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Volvo CEO Says Diesel’s Days are Numbered

Hakan Samuelsson, Volvo’s CEO, recently revealed that this generation of diesel engines could be the company’s last.

Volvo predicts that with mid-cycle improvements the engine will be useful until about 2023, but that the cost of developing a new engine after that will cost too much to be feasible.

“From today’s perspective, we will not develop any more new generation diesel engines,” Samuelsson told Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, a German newspaper. The company later clarified that this was an option on the table, rather than a firm plan, speaking to Reuters.

“We have just launched a brand new generation of petrol and diesel engines, highlighting our commitment to this technology,” said Samuelsson. “As a result, a decision on the development of a new generation of diesel engines is not required.”

The rising cost of meeting emissions standards, though, will make hybrids more and more competitive as the years go on. Goldman Sachs believes that, in Europe, regulation could add €300 to the price of every diesel engine, which already cost about €1,300 more than their gasoline alternatives.

And with the approach of affordable all-electric vehicles, that’s also becoming an attractive avenue for Volvo to explore.

“We have to recognize that Tesla has managed to offer such a car for which people are lining up,” said Samuelsson. “In this area, there should also be space for us, with high quality and attractive design.”

[source: Reuters]

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