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Gridley Herald - Gridley, CA
Advice on keeping your vehicles in good condition, saving on gas and more.
Diesel rides in demand for 2014
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Advice from GateHouse News Service on keeping your vehicles in good condition, saving on gas and tips from national auto columnist Junior Damato. Ready your car for the seasons, get advice for your teen drivers, and get the scoop on new, concept and ...
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Advice from GateHouse News Service on keeping your vehicles in good condition, saving on gas and tips from national auto columnist Junior Damato. Ready your car for the seasons, get advice for your teen drivers, and get the scoop on new, concept and upcoming makes and models.
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ARA diesel
Not that long ago, finding a diesel car or truck - a truck with fewer than 18 wheels, anyway - on an American highway was about as rare as an icy road in July. Not so today. The era of dirty, smelly and noisy diesel vehicles has gone the way of the 8-track tape player, clearing a path for high-profile and increasingly popular diesel sedans, SUVs and pickup trucks.
Jan. 3, 2014 3:20 p.m.



Not that long ago, finding a diesel car or truck - a truck with fewer than 18 wheels, anyway - on an American highway was about as rare as an icy road in July. Not so today. The era of dirty, smelly and noisy diesel vehicles has gone the way of the 8-track tape player, clearing a path for high-profile and increasingly popular diesel sedans, SUVs and pickup trucks.



- Fueling great mileage: One of the main advantages of diesel vehicles is their excellent fuel economy. Diesel fuel costs about 7 percent more than gasoline at the pump, but it can take a car or truck much farther down the road. On average, a vehicle running on diesel fuel gains 30 to 35 percent in fuel efficiency over a vehicle running on traditional gasoline. Diesel fuel has a greater amount of energy per gallon than gasoline, says Neil Hoff of CHS, a company that produces diesel fuel for fleet operations across the country. This is why a diesel car can average closer to 50 mpg on the highway.



- Responding to demand: Though long popular in Europe, diesel vehicles have not yet enjoyed widespread popularity in the United States. However, American automakers are taking a cue from consumers who desire an alternative to gasoline-fueled cars. For example, Chevrolet has introduced its 2014 Cruze Clean Turbo Diesel, a compact car that boasts 46 mpg on the highway; and the 2014 Jeep Grand Cherokee diesel claims to drive up to 730 miles on one tank of gas. Other companies, including Volkswagen, Audi, Mercedes-Benz and Porsche all offer diesel varieties that carmakers hope consumers will warm to. Trucks are not left out of the equation, with diesel pickups available from Chevrolet/GMC, Ford and Ram.



- Powered by technology: Diesel engines, too, have undergone great advances, such as high-pressure injection technologies that promote engine health and longevity. "Diesel engines have come a long way in the past decade and are certainly more marketable than they used to be," Hoff said.

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