Light duty diesels

A new report from Ricardo predicts a significant rise in sales in the US for light duty diesel vehicles over the coming decade.

The company says that sales in the light duty vehicle segment (up to 8,500 pounds gross vehicle weight) are projected to grow from a mere 43,000 units in 2004 to over 1 million units annually by 2012, rising to 1.5 million by 2015.

Elsewhere, the global growth of light duty diesel sales continues apace, with 2004 posting the largest volume increase for a decade.

The sales ratio of diesel to gasoline vehicles for the larger manufacturers continues to grow, led by Volkswagen which now reports over 60% of its car sales as diesels.

In Western Europe, diesel car sales in 2004 continued to flourish in all of the major national markets, with overall penetration reaching a record level of over 48% and with no immediate sign of a slow down.

In the context of a marginally strengthening passenger car market in Western Europe compared with that of 2003, a 5.4% decrease in gasoline sales was more than offset by an 11.9% increase in diesel sales.

US light duty diesel vehicles: sales are on the up