Lutz is Right: "Diesels Are Not the Answer"
During our recent audience with GM Car Czar Bob Lutz, Maximum Bob proclaimed "diesels are not the answer." While cynics might say that even a stopped clock is right twice a day, props to Bob for doing the math. Reuters reports the average price for a gallon of diesel has hit $4.06. It's as high as $4.60/gallon in places. As MB pointed out, "asking people to pay a 20 percent premium for a diesel engine and a 20 percent premium at the pump makes no sense at all." True dat. Without huge gains in fuel economy over regular gasoline counterparts, manufacturers are going to have a hard time getting people to switch to diesel-powered propulsion. The next step: the feds intercede to drive down the cost of diesel and diesel cars, as they are doing with ethanol and E85-compatible vehicles. And then high mileage U.S. oil burners will fly off the showroom floor. [Note to Bob: will GM be ready?] Lest we forget, $4.00/gallon diesel has a huge impact on our truck-based shipping infrastructure. And that could be a BIG problem… News of an April first trucker's strike to follow.