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Old 02-15-2011, 10:24 AM   #1
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Default Car Magazine Undertakes Epic US Road Trip In Golf Bluemotion



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February 15, 2011: The Golf BlueMotion is one of the most efficient and low CO2 emitting cars currently on sale in Europe. To test just how efficient, CAR Magazine recently embarked on a unique road trip, taking the Golf BlueMotion out of its normal environment. A right-hand drive Golf BlueMotion was shipped to Miami, Florida where it was joined by CAR Magazine’s Assistant Editor, Chris Chilton, and photographer and occasional navigator Greg Pajo. The pair then set out to cross America from Miami to Los Angeles driving entirely normally, discovering en route how a European diesel hatchback would cope in a country where petrol is king and diesel-powered cars (as well as fuel pumps dispensing diesel…) remain a rarity.

The epic trip lasted ten days, crossed seven states and took in a total of 3,144 miles on a mix of interstates and winding back roads as well as occasional jaunts into thick urban traffic. Along the way they survived brushes with curious traffic cops and snakes (fortunately not at the same time) and battled fatigue as they sought to hit a deadline to meet Governor Schwarzenegger in California.

On arriving in Los Angeles the Golf BlueMotion was found to have consumed just £120 of diesel in the course of the trip – equating to driving from Edinburgh to Rome and back again.

On returning, Chris Chilton commented: ‘I don’t think anyone is going to be signing us up for those crazy hypermiler competitions, but what we did prove is that even if you make no concessions to economical driving other than obeying the speed limit, the Golf BlueMotion could still save you a fortune at the pumps.’

To read the full story, take a look at the March edition of CAR Magazine which is on sale tomorrow.
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Old 02-15-2011, 12:27 PM   #2
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Why only VW has even tried mainstream priced diesels in the US remains a mystery to me; is there some kind of arrangement all the other manufacturers have among themselves to not make their cars available?

The new Passat diesel claims 800 miles to the tank; I've love to try it on my Chicago to Denver run. The Subaru needs refueling three times on the average trip.
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Old 02-15-2011, 12:34 PM   #3
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Well all clean diesel technology funding from our government is halted according to the new proposed budget. It is this lack of support that would stifle any automakers into venturing into this market. The white house butt clowns are intent on forcing electric car and ONLY electric cars onto us. The inconvenient truth is Diesels offer a far better improvement for the foreseeable future
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Old 02-15-2011, 12:44 PM   #4
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Please forward this article to the White House press corps.

Full disclosure: for the last month I've been trying to convince myself that replacing my FXT with a CPO 08-09 E320 Bluetec would make sense. Not sure that I have, however.
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Old 02-15-2011, 12:48 PM   #5
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Well all clean diesel technology funding from our government is halted according to the new proposed budget. It is this lack of support that would stifle any automakers into venturing into this market. The white house butt clowns are intent on forcing electric car and ONLY electric cars onto us. The inconvenient truth is Diesels offer a far better improvement for the foreseeable future
this is what happens when you have an industrial policy where the government picks winners
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Old 02-15-2011, 01:56 PM   #6
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Diesel cars never seem to sell good in the US thats why other companies don't want to jump into a segment that has always failed to sell well.
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Old 02-15-2011, 02:36 PM   #7
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Why not give 7500 dollars incentive on them, like they do no the GM failboat Volt. That would help.
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Old 02-15-2011, 02:50 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by SCRAPPYDO View Post
Why not give 7500 dollars incentive on them, like they do no the GM failboat Volt. That would help.
Why not give 7500 dollars incentive on every car that can get over 30mpg average? I would love new Elantra for less than $10k.
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Old 02-15-2011, 03:06 PM   #9
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Forget MPG, the drive above works out to 16.25 miles per DOLLAR at current exchange rates. That is unreal, especially in mixed driving conditions...just imagine if diesel was cheaper.

-Mike.
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Old 02-15-2011, 06:25 PM   #10
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I'll take a diesel please. As long as it's of Japanese manufacture, I'm not really interested in getting an unreliable European car...
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Old 02-15-2011, 06:59 PM   #11
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Japanese don't diesel.
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Old 02-15-2011, 07:14 PM   #12
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Well all clean diesel technology funding from our government is halted according to the new proposed budget. It is this lack of support that would stifle any automakers into venturing into this market. The white house butt clowns are intent on forcing electric car and ONLY electric cars onto us. The inconvenient truth is Diesels offer a far better improvement for the foreseeable future
You're spouting hot air here. From that other thread, which you apparently didn't read carefully what with all this steam circling your head:

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The current clean-diesel spending plan was signed into law in January and pays local governments to retrofit buses, trucks and construction equipment.
Relation to VWAG consumer diesel offerings? ZILCH.
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Old 02-15-2011, 07:23 PM   #13
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This was 'epic'? long sure...but shouldn't epic involve some kind of jerry bruckheimer ish?

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I'll take a diesel please. As long as it's of Japanese manufacture, I'm not really interested in getting an unreliable European car...
Oh of course, because NOBODY in europe builds a decent diesel and NOBODY in japan has ever built a lemon...
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Old 02-15-2011, 07:53 PM   #14
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US fuel taxes are high on diesel (to tax truckers)

Until recently, US diesel was crappy compared to EU, so the motors would need big changes.

Fuel costs have only recently put any emphasis on MPG.

Companies have only imported odd diesels that come with autos as well as manuals.
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Old 02-15-2011, 09:24 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by SCRAPPYDO View Post
Well all clean diesel technology funding from our government is halted according to the new proposed budget. It is this lack of support that would stifle any automakers into venturing into this market. The white house butt clowns are intent on forcing electric car and ONLY electric cars onto us. The inconvenient truth is Diesels offer a far better improvement for the foreseeable future
The 'clean diesel' funding that was cut will have zero impact on being able to buy a clean diesel car. What they cut was grant money for local governments to retrofit buses, trucks and construction equipment. I don't necessarily agree with it either, but it really has no impact on the sales of clean diesel cars.

http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2011-0...cell-plan.html

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Old 02-15-2011, 09:25 PM   #16
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Originally Posted by arghx7 View Post
this is what happens when you have an industrial policy where the government picks winners
It's quite a dilemma. In a perfect world, government wouldn't pick any winners, it would just ensure fair competition. We should have more than 3 American car manufacturers. In the era of massive global corporations, we just can't get any progress without government forcing the issue. We don't have anything close to free markets, they are carefully controlled by powerful corporations through the government. Money drives everything and the only progress worth making is growth.

Sustainability and reliability are carefully balanced to maximize profit. Safety, efficiency, eco-friendliness only enter the equation because government forces the issue.

Anyway, there was a tax break for clean diesels for a while. It went away after X-amount of cars were sold. It's pretty much the exact same thing as the hybrid incentive a few years back, that went away too. No need to blow a gasket. The only thing holding VW back from selling a boatload of diesel cars is their reliability record, not the lack of incentives.
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Old 02-15-2011, 09:50 PM   #17
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Originally Posted by Yotsuya View Post
Why only VW has even tried mainstream priced diesels in the US remains a mystery to me; is there some kind of arrangement all the other manufacturers have among themselves to not make their cars available?
Because they are the only European maker of economy cars that also sells a lot of cars in the US. European companies already have the engines, so its not a huge deal to also sell them here. I just wish Subaru would bring its diesel to the US
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Old 02-15-2011, 11:10 PM   #18
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diesels are awesome. Obama administrations are wrong for cutting diesel incentives..
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Old 02-16-2011, 12:14 AM   #19
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Originally Posted by industrial View Post
It's quite a dilemma. In a perfect world, government wouldn't pick any winners, it would just ensure fair competition. We should have more than 3 American car manufacturers. In the era of massive global corporations, we just can't get any progress without government forcing the issue. We don't have anything close to free markets, they are carefully controlled by powerful corporations through the government. Money drives everything and the only progress worth making is growth.

Sustainability and reliability are carefully balanced to maximize profit. Safety, efficiency, eco-friendliness only enter the equation because government forces the issue. [...]
I agree 100%. It's because European governments intervened 10~15 years ago that European manufacturers were forced to work on efficient Diesel engines in the first place. It took 10~15 years to get to the level of Diesel technology that we're seeing now (in both specific power output and fuel efficiency). If we had left thing to the "free market forces", I'm pretty sure we wouldn't be where we are now.
So, some may or may not like government intervention, but we have to recognize that it delivers pretty good thing once in a while.
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Old 02-16-2011, 12:25 AM   #20
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Because they are the only European maker of economy cars that also sells a lot of cars in the US. European companies already have the engines, so its not a huge deal to also sell them here. I just wish Subaru would bring its diesel to the US
Ford and GM have access to small diesel engines from european market, but for some reason they chose not to bring them here. Same with BMW, they won't bring 4 cylinder.
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Old 02-16-2011, 03:56 AM   #21
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diesels are awesome. Obama administrations are wrong for cutting diesel incentives..
Geez, how many administrations does that guy have anyway...?
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Old 02-16-2011, 08:34 AM   #22
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You're spouting hot air here. From that other thread, which you apparently didn't read carefully what with all this steam circling your head:



Relation to VWAG consumer diesel offerings? ZILCH.
Roll your eyes all you want, but he did not have to directly impact VW for his message to be sent. He is picking his winner. As if he knew a shred about what was best for us. He is pushing an agenda on the free market. In some ways all presidents do this. But this particular president has proven amazingly inept at producing garbage legislation. The Health care bill is crap, his NASA plan is a total joke and slap in the face to us (I am personally biased here, but none the less it is true), his bailout policy was BS (as was GWB's).

It is okay to have a leader that is clueless as long as he knows that and he surrounds himself with smart people. It is far more dangerous to have a clueless leader that thinks he is smart.

If he is going to force draconian CAFE standards on us, at least let the market pick the winner.

Do what others have said. Spread out the incentives to ANY car getting X mpg figures. Do not cherry pick electrics and hybrids. In almost every way, a good diesel would win.
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Old 02-16-2011, 01:20 PM   #23
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Originally Posted by SCRAPPYDO View Post
Roll your eyes all you want, but he did not have to directly impact VW for his message to be sent. He is picking his winner. As if he knew a shred about what was best for us. He is pushing an agenda on the free market. In some ways all presidents do this. But this particular president has proven amazingly inept at producing garbage legislation. The Health care bill is crap, his NASA plan is a total joke and slap in the face to us (I am personally biased here, but none the less it is true), his bailout policy was BS (as was GWB's).

It is okay to have a leader that is clueless as long as he knows that and he surrounds himself with smart people. It is far more dangerous to have a clueless leader that thinks he is smart.

If he is going to force draconian CAFE standards on us, at least let the market pick the winner.

Do what others have said. Spread out the incentives to ANY car getting X mpg figures. Do not cherry pick electrics and hybrids. In almost every way, a good diesel would win.
Except emissions.

Obama didn't invent CAFE, it came from congress in the 70s during the oil embargo. As "evil" as you think it is, it's quite a good program for the most part. I'm not a big fan of the massive US -> Middle East wealth transfer for luxury's sake. Nevertheless, it was actually President Bush that signed in the increased cafe standards that you're bitching about.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Energy_...ty_Act_of_2007
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Old 02-16-2011, 01:38 PM   #24
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Default Living with a VW Jetta TDI: Weighing diesel fuel economy benefits against eventual ma






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When I set out to buy my son a car, I went with my conviction to buy him the safest one I could, so hopefully he will be around in my declining years to drive me around like I have been doing for his first 17 years. As a parent, testing cars has given me great insight in what would be the best car for a teen—one that's not too big so it is difficult to handle in emergency situations and not too small that it would not stand up well in a crash with a heavier vehicle. When parents ask me what car they should get for their teenagers, I more often than not suggest a four-cylinder family-sized sedan with good crash-test results, side and curtain air bags, ABS and, most importantly, ESC (electronic stability control).

My son is a bit of an environmentalist at heart. He likes the Toyota Prius and the thought of great gas mileage, but he doesn't like the way that hybrid drives. We found a Volkswagen Jetta TDI fit the bill nicely, with the requisite good mileage and motoring enjoyment. It also performs well in crash tests and has decent reliability according to our 2010 Annual Auto Survey. So, we bought one.
Our Jetta has been running well and came with free maintenance to 36,000 miles. I've always taken care of all my vehicle's service needs—oil changes, brakes, even head gaskets, A/C compressors and the like. So I took out the Jetta's owner's manual (yes, that book that hardly anyone reads) to check what was required at the 40,000-mile service. It included the usual engine oil and filter change, normal checks, a fuel filter change—which I expected being a diesel—but it also included a transmission oil and filter change.

Change the transmission oil and filter? Really?

Our Jetta TDI is equipped with a DSG (Direct Shift Gearbox) transmission, which, instead of having a torque converter like a conventional automatic transmission, acts like a manual gearbox that shifts automatically by using two clutches. This is designed to improve fuel economy by eliminating the energy losses in the torque converter. And it seems to be working: Our TDI is getting around 36 mpg... even with a 17-year-old boy at the wheel.

Considering the complexity of the DSG, I thought that changing the fluid and filter wouldn't be a big deal. I've worked on transmissions before, and I figured all I had to do was get the oil and filter from the VW dealer and change it while I'm replacing the engine oil.

So I sent my son down to the dealer to pick up the supplies on Saturday morning (but not too early as a 17-year-old is not really conscious until noon). However, things changed a little when he called me at the dealership parts department. He said that the service staff told him that we need special equipment to change the oil on a DSG transmission. I told him to come home without the parts and we'll investigate further... I don't always trust car dealers.

After reading forums such as VWvortex and TDIclub, I learned that to change the transmission oil and filter I had to get a special filler tube and a computer scan tool to recalibrate. These two pieces of equipment cost around $250, plus the cost of the fluid and filter. The dealer quoted $350 for the transmission oil and filter and $480 for the complete service, so I was left asking myself: "Where is the financial incentive of having this energy-saving transmission and even the diesel?" Doing a quick calculation the savings I would have achieved over a gasoline-powered car getting 28 mpg have just been cut in about half due to the cost of the transmission fluid change. The DSG transmission is only adding a small percent fuel economy gain compared to a regular automatic.

I have been called tight with my money, but I like to think of myself as frugal. But we decided to bring the car to the dealer, begrudgingly, to do the complete service. I suppose I did have free servicing up to 36,000 miles, but I still think it's odd that the first service I'm paying for necessitates spending money on the transmission.

When my son got back I looked at the invoice and saw the DSG fluid and filter had not been done, so I called the dealer. They told me they didn't perform this service as I would have had to ask for that separately—even though the service schedule clearly states that the DSG oil and filter charge are part of the 40K service. I learned that the DSG service would be an additional $350 on top of the $480 for the so-called complete service. They did agree to change the DSG for free when I complained that the "complete 40,000 mile service," for which I had paid, should have included the transmission.

If you own a VW with a DSG transmission that requires the oil and filter change every 40,000 miles make sure the dealer is performing this work at the service point. Failure to do so may void any warranty or "good will" should you have problems with the DSG later.

I'm also a little put out because the opportunity for quality bonding time in the garage with my son is gone, but, of course, he doesn't quite see it that way. He enjoys sleeping late on Saturday mornings.
http://blogs.consumerreports.org/car...nce-costs.html
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Old 02-16-2011, 02:03 PM   #25
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The other reason I won't buy a VW, their dealerships have a horrible reputation almost universally. You combine that with a product who's reliability I'm already a bit leery of and there's no way I'd spend my money on one.
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