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Here's One Upside to a European Diesel Downfall

15 - 1982 Buick LeSabre Diesel in California junkyard - photo by Murilee Martin

With European regulators taking a closer look at the continent’s wonder fuel?- diesel, that is?- in the wake of Volkswagen’utes emissions scandal, oil burners could hasten their own disappearance from European Union roads.

That would be great for cops in the UK, who appear increasingly confused about what sort of fuel goes in their patrol car’s tank.

The nation logged 2,147 cases of diesel being added to a gasoline law enforcement vehicle’s tank (or vice versa) between This year and 2015, AutoExpress reports, needing over $580,000 within repairs borne through the taxpayer.

It’s a small number in the grand scheme of things, sure, however the instances are rising. British police fleets, such as those in other European countries, were once heavy with gas vehicles, but diesel gradually crept into the ranks. Many forces now have more diesel than gasoline vehicles, mirroring their country’s civilian navy.

The market share for diesel tops 50 percent in lots of European countries?- Spain, France, Italy as well as Sweden, to name a few, and the UK until just recently. According to data published by the European Automobiles Manufacturers Association, it seems that following rising steeply through the 2000s, the high water mark has arrived.

It will be fascinating to see those trendlines as soon as 2016 numbers roll within.

The added scrutiny placed on the manufacturers of diesel vehicles (which have led to many investigations), along with new emission regulations, a reigning in of tax breaks, advances within gasoline engine technology and the slow electrification of the automotive landscape, will certainly conspire to see diesel’s share of the market drop much additional.

Of course, switching diesel-heavy municipal fleets to gasoline vehicles won’t have a pleased ending for the citizen, even if fuel confusion damage ceases immediately. They’d still be responsible for the increased gas consumption of the fleets, erasing any savings.

Ditching the tax breaks that fueled the rise in diesel possession would help slow the actual drain on European coffers – meaning, obviously, that there’d be more revenue coming in to offset expenditures — and could theoretically benefit an average citizen. Whether your that citizen views any personal benefit depends on a lot of things, such as whether they have a car, and just what kind of fuel it uses.

However, an increase in revenue on that side of things might be met with a reduction in new vehicle product sales from domestic manufacturers. There’s no end to the different angles in this issue.

Don't be shellfish...
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