Friday, March 29, 2013

NY Auto Show: New BMW 328d is One of Many Diesel Models Coming to the States

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The United States has finally received its version of what many call "the best all-rounder in the world" – the BMW 320d. However, for marketing reasons we don't fully understand, they did not use the European model name, going instead for 328d, despite the fact that the car runs a two-liter diesel. Revealed at the New York Auto Show, the oil-burning BMW is one of many new diesels Germany has lined up for U.S. introduction.
Since the F30 3-Series has been discussed before, we'll go into more detail about the 328d's powertrain. The engine is a 2.0-liter unit, with two turbochargers and direct injection. It is good for 180hp and 290 pound-feet (393 Nm) of peak torque and returns a claimed 45 mpg on the highway (5.2 l/100km) – if the European version, which we are very familiar with, is anything to go by, that figure can be improved on.
BMW is only offering the 328d with its smooth eight-cog automatic and optional xDrive all-wheel grip – a manual option will not be offered.
According to an Autonews report, some 25 percent of all X5 SUVs bought in the US are now diesels, and with this 3-Series diesel and a six-cylinder 5-Series diesel on the way, the Bavarians are slowly beginning to cover all of the bases. BMW has not had a diesel 3-Series in the range since it stopped Stateside-sales of the 335d, in 2011. The new 328d is expected to cost around $40,000, when it goes on sale this fall.
Aside from BMW, Audi is also looking to increase the number of diesels it offers in the US. Their range of compression-ignition-powered vehicles is currently limited to three: A3 hatch, A8 sedan and Q7 SUV. These models will be joined by the A4, A6, A7 and Q5 crossover for the 2014 model-year. Audi says that half of all new A3s sold are diesels, and so are 36 percent of the Q7s they sell, so the market is clearly there now, and will grow in coming years.
By Andrei Nedelea




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