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Clean Diesels on Capitol Hill

Car Buyer’s Notebook reports on last week’s Meet Clean Diesel event organized by the Diesel Technology Forum.

The event was sponsored by Senator Carl Levin (D-MI) and Senator George Voinovich (R-OH), and allowed government officials, media and consumers to test drive 10 diesel vehicles, including the Mercedes E320, the Volkswagen Passat, the Jeep Liberty CRD, and the Ford Chrysler Voyager among others.

“Today’s really the perfect storm for diesel,” said [Allen] Schaeffer [executive director of the Diesel Technology Forum], who organized the event to showcase the benefits of diesel-powered vehicles from eight different automakers.

“We’ve got the President talking about and calling for tax incentives for diesels—putting them on a par with other advanced technologies like hybrids—we’ve got the House just passed an energy bill that includes tax credits for diesel and today we’re showing the most advanced clean diesel technology that’s available here in the US and what Europeans are experiencing,“ Schaeffer said.

The number of light and medium-duty diesel passenger vehicles registered in the US grew 56% from 2000 through 2004, from 301,741 to 468,990. That represents an increase in marketshare of 1.14 percentage points, from 2.25% in 2000 to 3.37% in 2004, according to research done by Polk Automotive for the Diesel Technology Forum. (Earlier post)


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