Mazda's CEO says that despite all the negative press around Volkswagen's scandal and increasingly stringent emissions standards, the Japanese automaker still plans to offer a diesel engine to American buyers.
"We are not giving up," CEO Masamichi Kogai told reporters earlier this month, according to industry journal Automotive News. "We have a timeline."
Mazda initially announced that it would sell a version of its largely Euro-centric Skyactiv-D powertrain in its Mazda6 midsize sedan several years ago, but the automaker later backed off of those statements over difficulty certifying a diesel for all 50 states.
The automaker's official line is that the emissions standards would require too great of a reduction in performance for the sport-oriented brand. Its next-generation Skyactiv powertrains and platforms, called simply Skyactiv 2, are designed to address many of those concerns.
Just when Mazda will sell a diesel here remains up for considerable debate, however. Increased emissions standards go into effect in the next couple of years, which is right about the timeline Mazda has in mind for the next Skyactiv lineup.
For now, Mazda continues to be focused on improving efficiency for its gas motors. Mazda's most efficient model currently on offer is the 34 mpg combined Mazda3, which was a headline-grabbing number at the model's late 2013 unveiling but has been bested by a few rivals since—most notably, the Honda Civic, Ford Focus, and Chevrolet Cruze.