J.D. Power Automotive Forecasting projects the global marketshare for diesel-powered cars and light trucks will reach 26% by 2015, up from 18% in 2005. Western Europe has been the key driver in the growth of diesel vehicle demand for the past 10 years, said Power, but increased demand from consumers in other regions will promote growth during the next decade.
"As a proven, cost-effective and ‘off-the-shelf’ solution, diesel has a head start over other emerging fuel-efficient technologies," said Alastair Bedwell, senior manager for J.D. Power Automotive Forecasting. "With energy prices at elevated levels and new regulatory pressure to improve light-truck fuel efficiency, a range of fuel-efficient alternatives to the conventional gasoline engine will be required. The U.S. and Canada are markets with enormous potential for diesel light-vehicle sales."
Power said the diesel share of U.S. light-vehicle sales is expected to increase from 3.2% in 2005 to more than 10% by the middle of the next decade. However, diesel prospects in key Asian markets remains mixed.
"South Korea and India are key markets for diesel growth in Asia, and the market in China is continuously developing," said Bedwell. "However, near- and mid-term prospects for diesel vehicle sales in Japan remain limited. There has been some rejection of diesel technology among consumers, despite Japanese manufacturers embracing the technology."