Happy Birthday Rudolph!!

March 18th is apparently Rudolph Diesel’s birthday.  Imagine inventing something so successfully that your name is used around the world and becomes the defining term for an entire genre of goods.  It’s not just an engine, it’s a ‘diesel’ engine. 

I’m not sure what sort of product I’d like named after me.  Perhaps a particularly comfy leather lounge suite.  "No, it’s not suede, it’s Swade.

Anyway, happy birthday Rudolph.

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Autoblog are also reporting today on a new range of GM diesels being developed to meet not only European emissions standards, but US ones as well.  An un-named member of GM’s European management has been caught mentioning a 2.9l V6 and a 4.5l V8 as possibilities for release in the US in 2008.

2008 – right when the new 9-5 with AWD should be released.

Diesel should become a more viable fuel in the US in 2007, when new low-sulphur regulations come into effect.  What I’d like to know is whether or not the 1.9l common-rail diesel currently selling so well in Europe is compatible with emissions regulations in the US, either now or as they’ll stand next year.

Saab have a fantastic diesel engine already.  If the US is an open market for diesels in 2007 and Saab are able to enter but are late to the party, then GM will have shot themselves in the foot – again – and big time. 

I guess one year isn’t a long time to wait in the automotive world, but it just seems like too good a leadership opportunity to miss. 

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4 Comments

  1. Right you are, Swade! Not to mention that Saab also leads in turbocharging, a natural for diesel powerplants. I’ve never driven a diesel that I thought was very responsive, however.

  2. Happy birthday to him.
    I wonder when it’s Wankels birthday.Happy birthday for whenever Felix.
    What about Barry Otto,i mean Nikolaus Otto,if it’s your birthday then suck,squeeze,bang and blow like its your birthday

  3. Why why why in the world would you want to make a 4.5 litre V8 diesel when
    You can get 400+ Nm out of a 1.9 litre TDI engine…
    That kind of absurd products deserves to flop… 🙁

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