New US-Built VW a Diesel?

Edward Niedermeyer
by Edward Niedermeyer
new us built vw a diesel

Despite our several posts on the subject, the only thing resembling real news to come out of the Audi High Mileage Marathon is that a TDI version of the A3 will be coming to America. Or, as The German Car Blog reports using our trademark phrase, not. Winding Road say it’s officially on for next year. But Autoblog Green say nein, it’s still under consideration. Anyway, while the Audiphiles duke it out over that little controversy, the real news comes to us via the Chattanooga Times Free Press, who report that VW will sell diesel versions of the Civic-fighter it will be building at the new Tennessee plant. Unfortunately, the story is too full of “green jobs” pablum from local pols to tell us if the engines will be built stateside or shipped in from parts globalized. Either way, VW seems to be continuing its diesel approach in the states, despite our high prices for the oily stuff. With VW’s hybrid development lagging behind the industry leaders, diesel makes sense for them in the short-run (if only for the universally gushing reviews). Still, the new America-only mid-sized car to be built in Chattanooga is supposed to be a big volume booster for VW. One has to wonder how much a diesel version will help that effort, barring some kind of (unexpected) increase in diesel refining capacity.

Join the conversation
4 of 7 comments
  • Joeaverage Joeaverage on Oct 15, 2008

    Go VW TDI! I hope it all comes true. I hear from 'nooga relatives that VW news is in every newspaper every day and they'd like a change of topic... :)

  • EEGeek EEGeek on Oct 15, 2008
    barring some kind of (unexpected) increase in diesel refining capacity I'm not sure you'd call it unexpected, but increased diesel refining capacity will be coming online in the next couple of years. I'll not hazard a guess on what that means for prices, but I thought it was interesting. From Marathon Petroleum announced in 2007 an expansion of its Garyville (LA) refinery to increase production by 180,000 barrels/day or 1.2 billion gallons of distillate products annually. Shell Oil Products US announced an expansion of its Port Arthur (TX) that will make it able to refine 600,000 barrels/day, and make it the largest US refinery. It currently produces 52,000 b/d of distillate products. Valero plans to spend $3.8 billion through 2011 to increase diesel production at two of its 17 refineries, the ones in Port Arthur and St. Charles, La. The investment will yield an additional 103,000 barrels per day of ultra‐low sulfur diesel coming online in 2010. NuStar Energy LP is considering adding more than $300 million in diesel‐making equipment at one of two U.S. asphalt refineries it acquired recently from Venezuela. It's making the diesel investment in the one on the Delaware River. New diesel production there could start in 2011. Tesoro Corp. is switching some gasoline production to diesel without making any large equipment investments. Executives at San Antonio‐based Tesoro declined to say how much more diesel is being produced, but the Los Angeles refinery already has shifted production to make 7,000 to 9,000 additional barrels of distillates, including diesel, per day.
  • Chuckgoolsbee Chuckgoolsbee on Oct 15, 2008

    The only Diesel refining capacity I care about is what comes out of my barn. Bring on more choices for Diesels please. --chuck

  • Mirko Reinhardt Mirko Reinhardt on Oct 16, 2008

    I had a ride in the A3 with the new common rail TDI yesterday. Very impressive, much quieter and smoother than Ye Olde Pumpe-Düse.