Car Culture

11 Diesel Passenger Cars You Can Still Buy In The USA

That's all we could find. But more are coming...

Diesel is dirty, and while Volkswagen may still be feeling this in its bank accounts, many brands haven’t offered diesel derivatives in the US for quite some time. With the numbers dwindling more than ever before, we decided to find out just how many diesel vehicles are still on sale in the US. We’ve purposefully excluded commercial vehicles and vehicles like pick-ups, and have limited the list exclusively to passenger vehicles still available with a diesel engine.

BMW 3 Series (328d) – sedan and wagon

You’re unlikely to see many, but the BMW 3 Series sedan and sport wagon are sold with a single diesel derivative in the 328d. Both feature a 2.0-liter 4 cylinder turbo-diesel engine that develops 180 horsepower and 280 lb-ft of torque. It’s available solely with the excellent 8-speed automatic ZF gearbox, and can be had in rear-wheel drive, or xDrive all-wheel drive. With a 0-60 mph time of just over 7 seconds, the 328d provides impressive performance, but with exceptional fuel economy.

BMW X5

The second BMW on this list, the X5 is available in 35d trim. It packs the seriously impressive 3.0-liter turbo-diesel six-cylinder engine under its hood, developing 255 hp and 413 lb-ft. This diesel engine provides comparable performance to the 540i gasoline straight 6, but with economy figures to match a small commuter hatch, and towing ability to outdo most gasoline powered V8s.

Chevrolet Cruze

With VW’s diesel dreams laying in tatters, if Chevrolet could market it right the Cruze diesel might be its ticket to controlling the diesel market. The Cruze features a 1.6-liter turbo diesel 4 cylinder that produces a meager 137 hp and 240 lb-ft, but in a body as small as the Cruze hatch and sedan, it makes full use of the torque and delivers serious economy – EPA rated at a combined 35 mpg.

Chevrolet Equinox

The Chevrolet Equinox is one of three Chevy models to utilize diesel, and one of two passenger cars. It uses the same 1.6-liter turbo diesel unit as found in the Cruze, paired with a 6-speed automatic gearbox. In a body as large as the Equinox’s, the engine isn’t quite as efficient, but the masses of torque are impressive nonetheless.

GMC Terrain

It’s no real surprise that there’s a GMC alternative to the Chevrolet Equinox running the same gear underneath. That’s exactly what the GMC Terrain is, and comes packing the same 137-hp diesel four-cylinder as the Cruze and Equinox. Paired with front wheel drive, it’s more economical than the large crossover/SUV body might suggest, and the 6-speed automatic gearbox manages torque efficiently through the narrow power band.

Land Rover Discovery

Jaguar Land Rover boasts the biggest contingency of diesel models in the United States at present, with no less than six models packing diesel power. The 5th generation Land Rover Discovery features a 3.0-liter turbo diesel V6 engine developing 254 hp and a mammoth 443 lb-ft. It’s capable of combined mpg ratings of 23, whilst still being able to tow up to 7,716 pounds. As far as diesel engine go, this one’s an absolute gem, and the ZF 8-speed automatic gearbox manages torque superbly.

Range Rover Velar

The Range Rover Velar in S trim features a 2.0-liter turbo diesel motor under its hood. It generates outputs of 180 hp and 317 lb-ft of torque. It’s part of Jaguar Land Rover’s Ingenium engine range, and while it’s decently efficient, it isn’t the most refined unit. It still offers decent economy of a combined 28 mpg in the Velar though, so there’s some worthwhile compromises here.

Range Rover

The standard Range Rover features the same 3.0-liter turbo diesel V6 as the Land Rover Discovery in the same 254-hp trim. With a touch more luxury though, the Range Rover will likely find itself using that diesel torque for towing the family yacht to the weekend holiday home rather than doing any heavy duty work or off-roading.

Jaguar F-Pace

Since the Jaguar F-Pace and Range Rover Velar share underpinnings, it’s hardly surprising that the F-Pace also makes use of the 2.0-liter Ingenium diesel engine with the same 180-hp output. Just like other applications, it isn’t the best diesel engine out there, but even the diesel motor can’t ruin the F-Pace as one of the best driver’s SUVs, period.

Jaguar XE

The Jaguar XE is not only dynamically capable of rivaling the BMW 3 Series as a premium sports sedan in terms of chassis and handling, but thanks to the option of a diesel engine, it can rival it for economy too. It matches the 3 Series for its 180-hp power output, but with 317 lb-ft of torque it outguns the 328d in the torque stakes. The only problem is that the Jag’s diesel doesn’t feel as cohesive a product with the rest of the vehicle as the BMW’s does.

Jaguar XF

Available in all-wheel drive or rear-wheel drive, the Jaguar XF is the 11th and final diesel passenger car available in the USA. But the engine it uses has already been mentioned numerous times on this list, as it shares the same 180-hp Ingenium 4 cylinder as the XE, F-Pace, and Range Rover Velar. Only available as a sedan with the diesel engine, the XF diesel is aimed squarely at reps who require a classy vehicle, but require diesel economy.

Coming Soon – Mazda CX-5 Diesel

There are several models supposedly touted to be released with diesel engines soon, but the Mazda CX-5 diesel is the only one we could actually find on a manufacturers website, hence its inclusion here. The CX-5 diesel features a 2.2-liter turbo-diesel 4 cylinder boasting at least 173 horsepower and 310 lb-ft of torque, though rumor has it that in the US it may generate more. Expect it to arrive towards the end of 2018 as a 2019 year model.

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