To the Editor:
Keith Crain's excellent column, "Let's quit stalling on diesels" (July 17), made a number of compelling arguments in favor of greater U.S. market penetration for diesel cars, pickups and SUVs. Chief among them is the fact that diesel engines achieve greater fuel economy than gasoline engines.
Crain asks why we can't seem to make diesels work in the United States. Fortunately, that equation is about to change dramatically, benefiting both consumers and the environment.
On Oct. 15, ultralow-sulfur diesel fuel will be introduced across the country. Although many of the benefits will first be enjoyed by the heavy-duty diesel segment, the new fuel also will open the door for a new generation of ultraclean diesel passenger vehicles in the United States.
Many automakers are seriously considering offering new, clean diesel cars, pickups and SUVs during the next several model years, featuring the most cutting-edge emission control technology ever. The new fuel makes that possible.
Given the long-term prospect of higher gasoline prices, we hope consumers will embrace the new generation of diesels, both for their fuel economy and their environmental benefits.