Mercedes is expecting big things from its Bluetec badge, starting with its line of SUVs and crossovers. In fact, the German automaker expects fifteen percent of all if its utility vehicles to be sold with diesel engines. We think that figure may even be a bit low, considering that MB nearly sells that percentage already and is unable to sell the vehicles in the huge California market, among others. Though diesel prices are currently hovering a bit higher than already high gasoline prices, both Mercedes-Benz and AutoblogGreen expect that the roughly $1,000 Bluetec diesel premium will pay for itself in just over a year. When we got our first drive in the clean-diesel Benzes, we managed rather impressive mileage numbers in all three vehicles, both on the highway and in city driving.
Expect to see more of Mercedes' big diesel utes in green advertising. Stephen Cannon, vice president of marketing for Mercedes-Benz USA says, "We would like to give that Bluetec logo as much cachet as the term hybrid has." That will take some major marketing push, as the word "hybrid" is synonymous with green autos for many Americans.
[Source: Automotive News - sub. req'd]