WASHINGTON, May 24, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- The new Volkswagen factory officially dedicated in Chattanooga, TN today will significantly increase the number of fuel-efficient and affordable automobiles in the U.S. market, including more clean diesel vehicles, said Allen Schaeffer, the Executive Director of the Diesel Technology Forum (DTF).
"Volkswagen is a global leader in clean diesel technology as is evident by their international market success and numerous recognition awards," Schaeffer said. "A good example of Volkswagen's 'green' commitment is that two of their clean diesel TDI products received 'Green Car of the Year' awards – the Jetta TDI in 2009 and the Audi TDI A3 in 2010.
"Volkswagen's new Chattanooga plant will produce a significant number of new clean diesel Passat TDI vehicles – as much as 30 percent when at full production. These new low-emission and high-gas mileage vehicles will be an important part of the solution for more fuel-efficient and clean energy transportation.
"Tremendous Growth Potential for Clean Diesel Cars in U.S. Market"
"As evidenced by today's grand opening, there is tremendous growth potential for clean diesel cars in the U.S. market. While almost 50 percent of all cars in Europe are diesel-powered, a more modest 3.3 percent of cars and light trucks in the U.S. are diesels. However, diesel car sales are increasing as the dramatic 46 percent growth in March 2011 over March 2010 illustrates. Recent estimates suggest that driven by the anticipated higher fuel economy requirements and growing consumer demand, clean diesel car sales in the U.S. could reach 10 percent in 2015.
"In addition, the high fuel prices of the past several months have also attracted new interest in diesel automobiles. New clean diesel cars are 20 to 40 percent more fuel efficient than their gasoline counterparts and they reduce the CO2 footprint.
"This $1 billion investment in Chattanooga and the 2,000 new direct jobs reflect Volkswagen's strong commitment to the U.S. market.
"The Diesel Technology Forum and our member companies congratulate Volkswagen for this important step in advancing clean diesel technology in the United States and North America."
ABOUT THE DIESEL TECHNOLOGY FORUM
The Diesel Technology Forum is a non-profit national organization dedicated to raising awareness about the importance of diesel engines, fuel and technology. Forum members are leaders in clean diesel technology and represent the three key elements of the modern clean-diesel system: advanced engines, vehicles and equipment, cleaner diesel fuel and emissions-control systems. For more information visit www.dieselforum.org.
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SOURCE Diesel Technology Forum