Volkswagen will axe diesel engines from its line-up in Australia, starting in October, although it claims that the decision is not related to the Dieselgate emissions cheating scandal.
At present, the only diesel engines the company sells in the country are the 110 TDI in the Golf and Tiguan, the 135 TDI in the Golf Alltrack and the 140 TDI in the Tiguan and Passat Alltrack.
Motoring reports that Volkswagen Australia boss Michael Bartsch insisted the decision was nothing to do with Dieselgate, saying: “Any decision about dropping diesel here is not driven by the emissions issue; it is an issue of what we can get out of Germany.”
Bartsch instead claimed that the move was intended to simplify Volkswagen's line-up, although the introduction of WLTP has added fuel to the fire.
In addition to the diesel withdrawal, Volkswagen will no longer offer Australian buyers the 110 TSI petrol engine in the Golf and Tiguan.
Diesel engines were previously dropped from the Passat, while the Jetta was discontinued in right-hand drive form and the petrol-only Arteon replaced the CC, which had been offered with a diesel powertrain.
Aside from commercial vehicles, the Tiguan Allspace and new Touareg SUVs will be the only diesel Volkswagens available in Australia.
Sales of diesel vehicles Down Under have been increasing in recent years, claims Motoring, with oil-burners accounting for 22.2 percent of the national parc in 2017.
Elsewhere in the world, Volkswagen continues to offer diesel models across its range. Other manufacturers have turned against diesel, including Volvo, which launched its last car to be offered with a diesel, the V60, earlier this year. The new S60, due on sale in early in 2019, will be the first car in Volvo’s post-diesel era.