totalling $1100 AUD all up). Servicing costs are fine providing you always seek a number of quotes (service is where dealers make their profits). Because it is a diesel services are 10000 kms, but the 5000 kms in between are for an oil change which I always do my self. So don't believe it if anyone says that diesels are expensive to maintain and service. I won't part with mine! And I won't even mention the fantastic fuel consumption achieved on turbo diesels.
      debbie
      • 9 Months Ago
      You don't have to buy an expensive diesel vehicle to save on overall. Just cut your trips down a little and you can save more than you realize. And as for maintenance, many auto manufacturers are offering free oil changes and even tires for the life of the vehicle when you buy a new car. The problem is that people don't take the time to get or do the maintenance. and the drive like there's no tomorrow. Ragging on the engine and treating the car like it is a tank is no way to prolong the life of a car. Try walking that block and a half to the c-store or scheduling shopping trips to several stores on a one day shopping trip. The kids can ride the school bus. It won't kill them. Buy sodas and keep plenty of them on hand. That way you don't have to drive a couple of blocks to the store to buy one. Anything that doesn't require refrigeration can be bought in bulk and store in a closet to save on trips to the store. Give public transportation a chance - and share the ride with a coworker who lives close. You drive one week, they drive the next. We are way to enamored with the four wheeled conveyance. We could stop in at the sore with a list on the way home from work and save a little time and gas. Think about it. As high as gas prices have gotten, it is worth a little planning in the long run.
      barryaclarke
      • 9 Months Ago
      I can't understand why they don't produce a diesel hybrid? Gasoline hybrids achieve superior gas mileage in town, but suffer on the highway with less miles per gallon than in town. If you had a diesel hybrid, you would have a win win situation..............
      jerry33904
      • 9 Months Ago
      love my Audi TDI A6
      stengernc
      • 9 Months Ago
      My Tesla beats them all, in addition it gets charged from the Sun which is free. It does not leak gas, diesel, oil, or hydraulic fluids, it creates no pollution and no engine sounds....nothing like saving the planet, the air, the road surfaces. Tesla's don't ruin roads like combustion engines with transmissions do.
        Drew
        • 9 Months Ago
        @stengernc
        Aside from occasionally bursting into flames, the Tesla is a great car. Buy some good flame retardent underwear and hit the road. By the way, how do transmissions hurt the roads, just curious.
        rodneyvgt
        • 9 Months Ago
        @stengernc
        Can you drive 600 miles without a fill up? or pull a 15,000 lb trailer?
        GaryNPS
        • 9 Months Ago
        @stengernc
        If you had a solar roof on a Tesla, you would have to leave it in full sunlight for 170 straight days to fully charge the batteries once. (1/2 KW per day - 85 KW battery capacity.)
      welcom joyce
      • 9 Months Ago
      i now put just plane 93 prem in my dodge no ethanol my fuel milage went up 4.5 mpg and my exzaust temp droped also.ethanol fuels only lowers your fuel mpg it does nothing to the clean air it allso gets your pistons hoter than they should be.
      • 9 Months Ago
      if this country allowed all diesel vehicles, here is a comparison. A 2014 Honda Civic EX gets 30 miles in city, 39 highway, so Honda says 33 mpg average with the 1.8L 4 banger. The civic EX diesel in Europe gets 62.8 mpg average in a 1.6L 4 banger. HP is only 10 difference, the diesel has 115 more torque pounds. they both have an 11.9 gallon tank. Gas 393 miles on full tank, diesel 747 miles on full tank. Diesel engines do cost more to repair, because they are made with stronger metal, so more durability (less repairs). All companies make diesel engines just look up a European dealership to see the vehicle specs, and compare to gas engines. Oh and diesel exhaust is far less dangerous than gas.
      GaryNPS
      • 9 Months Ago
      Here, diesel fuel is priced 15% higher than unleaded regular - that basically negates the difference between the 36MPG gas Jetta and the 42MPG TDI Jetta (at least for fuel costs).
      • 9 Months Ago
      my Son can take a GMC and get 50+ mpg and run like stripped ape too. it's all in the tuning and fuel it's amazing Scott Edwards shop manger Tom Wood ford
      Michael
      • 9 Months Ago
      Love diesels. Cost to maintain is cheaper and esaier. Change oil and filters and you're done. Yes , diesel fuel cost more but you can thank the government for that. It's cheaper to produce diesel fuel than gasoline, but the government puts a higher tax on it. Re sale value is higher for the diesel powered autos and trucks. It takes a few mnutes to fill up instead of hours for an electric. Trying going on a trip with an electric car, stopping every 150 miles for half a day to recharge. It could take days to go 1000 miles. Also with the power grid in this country, can you imagine.the brown outs and grid failures when we start plugging in a few million cars, so the power plants will be consuming more fuel now. Why do you think the government wants to raise the gas tax? We are being to economical, and not buying as much gas as before. If you conserve, we are going to tax you more for doing that! It's a vecious circle!!
      • 9 Months Ago
      Maybe I missed it, but I'm not sure they mentioned the cost of diesel fuel vs. gasoline. In NY, where I live, a gallon of regular gas in my neighborhood is $3.89 (at it's lowest) and a gallon of diesel is $4.25 (at it's lowest). Not that .36 is a lot but it could add up over time....a 12 gallon fill up would cost ~$4.32 more for diesel vs. gas. That could add up over a year depending on how many times you fill up, etc....Maybe the offset is filling up less because of the better mileage......not sure if it would fully offset the price difference though.
        hersheybar10
        • 9 Months Ago
        Huh, well diesel tends to fluctuate alot, or perhaps gasoline fluctuates alot around diesel. Here in Portland, OR diesel is around 25 cents below fuel prices. My gas station has regular for 3.88/gal while diesel is 3.67/gal. When I lived in California, they tended to be equal or closer to equal. Sometimes diesel was higher by a few cents.
        • 9 Months Ago
        See my earlier post...diesel is more but the cost savings with the increased mpg is worth it.
        elfin662
        • 9 Months Ago
        In East texas the gas to diesel cost difference is about 80 cents. So a deisel would have to get about 20% better gas mileage to be equal.
    • Load More Comments