Audi just cancelled its plans to bring a 2.0 liter diesel trim level for the 2017 A4 redesign it’s launching next month, despite plans to go through with it just two months ago. They added that it’s totally not because of Dieselgate. Totally.
Automotive News got the scoop from Audi of America President Scott Keogh, who said the luxury brand is cancelling plans for the diesel A4 due to the American market demanding more SUVs, and totally not the American government demanding compliant diesel engines.
Getting past the regulators wont be the issue in the long run, but rather the lack of demand for an engine platform that has been tainted by over six months of controversy, and some bullying from the U.S. government. Koegh is not wrong to say the demand for a diesel A4 won’t be there, but it’s not entirely due to demand for SUVs. Again, this car was coming to the U.S. as recent as January, so this is a new decision.
This shouldn’t be a surprise to anyone after Audi had to pull all of its applications for EPA approval of 2016 diesel models following a pending stop-sale on current Volkswagen Group diesel models. From Automotive News:
“We will get the cars certified and we would have brought [the A4 diesel] if there was enough demand,” Keogh said. “Every decision is a blend of a lot of things but I think the predominant thing is there was not significant market demand for the TDI sedans we had in the marketplace, A3, A6, A7 A8.”
Keogh declined to comment on Audi’s talks with the EPA.
He did confirm that Audi’s current diesel lineup will survive through their current life cycle.
The A4 will go on sale next month starting at $37,300 with a 252 hp turbo 2.0 liter four-cylinder, with the 3.0 liter turbo V6 coming in further down the road in the S4. The range will also expand to add an entry level four-cylinder sometime after launch.
Sad to hear the diesel is out due to the growing demand for SUVs and not the multi-billion dollar international diesel scandal. Oh well.