Diesel Cars for Sale: What to Expect

November 13, 2013

Learn the best places to find diesel cars for sale, diesel car types, sale options, and how diesel engines compare to gas engines.

Diesel Car Detail

The price point of diesel cars for sale is often the starting place that many people see before they look at the rest of the vehicle. This price can fluctuate depending on many different factors. Of course, depending on the type of diesel vehicle you are looking at, the prices can vary widely. Here are some things to consider in the prices of diesel cars for sale.

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Geographic Location
Where you live will determine some of the price quoted. People living in the Northeast will see a slightly larger diesel cars price than people who live in the south. This is because more people generally buy diesel cars in the warmer areas than in the colder regions. If you want to buy a diesel car for a good price you might consider buying one out of your area.

Type of Diesel Car
When you buy a diesel car you can find any type of vehicle. This means hatchbacks, four door sedans, SUVs, and trucks. Each type of vehicle has a different price point, depending on the model and trim associated with it.

Engine Size
Overall engine size is going to be a big determining factor in price. Compared to a Volkswagen Golf with a smaller 4-cylinder 2.0L engine, the Jetta with a 3.0L will cost substantially more. Even in cars of the same make, the size of the engine in the more expensive models will dictate that price.

American Diesel Offerings
Currently, European drivers are still the largest percent of the population that drives diesel cars. When you buy a diesel car in the U.S., you are going to spend a slightly higher price. As the demand continues to grow in the U.S., prices will begin to drop. The cost is not a significant difference, but you will end up paying hundreds more.

Diesel vs. Gas Engines
When looking at diesel cars for sale, one of the big things you will see right off the bat is that diesel powered cars will be slightly more expensive than their gasoline counterparts. This is because buyers are charged a premium for the diesel engines. This mark-up is from the dealer and not the manufacturer. As you talk to the salesperson, you can negotiate a little off the actual price you pay.

Diesel Car Sale Options

Finding new diesel cars for sale requires some attention to specific times during the year, when buying a diesel car will cost you less than at other times.

End and Beginning of Year
December is not only a good month for Christmas sales. You can also find diesel cars at cheap prices sitting on dealers lots. They need to get rid of these cars in order to make room for the new year's models. Some of these cars may have been sitting on their books for the entire year, and they need to make their money back for investing in new inventory. Huge slashes are made to prices during this time of year. A lot of people pass this time of year up because they are busy getting ready for Christmas. However, if you are in the market for a new diesel car, then wait until December or January to buy it.

Start of Summer Sales
Diesel cars are at great prices as the seasons begin to change from spring to summer. This is the time when new car fever is hitting at its highest, and people are looking for a great price. Dealers realize this and will hold incredible deals on cars that have either just arrived, or have been sitting there since the beginning of the year. Manufacturers will also add to the buying frenzy by offering its best rebates and dealer incentives during this time of year.

Rebate Offerings
Rebates are usually offered because the car is not selling as quickly as they like and there is an overstock on the lot, or there is a new model that will be introduced soon. Rebates can offer incredible savings of up to $5,000 on certain makes and models.

High Gas Prices
It may sound like a bad time to buy a car, but when gas prices start to rise, buying a diesel engine vehicle is going to cost less. This is because the dealerships will be offered incentives by the manufacturers to help move some of the bigger vehicles off the lot.

An Historic Look at Diesel Car Sales

The diesel car is not a new phenomenon, being around for well over 75 years, but in the last decade diesel car sales have greatly increased. This is due to two new trends in car manufacturing, which make it possible for the average car owner to have a new diesel car, and use it every day. A history of the diesel car reveals the changes in popularity it has undergone since it was first developed. From its beginnings in the 1930s, the diesel car has always been in use, although it was not always as popular as it is now.

Before the 1980s
Prior to the 1980s, diesel car sales were not very large, being mostly limited to commercial vehicles such as ambulances, delivery vehicles, and long-haul trucks. Mercedes produced a series of diesel taxis, but the car was not in general circulation, and there was limited interest in the design. In the 1960s, in response to an oil crisis in America and Europe, car makers began to produce diesel cars for the general driver, but they were again, limited in their popularity.

Advances in the 80s and 90s
This changed in the 1980s, with the development of the turbo diesel engine. Peugeot and Citroen both developed mass-produced diesel cars which were the fore-runners of the cars produced in the current era. These cars are still able to be run today, and in fact are particularly compatible with the modern wave of biofuels. Annual car design alterations were yet to create the type of demand for cars which the 21st century has witnessed, so these cars all had a limited run.

In the 1990s, car makers started to produce hybrids, which use an electric motor to power the machine for part of the time, and a gasoline engine for the rest. In the late 1990s, the first diesel cars for motor racing was used, and this increased interest in the potential for use in every day driving. People were interested in the fact that the car used a lot less fuel, and won simply by needing to stop for diesel less often than its gas powered rivals.

The 21st Century
The results of interest in climate change, and the awareness that cars produce pollutants through their exhaust has led to the increased popularity of the diesel car. It is easy to see that private diesel cars sales have shot up, from an amount below 10 percent to somewhere above 40 percent of all new cars sold. In addition, diesel cars are still winning races, simply through fuel economy, and this keeps the opportunity for saving money in the public's mind.

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