As I walked into the massive display room of Cobo Hall, the first car that grabbed my attention was the equally massive Audi R10 diesel powered race car. One local columnist and amateur race car driver, Henry Payne, stated in the Detroit News that this competitor is "the most significant car in the North American International Auto Show."
And significant it is! In June 2006, the diesel powered Audi R10 won the world's prize competition, the 24 Hours of Le Mans. As Payne noted, "it became the first non-gasoline powered car in the 74-year history of the legendary French competition to finish first!
Payne discusses the pluses of gasoline versus diesel: "Gasoline has dominated the auto fuel market because it is superior in energy content, efficiency, availability and price. A true alternative must compete with it on every front."
"The R10 was consistently faster," wrote Autoweek magazine. "What's more, it was going farther on a tank of fuel. Ninety liters (about 24 gallons) of diesel were good for 15 laps of the 8.48-mile track; 90 liters of gasoline were good for just 13 laps."
Could it be the case that the R-10's unprecedented achievement confirms that diesel power is the only viable alternative for the foreseeable future?
Do you think that the possibility exists for future diesel powered high-performance Corvettes?