Diesel vs. Gas VW Sportwagon


I know that Diesels are the preferred engine for the GOLF Sportwagon, which I am considering buying. The 2015 upcharge for a diesel is $3,000…seems unlikely to payback on fuel savings alone…maybe with higher resale if that continues. And while diesel fuel is about at parity with gasoline now…it has often been higher, much higher I thnk

Emotionally, I would like a diesel. Financially, it seems unlikely to make sense

I would be curious as to why it is still the most popular engine choice, and any free thoughts

Thanks in advance


The new turbo-diesels make for a sporty, fun drive and get very good mpg, so lower fueling prices and less frequent fueling required compared to gasoline. The other factor is that diesel engines have a reputation for being very robust, requiring less non-scheduled maintenance than gasoline engines. I’m not sure whether or not the facts would back that up, but that’s their reputation.

Contrast today’s sporty, fast diesels with the first VW diesel Rabbit, which I think boasted a 0-60 time of somewhere in the vicinity of 20 seconds.

Edit: One downside, I think in the USA , not sure if this applies elsewhere, the emissions folks require diesel engines on new cars be equipped with some kind of exhaust gas chemical treatment, which adds some ongoing expense.

If you drive 15,000 miles each year, you would save $250/year with the TDI. At that rate, it would take 12 years to equal $3000. The price for regular unleaded is $2.64 and $2.54 for diesel in this evaluation. Add in that diesels often have higher maintenance costs, and you will never pay off the difference.

Yeah, you’ll be lucky to break even. But if you want the experience of a diesel, go for it. I bought my Insight knowing it wouldn’t pay off, but I just wanted to experience a hybrid. Now at 60K, averaging an honest 50 mpg, and it’s been the perfect car for me.

I find it hard to believe that diesels outsell the gas engine.

I drove 480,000 miles in a diesel and would never have one again. Diesel is always higher priced than gas, requires additional maintenance, and you have to be very careful in the winter to make sure the fuel is properly mixed. Stalling with the fuel gelled when its 20 below out is not fun.

I can’t speak from experience, but last time I looked, the 2.0 L TDI engine has 236 lb. ft. of torque from 1700 RPM up into the high midrange, meaning that in the RPM range you would usually want to run your engine, it has the power of a good-sized gasoline V-6.

Test drive them both, if you love the diesel, get it. But know the new 1.8l gas engine is getting really good mpgs, so no savings by going diesel, I bet. Not worth the cost/trouble to me.

Around here diesel is cheaper than gasoline; at the moment. It won’t last more than likely.

For 3 grand more the diesel option would be hard to swallow.

Lately I dont think diesel has ever been cheaper then regular gas(for the past 10 yrs) Diesels arent what they used to be,the old slow eternal,stinky engine is gone.Now even the hotrodders are using them,Banks engineering are producing high performance Diesels that have the characteristics of of high performance Gas engines(with better economy I hope)
Yes 3K, would be a deal breaker for Me,it goes back to what I have said all along,due to the price of premium engines,you really dont have a choice.

The gas car gets an EPA average of 30 mpg and the diesel gets 35 mpg.

Even the newest diesel engines fall flat one their faces around 4000 RPM. Whilst a modern high performance gas engine will rev to 7000 RPM or better, and produce good power while doing so. A lot of people will laude diesels for the their low end grunt. But if you compare apples to apples (I.E. forced induction to forced induction of the same displacement a gas engine will usually match it. Compare VW 2.0L TDI to it’s 2.0L TSI engines. Both are 2 liters in displacement, both are DOHC, both have direct fuel injection and both are turbocharged. In their respective top states to of tune, the diesel (as found in the Golf GTD makes 181 HP, and 280 lbs/ft of torque. The petrol/gas engine (In the Golf GTI R) makes 296 HP and matches the diesel for torque at 280 lbs/ft. The gas engine produces 280 lb/ft of torque from 1800-5500 RPM, the diesel provides peak torque from 1750-3250 RPM. With that said the diesel will get about 8 MPG better which isn’t insignificant. But for given the up front price premium. It’s something to think about. Personally I would go with the gas engine, get superior performance and save some money at the same time.

Yeah, but really, how much time do you spend >4,000 RPM anyways? Maybe this is a bone fide Achilles’s heel for a sport vehicle, but in a grocery-getter, I could easily live with less brag-worthy (peak) HP numbers, so long as HP at everyday RPMs was conserved.

Well, they are marketing the car as a sportwagon

Well low end torque certainly is useful around town,but if the gas engine has sufficient torque its a bit superflous(you dont need to burn rubber at every takeoff{electrics can do that} but each to their own,some people simply love diesels(but modern diesels arent the simple eternal deal anymore-buy them with eyes open}

FoDaddy, assuming those torque numbers are in ft-lbs.

lbs/ft is NOT torque.

@BillRussell You are correct, my mistake.