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What Would It Take for YOU to buy a diesel car?

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  • gagricegagrice San DiegoPosts: 28,962
    I did indeed chose the "SPORT" version. In light of the diesel's drive train (TDI engine, 8 speed A/T, and suspension, there is precious little I wanted and still want and willing to pay for in the LUX and EXEC versions.

    I consider that a big bonus with VW Touareg TDI. You can get the basic diesel package without buying a lot of foo foo, if you so desire. The Sport offers the better wheels and tires that I would want. By going to the Lux you are stuck with low profile 20" wheels and tires. Not sure why they all seem to make it difficult to get what you want.
  • crkyolfrtcrkyolfrt Posts: 2,345
    Well, that's a loaded statement sorta, Shifty..Turbo'ing a diesel is the absolute best way to exploit the torque (and hp too) at very little fuel use penalty. Yes there is most definitely a fuel use penalty, but not when you consider the urge reward. It allows light-footed throttle application, yet still give reasonable go..and if ya wanna really go..at a bit of extra fuel expense...well we know that works too..

    And perhaps the best part is..because a diesel runs so efficiently from the get-go..it is far better able to deal with turbo heat..a gas engine's (longevity) killer..
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 44,780
    Oh I think you misunderstood my message. All I was saying is that a supercharger works great on a small gas engine. I always advocated that all diesels be turbocharged and that (here's the loaded statement) that they be automatics or DSGs.

    MODERATOR

  • crkyolfrtcrkyolfrt Posts: 2,345
    that they be automatics or DSGs.

    I won't go there, but I suspect i know why you probably have that caveat..

    Oh I think you misunderstood my message.

    Ya, I mighta..

    Ya know when you first said that you get a dash light on those upgrade climbs, at first I thought maybe super hot exhaust manifold temps was behind it..

    Have you had any experience with the turbo'd version of your car? If so...would you say the best combo is turbo'd or blown? All things being equal, turbo is freer than a blower..

    I'm guessing that to exploit the supercharged effect best, you short shift, eh?
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 44,780
    I have driven the turbo version of the MINI, and prefer the Supercharger. It's just more "linear", not better necessarily.

    The reason I like turbo diesels with automatic is that it's often a waste of time to rev a diesel up past it's most efficient RPM. Most people don't really understand that, so I think they waste a lot of fuel trying to make a diesel do what it doesn't like doing.

    I would "short shift" a diesel but I bury the needle in the MINI--it seems responsive all the way up.

    Actually I do short shift the MINI--I take that back--in that I often skip all those 6 gears...in city driving I do 1st, 3rd and 5th--that's it.

    MODERATOR

  • ruking1ruking1 Posts: 14,851
    edited April 2013
    ..."The reason I like turbo diesels with automatic is that it's often a waste of time to rev a diesel up past it's most efficient RPM. Most people don't really understand that, so I think they waste a lot of fuel trying to make a diesel do what it doesn't like doing.

    I would "short shift" a diesel but I bury the needle in the MINI--it seems responsive all the way up."...

    Those that know diesels or the differences between most diesels and gassers would probably agree that is one key practical difference between the two. Indeed, I think this is where a lot of "gasser switchers" have WAY too much room for disappointment: expecting one to be/ behave (exactly) like the other, etc.. Then of course those same folks (surprise surprise) are somewhat to VERY disappointed when they are NOT the same. :sick: This difference in effect "TRIGGERS" a whole series of "subtle" and not so subtle different ways of driving. My advice would be to figure out in advance of purchase, the level of satisfaction or lack there of.

    The differences between A/T (slush box 3/4/5/6/7/8/ speed) and DSG's (6/7/8 speed and 5/6/7 speed M/T's are truly another.

    Somewhat off topic, but related : GM has figured out they need to invest in more updated transmissions as covered in the WSJ. Specifically mentioned are 8 speed slush boxes, as built and or licensed by ZF. In 2007, a scant 5 (could be light) years ago? GM sold Allison Transmission to private equity.
  • crkyolfrtcrkyolfrt Posts: 2,345
    edited April 2013
    I could picture the linearity but am a bit surprised about the burying it often. It must be because of it being a relatively small displacement. I remember years ago, chatting with a guy at a cruise night who seemed to know a fair bit about supercharging an engine. The one that he had there that night was a 5.0 Mustang. I remember him saying that he got better sprint times by short shifting. I think it was because so much torque is immediate and practically off idle. Turbos are getting better all the time too now...the use of smaller diameters and of course twin scrolls now all reduce spool up lag times.

    But I can see why autos are popular still with a turbo because the torque convertors allows them to stay on progressive boost between cogs.

    If I were to speculate on what keeps modern day autos from being even more highly regarded than they already are...it is their never ending attempts to make them read your mind. They think they know what you want but of course that fuzzy logic only can go so far...hell..a lot of drivers themselves don't know what they want, so how can any auto tranny derive enough info and process fast enough to actually improve the experience?

    Just recently I was reading about...something...I think it mighta been a 2013 V6 Accord, and the poster said that he couldn't just let off the gas a hair at 40-45 mph and coast it down a bit (picture a slowdown you can see coming up on a freeway congestion..or in town..and you're watching waiting for the light up ahead to go green) without the tranny downshifting a gear! And if I were to speculate why, I'm guessing that the ECU's involved, (after deciding that the driver wanted to slow down more than just 1/2 mph) downshifted the tran because I suspect that in terms of trans wear and tear, it is easier on a trans downshifting into a cog under slight deceleration, than upshifting under pressure/demand of acceleration. So the tran thinks that if it has already chosen that one lower cog, then is ready to give go squarely in that gear if the driver decides to re-accelerate again...typical of the two examples I gave above..traffic starts to flow again..or light turned green.

    The reason they can algorithm a tranny this way these days is cuz they have a lot more ratios to choose from. With a 4 speed, there would be a lot more shock involved if it lowered a cog as sensitive to deceleration under similar circumstances. And of course for accelerating..with the 4 speed it only has so many ratios to pick from so is probably already in that gear to re-accelerate....the variances being taken up in a slipping torque converter.

    While I am not a DCT fan yet, (just too much reliance on artificial devices to get the cog changes done..but if I lose the use of my left leg though, there is better potential for me to be a fan) I believe that for these reasons I describe above they can make cars like a Fiesta still get better mpg with the auto than the stick. They both have 6 speeds, and unlike many examples of an auto vs stick, they both share similar final drive ratios and cog ratios. The difference in economy potential then boils down to the lack of parasitic losses in the DCT during those times between cogs that the 'torque converter' (cuz it isn't one..it's a clutch) isn't allowing any slip (slip being lost fuel economy potential) between those cogs 2 thru 5 in those 2 driving examples above.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 44,780
    Oh I mean full throttle but not necessarily up to redline---you have to keep little engines "on cam" or they fall flat on their little faces. I have a supercharger pulley reduction so there's more boost earlier on.

    MODERATOR

  • crkyolfrtcrkyolfrt Posts: 2,345
    I hear ya..
    Interesting about the pulley reduction mod..makes sense to me.

    So what FE are you getting with the premium dependent little bugger?

    And what is the FE of them when BMW decided best to turbo them instead?
  • gagricegagrice San DiegoPosts: 28,962
    If the USA was really into saving the environment, the EPA would insist we have the greenest vehicles in every class sold in this country. I would put my cash in one of these in a NY second. 1000 miles on a tank full of Diesel is my idea of good range.

    The environmental car ranking, published annually, is based on a dozen criteria, including fuel consumption, pollutant emissions, manufacturing, recycling and the environmental systems of the manufacturer.

    This is the second straight year the ML 250 BlueTec 4Matic has earned the top spot for an SUV, for its energy efficient direct-injection, turbocharged, four-cylinder, 204-horsepower diesel engine. It can accelerate from 0-60 mph in nine seconds and get 40 miles per gallon while emitting just 158 g/km of CO2 (combined). It has a range of just over 1,000 miles.


    http://green.autoblog.com/2012/12/30/mercedes-benz-m-class-b-class-named-most-en- vironmentally-frien/
  • ruking1ruking1 Posts: 14,851
    edited April 2013
    To address your main point, perhaps that is good reasoning why they are BANNED in US markets. :sick: ;) Indeed www.fueleconomy.GOV lists 2012 Prius as posting 183 grams. The Prius, a much less powerful car pollutes 16% MORE.

    ..."1000 miles on a tank full of Diesel is my idea of good range. "...

    This might be WAY TMI, but unless the VW T TDI tank (26.4 gals) is @ 1/4th of a tank or below, I don't even look to take on fuel for that (SOS/DD) 210 miles one way trip at home. Diesel is normally cheaper almost anywhere else than the closest and cheapest diesel station near my house. It is as much as minus- .38 cents cheaper in NV cities, rural NV areas being CHEAPER still (up to minus- .57 cents). If I start with a 1/2 tank (13.2 gal) or more, I can do a R/T without taking on fuel. The flexibility and opportunity cost of only 800 miles is not only cool but up to .38 cents (.57) cheaper per gal can be $10 ($15.) bux cheaper per fill.

    Over (a year's time aka) 15,000 miles, ( US drivers AVG mileage) the costs can be as much as MINUS- $288. CHEAPER.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 44,780
    FE is pretty good even with the pulley reduction of 15%---I get, reliably 26 mpg mixed and 31 mpg highway. It's premium fuel, but the car performs very well for that kind of MPG.

    "They" say that combined mpg with the turbo version is 28, but I can't imagine that unless you drive very conservatively---which is definitely not me. :P

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  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 44,780
    edited April 2013
  • ruking1ruking1 Posts: 14,851
    edited April 2013
    For sure that has been a pipe dream in US markets and for a long time ! ;) It is funny that this new "diesel technology" is coming from Volvo, a car company that is barely holding on !? We also know how innovative China (state/country) owned companies are? :surprise: (get in lock step, or the next destination be the GULAG. Well autumn is coming? Is Autumn here yet?) And we thought Japan was the international COPY expert, decades ago?
  • crkyolfrtcrkyolfrt Posts: 2,345
    In trying to interpret your driving style (and thru previous posts I've gotten what I believe to be a pretty good idea) 26 real world combined does sound quite impressive...especially when you fact the fun quotient. It's too bad about the compulsory premium fuel..otherwise 31 driven fairly aggressively would be great. As it is it's still not too shabby. Premium is such a rip-off though...absolute thievery..so is diesel :(

    So if they rate the turbos at 28 mixed, it sound to me that if it was driven similarly to the way you drive yours, they couldn't match your 26. And that is surprising because the one thing turbos have going for them that blowers don't, is they don't tap engine power reserves to spool.

    I admit I am darn curious to drive a MINI. I have still never tried the new ones. Could you get the AWD with the blower? How many years ago...or rather, what were the years that blowers were used? I think the AWD's came along after only when they had switched to turbos if I recall.
  • crkyolfrtcrkyolfrt Posts: 2,345
    VEA features diesel engines that can monitor and adapt the fuel injection for each individual combustion chamber. It uses pressure feedback from each injector (shown above) instead of the traditional single-pressure sensor. In this way, Volvo says it can cut fuel consumption and increase power. Crabb described the design Òas the second step in the diesel revolution."

    This may sound good at first...but there's something here I'm just not understanding...or maybe I should say, not buying..I find it hard to believe that there could be so much variance in tolerances and operation from one injector to another. And all other ICE aspects being equal, isn't the idea of a well designed/tuned and balanced engine design ensure that all cylinders and pistons do equal work? With today's tech, we basically have smoothed and polished and use deliberate measures to ensure all tracks are sized to length with intake and exhaust manifold design right from the factory...all in the effort to create equal flow both in and out.

    If I'm interpreting what Volvo is trying to say here, is they are suggesting that one piston is/could be actually doing more work than the one beside it, and their electrification tech would help balance the load. What a load of rubbish..someone enlighten me maybe??
  • ruking1ruking1 Posts: 14,851
    edited April 2013
    ..."I find it hard to believe that there could be so much variance in tolerances and operation from one injector to another."...

    This is not to add to, take away, justify, etc. the article, nor offer a criticism to your response: but it is absolutely true there is SO very much variance from one injector to another, IF optimization is the goal. Indeed some of the coating technology is in problem solving application to the "poor US D2 fuel issue", I believe YOU and other have highlighted. So much so that Bosio ( 1927 Italian injector company) is emerging as almost a "go to" aftermarket company for diesel fuel injectors.

    On a more gross or macro level, I can literally "wake up" any to all 3 diesels, just with an injector swap (well 4 actually 6 on the VW T) and calibrations and keep the mpg pretty close to the same, unless I really use (get on) it, the extra torque producing capacity. On two of them, I will be moderately to severely overreaching the transmissions safety zone. This will also probably apply, at that power upgrade to the suspension systems, tires and brakes.

    So for example on a 90 hp/155 # ft of torque 03 TDI, JUST with so called slightly bigger nozzles (PP-520's, aka .184 stock to .205 ), they (stage one) will push hp to 100 hp- 140 hp. Maintaining the same ratios, that will put torque @ 172 # ft -240 # ft. Then as the logic goes, IF I am going to increase the structural output capacity, I might as well chip it to further (again) optimize. This will put a so called "upgrade clutch" to being marginal, AGAIN. In addition to the extra power, as a min, I would need to make 5th gear higher or optimally( again) drop in a 6 speed manual. My goal is 400k Plus miles from the (current) clutch, so I am doing none of the above... SOON anyway.
  • crkyolfrtcrkyolfrt Posts: 2,345
    Interesting. One thing that did occur to me after posting is that one constantly variable parameter that can't be kept even and equal, is air flow from the airbox as air filter starts to collect debris. So in that way I can see potential variance from one injectors firing to the next. But it sounds like regardless of that, that injectors do have a lot of tolerance difference from one to another. Amazing..I never would have thought that would be acceptable in today's modern ICE, especially with so much other emphasis there is on, tip atomization, rail PSI, air control, etc etc etc.

    So it sounds like some interesting tech to follow. That said though, it does seem a bit ironic that a car company who has always had a fair degree of challenges when it comes to down-the-road wiring/electronics longevity/issues, would discover electronics on this level before certain other competitors.
  • ruking1ruking1 Posts: 14,851
    edited April 2013
    Scary to me too !!! :confuse:

    But as you can probably glean, TDI's have a modularity or "Leggo" ness that gassers do not.
  • gagricegagrice San DiegoPosts: 28,962
    I think MB already has a 4 cylinder diesel that makes the V8 gasser a dinosaur. The 2.5 L Bluetec with 369 ft lbs of torque in the heavy ML is capable of running at freeway speeds all day. And likely give the owner close to 40 MPG out on the highway. Will the Gas tax people allow such vehicles into the USA.

    Volvo does have a lot of experience with diesel trucks, heavy equipment and marine engines.
  • ruking1ruking1 Posts: 14,851
    edited April 2013
    It is true that Volvo has been in the ww diesel market segments (bigger trucks markets) to name a few segments, and for a while. link title

    It would appear that Geely sees its future going forward in diesels.
  • tifightertifighter WAPosts: 1,376
    I was looking at the MB USA website and found the GLK 250. First time I've seen the EPA numbers, listed at 24/33. If anyone was curious.
  • scwmcanscwmcan Niagara, CanadaPosts: 394
    So the EPA numbers are a lot lower than the numbers from transport Canada then, I guess that once again shows the EPA tests are quite possibly really not correct for diesels ( too low) while apparently still incorrect for some hybrids and apparently turbo fours ( possibly too high). Oh well it is only another way to make diesels seem less desirable than they really are by the US Gov. Though we will have to see what owners get in the real world to know what the car is really capable of.
  • gagricegagrice San DiegoPosts: 28,962
    The EPA site does not list it yet. I would expect real world mileage to be closer to 30/40. Also interesting that it is still a 2013 model. I am not a fan of the smaller GLK. I would prefer MB to offer the ML250 Bluetec here in the USA. The EU rates the ML250 diesel at 50.4 MPG which is about 42 MPG US. I would prefer that over the V6 Bluetec getting around 30 MPG on the highway.
  • crkyolfrtcrkyolfrt Posts: 2,345
    Oh well it is only another way to make diesels seem less desirable than they really are by the US Gov.

    I sorta know why you say that, but really...when I want to see a more accurate indicator of what a vehicle gets, I check EPA. Annually I get the Cdn guide, but moreso because it has so much other info like reg vs premium gas, who offers a diesel option, # of tran speeds, type of tran, size and config of cyl etc etc. You would think they would have a column showing whether a turbo or not, especially since there are more and more examples where you can't use the octane of fuel used or the greater consumption figures as a clue.

    But hell...they hire anyone now I guess...not only were the guides FOUR months late! (and still doesn't show the newest Mazda6 available or the Jeep GC diesel).. they managed to get it stapled together inside out/ upside down with French covers for English and vise versa..

    Anyway, our guides are wildly optimistic, barely more accurate than they were 10 years ago. And inside, they announce they will finally be adopting 5 cycle testing.."5 cycle testing will be implemented by 2015". :roll eyes: why wait Cda? What's the big deal...get off your butts and do it next year?? Idiots..

    It also says this:

    "CAUTION ON USING U.S. FUEL ECONOMY DATA
    Fuel consumption ratings in Canada (expressed in litres per 100 kms or miles per imperial gallon, differ significantly from fuel economy ratings in the USA. The U.S. fuel economy ratings are based on 5-cycle testing procedures, are listed in miles per U.S. gallon (well DUHHH) and reflect U.S. sales and adjustment factors."

    Idiots... since it isn't rocket science that a 3.785 litre gallon will show fewer mpg than a 4.546 litre gallon, why don't they actually TELL us something we don't know...like... exactly what these sales and adjustment factors are, and why are they any different? And in saying that, I get that a car driven in summer temps year round will probably post better figures than one driven in 8 months of winter, even with A/C use, but what is ridiculous is border towns. In Niagara Falls ON you get the Cdn Guide (optimistic..and wildly in some cases) and across the river a few hundred feet away, sits Buffalo, NY with their EPA guide. Each other's weather and seasons are identical.

    But here is a random example and at least they got it fairly close as per ruking1's results: 2013 VW Touareg 10.8/6.7 (26/42 mpg) They don't do combined anymore because no ones combined is going to be the same anyway. Much better to let the consumer estimate their own percentage and do the math. Someone commuting the 401 in TO, 5 days a week, sure knows that their weekly average doing that is gonna pale in comparison to what they would get doing the 400 NB to the cottage on the w/e...err...well once it opens up and doesn't look like the 401..

    But we know that ruking's most common mpg is 32. Real world. And our guide suggests 42 hwy. EPA says 20/29. So 29 x 20% = 34.8. His 32 x 20% = 38.4. That is getting pretty close to the 42 in our guide. Given his description and the aggression with which his trip is done (pretty aggressive freeway speeds on the upgrade, and assumedly similar but easy miles downgrade) I could easily see getting over 42 on a run into town with his rig here. Speeds never much go over 55 to 60.
  • crkyolfrtcrkyolfrt Posts: 2,345
    That 4 cylinder engine they put in that thing sounds like one impressive mill. Powerful, relatively smooth (it is a MB afterall and their diesels are second to none) and super efficient. What a sensible package. Room, AWD, efficiency, assumedly a good drive and can tow.

    I have been debating how I could rationalize springing for the base base diesel Touareg, but the MB 250 would have plenty of power and be considerably more efficient still. Problem is though, being a MB, it'll probably not be much fewer $ than the V6 VW T..
  • scwmcanscwmcan Niagara, CanadaPosts: 394
    The thing is the EPA numbers do seem to be generally too low to diesels and too high for hybrids and apparentlt turbo gas engines as well. I think they are much more accurate than our numbers for normal gas engines though, the problem is in the calculations, I be
    I'd've our numbers are closer to the numbers used for the US CAFE calculations, and yes for normal gas engines are widely optimistic ( though on most of my cars I have managed to beat even our numbers without too much effort). My diesel smart easily meets or exceeds the transport Canada numbers and I do not even try, just drive it normally with the flow of traffic, so I think for diesels they are much closer as you pointed out for Rucking's touareg. my matrix on the other hand is very difficult if not impossible to get the transport Canada numbers for ( I'll have to actually drive it slow to see how I do, but unlike the Mazda3 I used to own and managed to beat the transport Canada numbers with, just by driving no faster than 110 km/hr, the Matrix seems like it will be a bit harder.
  • scwmcanscwmcan Niagara, CanadaPosts: 394
    I haven't looked at the price of the VW in Canada, as I posted somewhere above the diesel GLK is aprox $45,000 up here ( don't rember the exact price) which as I recall was $1600 less than the V6 gas version, The touareg starts at about $50,000, but I don't know if that is for the gas version on not, and don't know how equipment levels compare ( the VW site uses flash, and since I am using my IPad right now I can't look at more than the first page). I suspect that comparably equipped it look the the VW would be at least a few thousand more ( as maybe it should be as it is a larger C/SUV).
  • gagricegagrice San DiegoPosts: 28,962
    Went to the big Jeep dealer yesterday for information. They will start taking orders for the JGC diesel next month. While there I checked out the 2013 Overland Summit gas model. They have some really nice saddle brown leather seats in the top of the line Summit. Some question if the 2014 will have those Napa leather seats. Very comfy and good back seat legroom. Nice vehicle. They really load the Summit to the max and still beat the ML by about $15k.
  • ruking1ruking1 Posts: 14,851
    edited April 2013
    Really guys, I can't wait to hear peoples' take on the new JGC TDI !!!

    I was off internet due to structural interior massive cabling signal failure and subsequent re configuration (upgrade). Advertised speeds are now being met. Glad to be back, albeit FAR faster now.
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