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August 02, 2021   |  


It's not over for diesels just yet


Richard Truett has it right that the number of diesel choices is declining, but it's not last call just yet ("The diesel engine is an endangered species — again," autonews.com, July 20). Much remains to be sorted out on future fuels and new technologies. There are still legions of diesel fans out there — and big sectors of the service and performance industry that support them.

The lure of the diesel has always been something bigger than just the numbers for performance, torque and towing. Which explains in part why consumers will and do pay more for a diesel and that they are still buying them, even as more and more fuel-efficient choices emerge.

It's a passion; a passion about strength and capability, something that embodies the ability to do more if asked, to not get in a bind, to be able to step up and pull harder or go longer or faster, to just do something the "average" might not be able to do. And even as fuel economy and emissions requirements tighten, manufacturers have succeeded in meeting the challenge and are pretty good at maintaining that mystique.

Pickups and large SUVs still seem to be both quite popular with consumers and profitable for manufacturers. You can draw your own conclusions about why diesel is still around with offerings just in this segment, but you might say it is where it was meant to be all along.

ALLEN SCHAEFFER, Executive director, Diesel Technology Forum, Frederick, Md. Diesel Technology Forum is a not-for-profit trade association representing diesel engine, vehicle and equipment makers, suppliers and fuel refiners.

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