Diesel Car Lineup in the U.S. for 2013 and 2014: Preview and Report

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2013 Porsche Carrera Diesel in Reutte, Austria

2013 Porsche Carrera Diesel in Reutte, Austria

Porsche became the fifth automaker to bring diesel to U.S. shores with its Cayenne, which has been available at dealerships since late summer. The diesel Cayenne  has been sold in Europe since 2009 and the same 3.0-liter V6 has also been offered in the Panamera grand tourer, although there are no plans at this time to bring that model to the U.S.

The midsize SUV is powered by the 240 horsepower V6 turbo diesel, which develops 406 pound-feet of torque. The Leipzig, Germany-built Cayenne and its diesel power plant are related to corporate cousins the Volkswagen Touareg and Audi Q7. The car is propelled from 0-60 in 7.2 seconds and has an electronically limited top speed of 135 mph.

The Cayenne Diesel is rated at 20 mpg (11.8 l/100 km) in the city and 29 mpg (8.11 l/100 km) highway.  Based on this, its range can be up to 765 miles (1231 km) on one tank of fuel. The Cayenne can also tow as much as 7,716 pounds (3,500 kilograms), which will be significantly easier with the added torque the diesel model provides.


2013 Volkswagen Beetle TDI

2013 Volkswagen Beetle TDI

The 2013 Beetle TDI began arriving on these shores in late summer and was just joined by the 2013 Beetle Convertible TDI.  The new (lower-case) Beetle and Beetle Convertible diesels get 41 mpg (5.74 l/100 km) on the highway and 28 (8.4 L/100km) in the city with a six-speed manual transmission and  and estimated 37 mpg (6.35 l/100 km) highway/28 (8.4) city with the six-speed DSG automatic.

Readers of The Diesel Driver named Volkswagen the 2012 Diesel Car Manufacturer of the Year and the Wolfsburg-based automaker continues to offer an impressive line of TDI diesel models in the U.S., including the Golf TDI, Jetta TDI, Jetta SportWagen TDI, Passat TDI, and Touareg TDI, all of which are carried over into 2013 without major changes.

The Chattanooga, Tennessee-built 2012 Passat TDI was all-new for 2012 and offers a highway range of 800 miles, with EPA ratings of 31 mpg city and 43 mpg highway (7.59 l/100km / 5.47 l/100km) when equipped with a manual transmission.

The Touareg TDI was introduced with a major redesign in 2011 and is rated at 19 mpg city and 28 highway (12.38 l/100km / 8.4 l/100km). Its corporate cousins, the Audi Q7 and Porsche Cayenne, are also available with the 3.0-liter V6 turbo diesel, which, for 2013, gets an increase in output to 240 horsepower and 406 pound-feet of torque. There are no plans to bring over the 4.2 liter V8 TDI that is currently available to buyers in Europe.

The Jetta TDI, Golf TDI and Jetta SportWagen TDI share the same drivetrain and get 30 mpg (7.8 l/100 km) in the city and 42 mpg (5.6 l/100 km) on the highway.

Jonathan Spira contributed to this article. 

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