Number of Diesels in U.S. Up for 2015 Despite Dieselgate

By Paul Riegler on 10 June 2016
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The number of diesel passenger cars, SUVs, vans, and pick-up trucks on the road in the United States increased slightly in 2015, although a combination of lower fuel prices and an emissions scandal caused many buyers to purchase petrol-powered cars.

Dieselgate brought the diesel market in the United States to a virtual standstill when Volkswagen exited it in September after admitting it had installed software that lowered vehicle emissions during tests so the cars would meet EPA standards. As a consequence, buyers showed reluctance to purchase other diesels on the market including those from Audi, BMW, Chevrolet, Jeep, Mercedes-Benz, and Porsche.

Helped largely by strong sales of diesel-powered SUVs, pick-ups, and vans, the number of diesel passenger vehicles on the road in the United States rose by 4.3% to 7.7 million in calendar year 2015. In the same period, the number of hybrids on the road was up 9.2% to 3.6 million.

The findings come from an analysis of 2015 vehicle-in-operation data prepared by IHS Automotive, a research firm.

All but two states, California and Massachusetts, have more diesel registrations than hybrid registrations, according to a statement from the Diesel Technology Forum, an automotive industry consortium. California, Tennessee, Idaho, Nevada, and Utah saw the fastest growth in diesel registrations, while the states with the most diesels were California, Texas, Florida, Pennsylvania, and Washington.

(Photo: Accura Media Group)

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