THE popularity of diesel-powered vehicles will continue to rise around Queensland as unleaded petrol becomes more expensive, RACQ researchers have predicted.
RACQ technical researcher John Ewing said Queensland families would turn to more fuel-efficient diesel vehicles during the petrol crisis.
"Diesel vehicles are becoming increasingly popular with Australian buyers, thanks to their fuel-frugal ways and their excellent drivability," he said.
"National sales figures for April reveal a 56% increase in diesel SUV sales to private buyers, compared to the same month last year. No doubt many of these will have found homes in Queensland garages."
Diesel has long been a popular choice for SUV buyers, and Federal Chamber of Automotive Industry figures confirm the trend has spread to all vehicle categories.
Mr Ewing said diesel cars were now considered attractive to the general public, after years of being confined to commercial or niche markets.
"Australian buyers have more diesel passenger car options in the market than ever before," he said.
"While diesel prices can be slightly higher or lower than ULP, fuel economy in diesel vehicles is generally better, meaning savings at the bowser."
Mr Ewing said the high purchase price of diesel vehicles, combined with services that were usually more expensive than other cars, could "potentially erode fuel savings."
Visit racq.com/runningcosts for more information on vehicle ownership costs.