Volkswagen Australia has discontinued diesel-powered versions of its Golf small car, with no foreseeable plans for their return.
The drying up of diesel engine supplies and the lowering of customer demand have contributed to the Golf TDI's discontinuation, according to Volkswagen Australia product marketing manager Jeff Shafer.
"At the moment we don’t have any diesels in the Golf range," he said.
"It’s a change to the model-year 2019 changeover, and it is part of the WLTP (Worldwide Harmonized Light Duty Vehicles Test Procedure) changes coming through.
"That engine and others are not available to us anymore – the 110TDI, the 169TSI in the GTI, as well as the 135TDI in the Alltrack."
The new fuel consumption and emissions testing procedure is said to be more accurate for real-world conditions than the previous test and will be mandatory for all vehicles sold in Europe from September 1.
As there is a limited number of independent testing rigs available, it is believed Volkswagen Group is working tirelessly to complete testing on all of its variants.
Whether the Golf diesel will return when the eighth-generation version is revealed next year is still up in the air, with customer demand projected to drop even further.
Once accounting for 40 per cent of total Golf sales, factors including the reduced average petrol consumption in new cars, the comparatively stable oil prices and the fallout from the Volkswagen 'dieselgate' scandal have contributed to the TDI now accounting for less than 10 per cent of sales.
"I don’t know whether we will see (diesel) come back in the current car, but we do have a little bit further down the road with the Golf ‘8’ coming, and we’ll see what we do with diesel engines then," Mr Shafer said.
"We always try to look at what the market wants and what customers are buying. And diesels have been a fairly minimal part of the Golf range in terms of the mix and sales, so we’ll evaluate that as we move forward.
"When we look at the trends in the marketplace, diesel in passenger vehicles has been declining across the board for some time, and I think that has to do with the advancements that we’ve been seeing on the petrol side.
"The petrol Golf 110TSI produces good torque and fuel efficiency, meaning you can get very good performance from a low-capacity engine and really good driveability at the same time.
"Petrol engines have really come quite far."
Check out all 2018 Volkswagen Golf price and spec info here.
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