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Is the 1.0 Turbo Engine the New Diesel?

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July 11, 2017
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With more and more manufacturers launching 1.0 Litre Turbo vehicles, Cars2 decided to explore whether this super economical engine has what it takes to compete on price, performance and panache…

In the last 12 months we’ve seen the release of numerous 1.0 litre turbo petrol cars across household names such as the Vauxhall Astra, Skoda Octavia, Honda Civic, Honda Jazz and Ford Focus.

For years diesel cars have been praised as the “greenest” option available and a much more economic car with respect to emissions and fuel consumption. However, following headlines regarding London potentially joining the list of major cities to ban diesel, it looks like car manufacturers have had to work hard to provide an alternative.

A new generation of energy efficient, turbo-powered, cleaner cars have been making their way onto the market. Many, boast impressive economy (miles per gallon), and are considerably cheaper upfront and in running costs in comparison to their bigger engine diesel counterparts.

The team at Cars2 took a close look at some of the contenders across our 3 manufacturers and put the 1.0 litre turbo-charged pocket-rockets to the test versus their “bigger brother” diesel equivalents. The infographic shows just how astonishingly good value for money some of the 1.0 litre turbos actually are.

For example, the SEAT Ateca SE diesel model is a 5 door 1.6 TDI car with a top speed of 114mph and 115 brake horsepower. At £22,595 it was the most expensive car that we compared to its 1.0 petrol turbo equivalent. The 1.0 TSI Ecomotive SE (also a 5 door) costs some £2,310 less upfront yet had the exact same top speed and brake horsepower.

Whilst the Ateca 1.6 Diesel won the fuel economy comparison over its petrol version, boasting a respectable 65.7MPG, the 1.0 litre wasn’t far behind at 54.3MPG. Furthermore the 1.0 litre petrol comes in £48 per month cheaper on a typical PCP arrangement, due to a £673 better residual value. It’s also classed in a lower insurance group, meaning lower premiums for the owner.

Cars2 calculated that although the diesel will save you £161 per year in fuel (assuming you drive 10,000 miles per year), overall the 1.0 litre turbo works out some £2,343 cheaper over 4 years on a typical PCP agreement based on the same annual mileage. Don’t forget both cars offer exactly the same performance!

It wasn’t all one sided, there were wins for diesel engines too. When we looked at the Hyundai i30 and Peugeot 208, for both models, on balance the diesel derivative won when we assessed price, value and performance.

An interesting result came from the battle between petrol and diesel versions of the popular Hyundai i20. At some £1,020 less in list price, the 1.0T GDI SE 5dr model surprisingly is 7mph faster at top speed and has 10BHP more than the 1.4 CRDI SE diesel equivalent, allowing it to go from 0 to 60MPH in 10.7s compared to 12.1s for the diesel. That extra speed and performance makes a big difference to the driving experience, and that attractive list price difference cancels out any fuel economy saving a diesel owner could hope to make in the first 4 years of ownership.

Overall, our research which pitted diesel and petrol cars against each other revealed 4 out of the 6 head-to-heads were won by petrol cars over their diesel equivalents,.

For full details, see the infographic below which compares:
– Hyundai i20 1.0t GDI SE vs. i20 1.4 CRDI SE
– Hyundai i30 1.0T GDI Blue Drive SE vs. i30 1.6 CRDI Blue Drive SE
– SEAT Ibiza 1.0 TSI 115 FR vs. 1.4 TDI 105 FR TECHNOLOGY
– SEAT Ateca 1.0 TSI Ecomotive SE vs. 1.6 TDI Ecomotive SE
– Peugeot 208 1.2 PureTech 110 Allure vs. 208 1.6 BlueHDI 100 Allure
– Peugeot 2008 1.2 PureTech 110 Allure vs. 2008 1.6 BlueHDI 100 Allure

Petrol Vs Diesel Infographic

Is The 1.0 Litre Turbo The New Diesel? – An infographic by the team at Cars2.

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