Gas vs. Diesel in Light of Current Oil Prices

With gas prices so low, will driving a TDI Clean Diesel still save you money at the pump? Good question. Let’s see if some simple arithmetic can’t help provide us an answer.

gas-pump_100311665_l

We’ll start with diesel.

Current Diesel Prices:

55L/tank * $1.05/L = $57.75/tank of diesel

Normal Diesel Prices:

55L/tank * $1.35/L = $74.35/tank of diesel

Current oil prices result in a $16.60 savings per tank of diesel.

Now let’s look at gas.

Current Gas Prices:

55L/tank * $0.95/L = $52.25/tank of gas

Normal Gas Prices:

55L/tank * $1.25/L = $68.75/tank of gas

Current oil prices result in a $16.50 savings per tank of gas.

What do these fuel prices mean in dollars/year?

Again, we’ll start with diesel.

Yearly diesel costs at current prices:

TDI fuel economy = 5.5L/100km, which equals 1000km/tank

Average km/year for average Canadian driver = 20,000km

20,000km/1000km = 20 tanks of diesel/year

20 tanks * $57.75/tank = $1155/year for diesel at current fuel prices

Yearly diesel costs at normal prices:

20 tanks * $74.35/tank = $1487/year for diesel at current fuel prices

This same reasoning can be applied to gas:

Yearly gas costs at current prices:

Gas (1.8L Turbo) fuel economy = 7.2L/100km, which equals 764km/tank

20,000km/764km = 26 tanks of gas/year

26 tanks * $52.25/tank = $1358.50/year for gas at current fuel prices

Yearly gas costs at normal prices:

26 tanks * $68.75/tank = $1787.50/year for gas at normal fuel prices

So what does this all mean?

Well at the moment, the average, say, Golf TDI Diesel driver will save $203.50/year over the average Golf 1.8L Gas driver. When fuel prices return to normal—which they no doubt will—the TDI driver will save $300.50 over the 1.8L driver.

Said another way, diesel prices need to be 23.6% higher than gas prices (meaning ~30 cents normally, or ~22 cents currently) for the TDI driver to spend the same fuel money per year as the 1.8L gas driver. The usual spread in diesel and gas prices is 8%, meaning that even in light of low fuel prices, the TDI driver stands to save money over the gas driver for the foreseeable future. Exactly how much will vary depending on how many kilometers/year are driven: those who drive more 20,000km/year stand to save more than the numbers presented here, while those who drive less than 20,000km/year stand to save less.

tdi-golf-specialWeb

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s