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Diesel MiniVans



  • dpughdpugh Posts: 14
    the average price for 1 gallon (US) is currently $5.24. And that is for Diesel, gasoline is 60 cents per gallon (US) more expensive!! I dream of $3 per gallon fuel prices. Taxes amount to 73cents per litre, and guess what, joe public just accepts it!!! At least Dick Turpin (English Highwayman/robber) wore a mask when he was out stealing. The governments over here don't even bother with that!!!!!! Anybody wants to move to germany????? bring a bike. regards :cry:
  • nwngnwng Posts: 664
    thanks for posting one my life-long dreams. I'd like to do a cross US trip in one of these.

    However, my dreams are shattered every month with the arrival of my mortgage statement, plus it's also destroyed daily by the noise of two girls bickering at each other. :cry:

    Can you also post a picture looking in the van from the driver's seat? :D
  • gagricegagrice San DiegoPosts: 28,846
    That was my plan. I just don't seem to have the time. Taking care of 5 acres of citrus and tropical plants keeps us home more than I like. Here is a shot to the back of the RV. Hope you make it one of these days. It would be about the most economical way to cross the country.

    PS: they girls will be gone before you know it.

  • marcbmarcb Posts: 152
    Rephrased from a competing auto site:

    VWoA has a tease on its coming joint venture with DaimlerChrysler of a modern version of the icon Microbus. It is hinting it will be coming by 2008. The tease is a restored 1964 Microbus carted to various media events and trade shows.

    Man...if it becomes true, hope a TDI version is offered with 40+ mpg. Hope it also would come with an affordable price tag seeing it will be built by Chrysler in NA.

    Gotta hold on to my 2000 MPV for another 3 to 4 years and start putting away some money. ;)
  • eliaselias Posts: 1,898
    R class is a diesel minivan , isn't it? discuss?
  • yabunyabun Posts: 2
    The issue with me is that there are NO reasonable options in the US for a decent diesel minivan. The options are almost as bad as our options for electric cars. People with an interest in diesels either want better efficiency or the option to go biodiesel. Both are admirable reasons. So what to do we have now?
    Dodge Sprinter - this one has been discussed and dismissed for being "fugly". Yeah, kinda. We'd like to take this industrial van and make a family hauler out of it. I could convince my wife to look beyond the "fugly" (especially if it had a Mercedes nameplate on the back instead of Dodge), but it looks like it only has a passenger-side rear sliding door. Compared to the Odyssey's and Siena's, this is a deal breaker. The PHEV/diesel version could trump all that, though.
    The R-class diesel - NICE!! For something that size, I'd like a little better mpg. But it's pricey. I'd have to be pretty well off to be ok putting >B10 in a $44k Benz.
    The Jeep Liberty - wrong category.

    Ideally, I want a Mazda5 diesel or a VW Touran to be sold at dealers in the US. I want 3 rows of seats (with the 3rd row removable/stowable), 2 sliding back doors, good diesel economy (>38mpg) with the Biodiesel option. Why is that so hard. Our options for this in the US are non-existent. That's frustrating and it sucks. Our options for electric cars are non-existent, but that's a story for another town-hall. I don't tow a boat or trailer, I don't go off-road, I'm not a contractor, I don't need or want an SUV but we have a crap load of those.

    ... I can't help but assume a lot of you feel my pain.

    Is it possible to legally import a Mazda5 or Touran from Europe?? Has it been done? Can't be from England, driver's on the wrong side.

    And another 2 cents... other non-van diesel options I'd like in the US are the Dodge Caliber and the SmartCar. Canada has 'em. Thank you.
  • dpughdpugh Posts: 14
    I have a 2006 (previous version) Kia Sedona, 2.9ltr Diesel Minivan. I get 32-39 mpg (US)...It runs on Ultra Low Sulphur Diesel which is the standard in Europe and also now available in the US. Since this car comes off the same production line as models destined for the US, there is no reason other than politics to prevent this model from being imported to the US.... I have looked into bringing the vehicle back to the US in two years, however the chances are roughly zero......... oh well.
  • marcbmarcb Posts: 152
    Yabun, I am exactly in the same boat as you. I use to want a Smart back when they were not yet available here in Canada. That was until we had kids.

    Then I thought I wanted Touran for a long time, even signed up an online petition several years ago. I’ve also scoped out a Mazda5 just in case Mazda decides to introduce a diesel version in the future.

    But even at 5’9” thin as a rail asian immigrant, I cannot fit myself in a Mazda5 3rd row seat. Maybe Tourans are packaged better but unless I see one I won’t sign for one anymore (if ever they even become available).

    My point is the primary reason I look into small cars is fuel efficiency, ideally at more than 40mpg combined. Size can be sacrificed and is even somewhat chic. But only if there is:

    1) a corresponding increase in mpg, 2) interior space efficiently utilized to maintain practical use, 3) price is kept reasonably low, 4) safety is not overly compromised.

    When it doesn't there just isn’t any point, specially when we risk the lives and safety of our loved ones.

    Hence I also gave up on the Honda Fit (good space, safety is addressed, ho-hum mpg), and all other tiny cars out there for now.

    My best hope is that car manufacturers finally see the light and start providing diesel engines in the not so large minivans to provide us with the fuel efficiency we want.

    Just in case you haven’t yet, check out the (possible) future 2010 Chrysler minivan with the (possible) 2.2. Benz diesel engine:

    As for other non minivan tiny cars, its too bad SmartFor4 was pulled out when it would have been the model to pull that brand out of the red.

    Hopefully the Chevy Volt will be built. Yes I also signed the petition for that one here: .0.1.1&seo=goo_volt
  • yabunyabun Posts: 2
    Sounds like 2009 or 2010 will be the years for real choices. Hmmm... 3 years.

    I agree. 3rd row seats are just a much wanted convenience not really intended for frequent adult use. Most likely only be used by the kids when we have the occasional extra kid, friend, or in-law.

    The Volt came out of no where and the concept is awesome. I followed your link and voted. Not sure it'll do any good, but I voted. The only issue I had when I first saw the Volt is the styling. It looks like a muscle car. It has an efficient drive train, but it looks heavy (like a Dodge Charger). Feels contradictory.
  • marcbmarcb Posts: 152
    the volt panels are made of special plastics, so shouldn't be too heavy thought. But see, cars same as minivans it doesn't matter anymore whether they are huge or small as long as they are efficient fuel wise.

    I have a 13 year old heavy Jetta diesel that still gets 44mpg combined. Not even the new small Yaris and Fit gets that mpg. So size/weight is secondary only to engine efficiency. My ex 2001 Prius got only 5mpg better and was too complex and costly to fix.

    I would get a Volt primarily for efficiency, secondarily for lesser maintenance, and lastly for smaller carbon footprint.

    Back on topic, it is too bad VW's new CEO just pulled out the plug on a planned mild hybrid Touran for 2008.

    Think of it, why would VW build a hybrid Touran when a TDI would be cheaper and readily available in Europe?

    My suspicion is it was supposed to be targetted for North America.

    Still a 2010 Chrysler Minivan with a 2.2 Benz diesel, rotating middle seats, and removable table would be something to look forward to.
  • What VW should have done is put the TDI in the eurovan with a manual tranny. Also we need a small TDI engine 1 liter size that gets 75 mpg estimated by me. The problem in america is that car drivers dont want to work to drive they just want an automatic and be lazy fat slobs. Right now I have a Toyota Previa 1995 & Chevy Cavalier 2000 The water pump on the cavalier is put on with a cheap thin gasket. The toyota uses o-rings. Which do you think is the better seal . Gas is 2.77 per gallon 87 octane cost $44.50 to fill up my van 2 days ago. I want to get a VW TDI diesel and wish my Previa van was Diesel and manual. I drove a beater 300D 1985 Mercedes diesel that was an awsome engine sounded like a hot rod. Well eventually I will replace all my cars with Diesel=economy+reliability. :shades:
  • marcbmarcb Posts: 152

    "There've been rumors that VWAG might kill another vehicle on its production plans - an all-new, American-style minivan. There are all sorts of reasons why the project should be in jeopardy, conceded Hallmark. For one thing, it is being developed in a joint venture with Chrysler, the U.S. marque that parent DaimlerChrysler is likely to sell off."

    "Then there's the fact that the minivan was conceived by ousted VWAG brand boss Wolfgang Bernhard. But after looking long and hard at the project, corporate officials realized it was too good a product to abandon, whoever got credit. It will reach showrooms late next year, about twelve months after Chrysler launches its own, next-generation minivan."

  • Hi all... found this board and read some but have to get back to work. We have a diesel pickup truck but that's all so far. I had to replace my front wheel drive Astro van last year, a bit suddenly, and got the Chevy Uplander. I am not happy with it but there just wasn't much out there (full disclosure: hubby wants GM). Even would he relent... the US is just not cooperating with itself to allow a good market for such a useful vehicle as a roomy diesel minivan with reasonable power. And it's not like it can't be done. I look forward to catching up on this forum and learning what's on the horizon.
  • blufz1blufz1 Posts: 2,045
    Odyssey diesel minivan by 2009 at the latest. start workin' on him. :)
  • Thanks for the link on the Volt. I was starting to think that GM was completely out of the running, which would be bad news for me. The Volt is just a wee little thing, but it is a start. Now, why can't they put a mini Duramax diesel on the S10 platform? The S10 proved its likeability years ago, and many people were sad to see it go... my Astro was on that platform too. If the Duramax can get 24 mpg as a big old crewcab truck, they should be able to make one in the family size, with an eye towards a flexfuel future. I'm not so sure about electric... I'm nervous of anything that plugs in, because that feeds the whole coal-power-plant idiocy that we also have in this country. Doesn't it? :confuse:
  • Don't even get me started about the lack of stick-shift cars in this country! :mad:
  • dudleyrdudleyr Posts: 3,426
    Stick shift diesel minivan - yessssss!
  • marcbmarcb Posts: 152
    Hi lizziewriter, sorry but this board kind of moves really s-l-o-w just like diesel minivan news, which comes just way too far in between.

    I don’t normally come here that often anymore.

    Not sure what’s the latest on Honda’s plan to offer diesel in light SUV’s (possibly includes the Ody. Anybody care to share info?).

    The Koreans are also thinking of doing same – offering diesels on light SUV’s, so who knows we might have a Kia diesel also.

    The bad news is Daimler dumped Chrysler, so that probably eliminates the 2010 Chrysler with nice rotating chairs nada.

    So only a Chrysler based VW diesel seems definite right now. The good news is VW’s diesel engines have gained/regained the efficiency they lost sometime after 2003. Who knows they might even give us a manual, after all what good is a diesel if an auto tranny simple saps it down to a gassers level? So, one of those omniscient pre-selective double clutch thingy would be waaaaayyyy nice VWAG(…..pweeease?). And since it’s N.A. built, keep the price competitive too, double pweease?

    On the tiny cars, there’s lots of promise. From Mazda2’s to Honda hybrid that’s tinier than the Fit, future Mini’s with hopefully diesel that gets 60mpg (there’s increasing clamor to bring that to the U.S. now).

    Toyota is also thinking of making a smaller version of the Toyota Prius (bad news from Toyota is they are not going to use Li-Ion batteries for the next version).

    Still a Volt (with diesel engine pweaase) would be the best. So much less moving parts means long term reliability. This is when car brand will no longer be a reliability indicator. Then only price matters.

    Since north American built will mean cheaper parts, I relish the thought that this will be when American cars kicks butt…..ta da, Empire Strikes Back!

    Btw, it’s probably easier to regulate/improve pollution per power plant than per millions of individual cars out there. Whether its carbon capture and storage, or molecular/chemical breakdown to different useful forms, or whatever, power plants would be the best place to catch them.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    Well, if you're unhappy about having a gas engine, this might make you feel a little better.

    I just applied for one of those Shell gas cards, and in reading the fine print I found out you can't get the 5% rebate for diesel purchases.

    Prices fluctuate, sure, but right now, around me, diesel costs about the same as regular gas, both around $3 per gallon.

    The card's 5% rebate makes gas $2.85, diesel still $3.

    That might ease the wait a little bit. ;)
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