General Motors (NYSE:GM) is touting the surprising fuel economy of its newest Chevrolet Cruze model.
The diesel version of the popular compact car has received an EPA-estimated rating of 46 miles per gallon in highway driving. That rating boosts the Cruze Diesel past even Volkswagen‘s (PINK:VLKAY) sporty Jetta diesel, which received a EPA-estimated rating of 42 miles per gallon on the highway, the Washington Post notes.
In a bid to boost fuel economy in the face of ever-escalating gas prices, automakers are turning to diesel vehicles. In fact, some experts say that diesels, traditionally a niche in the U.S. car market, could comprise as much as 10% of vehicles in the U.S. car sales in just two years.
While the Cruze Diesel does get better gas mileage than the Jetta, it also costs more. The Jetta TGI Diesel starts at $24,950, while the Cruze Diesel has a basic price of $26,505. However, GM hopes buyers will take into account its longer warranty and interior perks, including an advanced MyLink infotainment system.
Chevrolet has sold more than 2 million Cruze vehicles worldwide since the car debuted in 2010. It competes with other compact cars, including Toyota‘s (NYSE:TM) Corolla, Honda‘s (NYSE:HMC) Civic and Ford’s (NYSE:F) Escort.
In February, Consumer Reports said that turbocharged engines, including those found in the Chevy Cruze, only marginally outperformed standard engines and fell short of EPA fuel economy ratings in real world testing.
Shares of GM sank almost 1% in Thursday midday trading.