Diesel is the first choice for SUVs



Improved efficiency and performance with Bosch technology

Sport utility vehicles (SUVs) are rapidly conquering the streets of the western world – and there are Bosch diesel components in almost all of them. The ten most popular SUVs in Germany all feature Bosch injection technology, which reduces fuel consumption by ensuring efficient combustion. Bosch common-rail injection systems are also found in many compact SUVs.
Modern diesel components allow SUV driving enjoyment at reduced fuel consumption
Registration figures from the German Federal Motor Transport Authority confirm this SUV growth trend. With the rise of models such as the VW Tiguan, the BMW X3, and the Audi Q5, every sixth new vehicle registered in Germany is now an SUV. In the United States, they already have a market share of 30 percent. And the next few years will see a further global SUV surge, with some 50 new models set for launch by 2017 alone.

Diesel is an advantage for SUVs

Many people choose SUVs for their higher driving position and excellent all-round visibility. Their robust chassis is another good reason, as is the flexibility of their seating. But this increase in comfort should not come at too high a price in terms of fuel consumption. "Diesel is the first choice for SUVs," says Markus Heyn, president of the Diesel Systems division. The statistics back him up: in Europe alone, some 80 percent of SUVs are diesel-powered.

"Their combination of high torque and fuel economy makes diesel powertrains ideal for larger vehicles," explains Heyn. As well as making large models more fun to drive, high torque gives even compact SUVs plenty of power to tow caravans and boats. Efficient high-pressure direct injection reduces fuel consumption and hence increases range.

Today's diesel-powered cars can travel around 30 percent further on a single tank than their gasoline equivalents, which means drivers can keep going for long periods without having to stop for fuel. What's more, modern diesel SUVs make less noise, running quietly and with less vibration.

U.S. manufacturers are also beginning to offer diesel SUVs

When it comes to U.S. or Asian producers' SUVs, diesel engines are something of a rarity. An exception is Chrysler's Jeep Grand Cherokee. For a long time, it was the only U.S. SUV for which there was a diesel version. In the next few years it will be joined by further U.S. models. But the majority of non-European SUVs are gasoline-powered. Here, buyers should appreciate a modern gasoline direct-injection system, which offers more dynamic performance while achieving a fuel saving of 12 percent compared to traditional manifold injection.

There is another alternative powertrain for SUVs: the plug-in hybrid. Combining an economical internal-combustion engine with powerful electrification, this system offers drivers a range of up to 60 kilometers of purely electric driving. Since plug-in hybrid powertrains are significantly more expensive, they currently appeal above all to customers for whom driving enjoyment is the key consideration, because their additional electric drive delivers even more dynamic performance. However, charging a plug-in hybrid regularly at a power outlet can cut energy costs by up to 90 percent.