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America’s diesel industry – represented by the Diesel Technology Forum – says that a new version of an annual government report highlights the potential for clean diesel to help meet the nation’s growing energy and environmental demands. In their 2005 Fuel Economy Guide, released today, the US Department of Energy (DOE) and Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) find that four vehicles in the top ten Fuel Economy Leaders are diesel-powered.

The Volkswagen New Beetle, Golf, Jetta and Jetta Wagon diesel models are the vehicles included in the rankings.

“This annual report highlights the near-term energy saving benefits of more clean diesel cars, pick-ups and SUVs in the US,” said Allen Schaeffer, executive director of the Diesel Technology Forum. “These rankings underscore the role advanced diesel technology could play in improving U.S. fuel economy and energy security.”

The Forum also said that a recent DOE study forecast a tremendous increase in diesel-powered cars, pick-ups and SUVs, estimating that diesels could command four to seven percent of the U.S. market by 2012. Diesel currently makes up less than one percent of U.S. passenger vehicles.

Gradually increasing Americans’ use of currently available clean diesel technologies to levels seen today in Europe would reduce net crude oil imports by 350,000 barrels per day by 2020, according to the DOE.

“This year, consumers have more choices than ever before, with four new diesel vehicle models coming to the U.S. market,” noted Schaeffer. “Along with the proven acceptance and sustained growth to a 75 percent market share for diesel engines in larger pick-up trucks, the American auto market is poised to fully embrace more models of advanced clean diesel technology.”

The Diesel Technology Forum represents engine makers, fuel producers and emissions control manufacturers. It brings together the diesel industry, the broad diesel user community, civic and public interest leaders, government regulators, academics, scientists, the petroleum industry, and public health researchers, to encourage the exchange of information, ideas, scientific findings, and points-of-view to current and future uses of diesel power technology.

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