GM, Fiat Settle with GM Retaining Diesel Rights
Mercedes Benz B-Class Compact Enters Production

Cadillac to Preview First Diesel


GM’s Cadillac brand will preview its first turbo diesel model in the form of a premium mid-class model at the upcoming Geneva Motor Show.  The new Cadillac BLS is designed for the European and other global markets.

(As noted in the comment section below, Cadillac last tried a diesel (non-turbo) in 1978, with an early form of cylinder deactivation.)

The turbo diesel is an advanced 1.9-liter four-cylinder unit with common-rail direct injection technology featuring a maintenance-free diesel particulate filter that will comply with Euro 4 emission standards. Two gasoline versions will be available: a 2.0-liter four cylinder and a 2.8-liter six-cylinder.

The diesel sounds like the 1.9-liter engine used in the new SAAB 1.9 TiD (earlier post)—a diesel developed by the GM-Fiat Powertrain joint venture that just was ended. (Earlier post)

No word yet on the fuel consumption or performance, but the two diesel SAAB models average 40 mpg.


Mr. E. Codiesel


Paul Henriques

The BLS is not the first Cadillac to have a diesel engine, as the 1978 Seville was available with a diesel V8.


I did not know that! Thanks for the correction. Do you have any details about the diesel?

Paul Henriques

The diesel engine offered for 1978 was announced at the Chicago Auto Show that year, being built by Oldsmobile. The option code for the diesel was "N" V8-350 diesel. These 350 cubic inch V8 diesels were converted gas engines and were extremely unreliable, much the same as the V8-6-4 engine in the Seville around the same time period. In theory, this particular engine was supposed to switch from eight to six to four cylinders depending on driving conditions. However, issues with stalling and hesitation plagued this engine. Many people simply cut two wires in the system to deactivate this feature.


I would like to take an efficient turbo diesel, such as this, convert it to biodiesel. I was also wandering if a hybrid diesel would be feasible? please email me at [email protected]

Dale Cramer

As a former owner of two of the 350 Oldsmobile Diesel engines, one in an Olds and one in a Cadillac. The engine was a great engine, and could easily make 35 MPG. The only problem was the head gaskets would blow as they only had 10 weak bolts holding the heads on. If very hard head bolts were installed, the problem went away. And no the engine was not a modified gasoline engine. The block was designed for diesel and was definately much more heavy duty than the regular 350 gasoline engine.


Sounds like heaven to me.. The best of all worlds, a Cadillac with a diesel that should have no problem converting to biodiesel....


As Dale said, the Oldsmobile diesel engines used in the late 70's were not converted gas engines and the problem was not with the head bolts or any other features on the engine. The true problem was the fuel system. In the 70's (and even now) this country was using some of the crummiest diesel fuel around. It had all sorts of contaminates in it such as water. What would happen is water would destroy the fuel pump and eventually get into the cylinders. Unlike gases, liquids can't be compressed so either the pistons would lock up, the head gasket would go, the headbolts would break, or the crankshaft would break causing catastrophic engine failure.

Audie Price

Great that the CTS will now have an efficient common-rail diesel. When will it be available in CA?

Re comments about biodiesel - get real, or do you want a fuel that has a real cost of about $7/gallon?


$7/gallon for bio? Are you crazy? I have a friend that makes bio for his Mercedes and it costs him about $1.24/gallon including the machine. Once the Machine is paid for it'll cost him less than $.80 to make.

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