Despite scaremongering headlines and negative reports, there is still a viable role for diesel-engine cars when it comes to assessing car purchase options.
Like anything in life it’s ‘horses for courses’, and for the drivers of the 10 million diesel cars on Britain’s roads, the combination of outstanding fuel efficiency, improved emission technology and higher resale values, makes choosing diesel a shrewd choice.
The growth in diesel popularity over the past decade or so was a direct result of successive Governments championing their benefits, particularly around fuel economy and lower CO2 emissions when compared with petrol equivalents. Helped by a lenient road and company car tax regime, drivers opted in great numbers for diesels and sales soared.
In recent times, efforts to demonise diesels from pressure groups and some politicians has potentially tainted the reputation of diesel vehicles, but for many the diesel-engine car has lots going for it. We’ve listed a few of the reasons below.
Fuel efficiency and performance
With fuel prices again on the rise, the cost of running a car will remain an important budgeting factor for many consumers. One of the strongest selling points offered by diesels is their well-proven fuel economy that leaves petrol cars in their wake as they deliver more miles to the gallon.
If you are a high mileage driver – anything above 12,000 miles per annum - and frequently drive long distances, the associated fuel costs will be far more advantageous in a diesel.
This is because of the higher energy density of the fuel and the way the energy is released during combustion. Add in modern fuel injection and turbocharger technology specified in new cars, which today offer the power and smooth-running performance that older diesels models lacked, and it is clear why, for some, diesels retain their popularity.
Likewise, if you tow heavy loads such as a caravan or trailer then diesels offer superior performance levels that will pay off over time in fuel savings.
Emissions and standards
With today’s continued focus on climate change and potential environmental damage, all car manufacturers are working hard to ensure their vehicles comply with the latest thinking. The Government has also reacted by adding a surcharge to the cost of new diesels as of April 2018 and changing road tax banding to ensure that the owners of new petrol and diesel cars will pay the same rate going forward.
While diesels produce 20 per cent less CO2 than petrol vehicles, they do also produce tiny particles. However, consumer concerns can also be alleviated by the fact that since September 2015, all new diesel-engine cars have to comply with the latest Euro 6 regulations and are now the cleanest in history.
Contradicting what is often reported in the press, these new models are considerably less damaging to people’s health as they are fitted with diesel particulate filters which convert most of the NOX produced from the engine into harmless nitrogen and water. Experts predict that we can expect to see Euro 7 and Euro 8 laws in future years. This continuing clamp down on pollutants will raise emission standards even further and allow the diesel car purchaser to buy with renewed confidence.
Cost and depreciation
Whilst diesel cars will typically cost more to buy than a petrol version, the real gains can be made over the long term.
Statistics demonstrate that diesels tend to hold their residual value better and can result in a higher resale value to the owner. This can be an important factor when it comes to the financial impact of swapping for a new vehicle. It is also worth remembering that many manufacturers offer discounts and deals on new diesel models.
Reports of the demise of diesel vehicles are exaggerated and they are set to remain an important part of the motoring mix for consumers. They are not ideally suited to everyone and those considering opting for the diesel route should carefully evaluate whether it is right for them.
However, for drivers who do a reasonable level of miles and are looking for a fuel efficient, reliable and high performing car that offers great resale value, then diesel vehicles remain a viable and sensible motoring choice.
Here at GO Vauxhall, we offer a wide range of diesel cars that are available to be driven away today. For more information or to find out about the range of fantastic offers available, get in touch with our expert team, here.