We were at an Audi winter diesel driving event at Niagara Falls,and the Audi group gave us some interesting facts on why performance and fuel efficiency don’t have to be a contradiction:
1. Americans consume 21 million barrels of oil a day.
2. At $3.00 a gallon, Americans are noticing – according to the Civil Society Institute, 51% of Americans cite fuel prices as their number 1 economic worry for 2008.
3. Americans don’t want to give up their SUVs, they like them. Americans are overworked, overwhelmed and out of time. They want performance, efficiency and eco-friendly solutions all at once.
4. Now that diesel fuel is down to 15 parts per million, the same as in Europe, diesel vehicles are being brought into the United States. Without this clean fuel the vehicles would not have been able to meet the LEV II Bin 5 clean diesel regulations.
5. Audi says the SUV diesel market is expected to reach 23% of the United States market by 2014. The total diesel mix of all vehicles by 2014 is expected to be 15 percent. The price of gasoline will be estimated at $4.88 a gallon.
6. The EPA has said that if 1/3 of all American cars were diesel, the United States would save 1.4 million barrels a day. 60% of our oil is imported, 68% is used for transportation. If we reduced our consumption by 1.4 million barrels a day, we would be reducing our foreign consumption by roughly 12 percent.
7. Audi has reduced their fuel consumption in their fleet by 30% since 1995, the biggest reduction coming with the introduction of Audi’s TDI engine.
Here is a technical look at the TDI history and TDI engine.