More and more Americans are finding the pros (and cons, but mostly pros) of diesel fuel, and in response, more and more manufacturers have been only too happy to satisfy that demand with new lines of engines that meet the U.S. emissions codes for passenger vehicles. Remember, these diesels aren’t the diesels of old — the black smoke-spewing, noisy power plants that many automatically associate with the term. Today’s diesels are far more refined, and for non-auto folks, it’s pretty difficult to tell a non-diesel from a diesel based on looks alone.
But diesels are often far more expensive than their comparative gasoline models, so what’s the point? For one, diesel cars and trucks offer far better fuel economy, but without a significant trade-off to performance, which is a key drawback for hybrids. They also offer more torque, which makes them ideal for towing or simply carrying large amounts of weight for whatever reason.
Now, from hatchbacks to pickups, there’s a diesel vehicle for just about everyone willing to part with the extra cash. The segment is still dominated by luxury brands like Audi, Mercedes and BMW, but with entries like the Chevrolet Cruze, diesels are catching on once again as an increasingly popular play on an efficient vehicle.
Here are nine different diesel vehicles that suit just about every need (except sports car — a diesel sports car hasn’t made it here quite yet).