In this era of sky-high energy prices, more Americans are discovering diesel as a fuel-sipping alternative to gasoline that does not require sacrifices in power and performance. Diesel is the world's most efficient internal combustion engine - returning 20 to 40 percent greater fuel efficiency than comparable gasoline engines.
Annual registration of diesel passenger vehicles has grown by 80 percent, from just over 300,000 in 2000 to nearly 550,000 in 2005. And most analysts expect this trend to continue. Researchers at J.D. Power and Associates predict that diesel sales will triple in the next 10 years, growing to more than 10 percent of U.S. vehicle sales by 2015 - up from 3.6 percent in 2005.
Greater use of diesel technology would help the U.S. reduce petroleum consumption and improve energy security. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency estimates that America could save up to 1.4 million barrels of oil per day - an amount equivalent to the oil we currently import from Saudi Arabia - if one-third of U.S. cars, pickup trucks and SUVs were diesel-powered.