A recent J.D. Power and Associates report found that conventional
gasoline engines will remain dominant in the U.S. market in the near
future, but hybrids and diesels are steadily gaining market share,
especially as gas prices and concerns about global warming rise and
technology advances. In addition, the report predicts that hybrids and
diesels will reach 9 percent of U.S. auto sales by 2009.
“As gas prices rise, diesels seem a natural solution for the
United States, especially for manufacturers with large operations in
Europe, where diesel cars are already in large demand,” said a spokeman
at J.D. Power and Associates Automotive Forecasting. “For these
carmakers, diesels provide a far more economical means than hybrids of
improving Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) numbers. A vehicle with a
modern diesel engine will have 30 percent better fuel economy than a
comparable gasoline engine. Plus, advances have made modern diesel
engines perform similar to gasoline engines in terms of noise,
filtration systems and drive quality,” he said.