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June 01 2017
By Tim Deakin

Tim is Editor of routeone and has worked in both the coach and bus and haulage industries.

Diesel is a long way from extinction yet: Survey

Automotive industry leaders regard diesel as here for the  long-term

The powers that be have made it clear that diesel will be persona non grata in the UK’s urban areas very soon, and regardless of which party forms the next government, that’s likely to continue.

But instead of listening to hysterical denunciations of diesel as an ‘urban killer’, it’s perhaps more worthwhile to take in the views of people who know what they’re talking about, and who know what needs to change if alternative forms of propulsion are to be adopted.

Earlier this year, KPMG released its annual Global Automotive Executive Survey. It quizzes movers and shakers across the automotive industry on where they think the future lies.

For diesel, it makes interesting reading, just as it does for battery electric.

76% of respondents predict that internal combustion engines will remain more important than electric propulsion “for a very long time,” with concerns over the latter’s long-term viability driven by poor charging infrastructure.

In the next parliament, changes are undoubtedly ahead for the coach and bus industry, particularly concerning its environmental impact. Will diesel be scapegoated? Probably.

But politicians can only act on what they know, and that’s where operators come in. Electric and hydrogen fuel cells will be viable only when a support network is in place, so make sure that your MP knows that. Otherwise, it could become a lot tougher for diesel before any realistic options are in place that the coach and bus industry in its entirety can make use of.

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