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The end is nigh – for the diesel car

Robin Bowman

Robin Bowman
Sep 8, 2016

Renault, the French car giant, has revealed it will phase out the manufacture of diesel models as European emission rules become ever more strict.

It blames the tightening of standards on the VW scandal in which the German manufacturer fiddled data to make its cars seem greener than they are.

The news comes after the French firm, along with its rival Peugeot, have invested heavily in diesel technology and last year more than 60% of the 1.6 million cars it sold were diesel.

In four years time, however, much tougher EU-wide emissions laws will come into force.

Two people present at an internal Renault meeting are reported to have revealed that the company’s 

Chief Competitiveness Officer Thierry Bollore said the diesel investment outlook had dimmed significantly.

One of them said: “He said we were now wondering whether diesel would survive, and that he wouldn't have voiced such doubts even at the start of this year.”

“Tougher standards and testing methods will increase technology costs to the point where diesel is forced out of the market,” they told the Mail.

Car manufacturers are putting far more resources into developing electric cars. 

Diesel engines currently cost significantly more than petrol engines, but are more efficient and will generally last considerably longer.

By 2020 Renault believes many fewer cars will be diesel, a view shared by other car manufacturers. Chief Executive of VW, Matthias Mueller said earlier this year that the company wonders “whether it still makes sense to invest a lot of money in further developing diesel.

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