Volkswagen is the number one brand for diesel cars in the United Kingdom, selling more than any other marque during 2002. The brand took the overall diesel crown with 77,195 cars sold through its UK retailer network.

In addition, the Golf was by far the best selling diesel car in the UK during the last twelve months. Total registrations came to 34,047, a clear 4,685 ahead of its nearest competitor. With its unrivalled range of four diesel engines, spanning from 68 PS to 150 PS, the Golf offers more choice for diesel customers than any other car in its class.

Last year was an exceptional year for diesel cars in the UK, with sales setting a new record of 602,623 units, according to figures supplied by the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT). The overall diesel market penetration rose to its highest ever level, at 23.5 per cent, though Volkswagen was far ahead of this with 43.1 per cent of its registrations being diesel.

Volkswagen offers its customers at least one diesel option in every one of its model ranges, with engines such as the 75 PS 1.4-litre three-cylinder TDI PD, the 130 PS 1.9-litre TDI PD and the 150 PS 2.5-litre V6 TDI. This year will see the arrival of further diesel powerplants, including the world’s most powerful diesel passenger car engine, the 313 PS V10 TDI, which will feature in the Phaeton luxury saloon and Touareg off-road vehicle.

Diesels are enjoying more popularity than ever, for a number of reasons. The most significant factor is the new carbon dioxide emissions based taxation for company car drivers, as diesel cars tend to produce lower levels of CO2 than their petrol equivalents. This is because diesels burn less fuel over a given distance, which of course also saves money at the pumps.

However, recent improvements made to the performance, refinement, and efficiency of many diesel engines have also influenced the resurgent diesel market, and no manufacturer has made more progress in this area than Volkswagen with its TDI Pumpe Düse or PD (meaning ‘unit injector’) technology. Compared with more widespread common rail systems, PD injects fuel at a much greater pressure, which leads to unrivalled power outputs along with outstanding fuel efficiency.

Paul Willis, Director of Volkswagen Cars in the UK, said: ‘We made our intention clear early last year that we would finish 2002 as the number one diesel brand in the UK. Thanks to our technological lead and strong reputation compared with our diesel competitors, we have achieved that goal.’

Published : 10/01/03 Author : Melanie Carter

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