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Mercedes-Benz might be the next German automaker to stop offering diesel engines in the U.S.
Like BMW earlier this year, Mercedes is experiencing a delay in diesel certifications in the U.S. as a result of more rigorous testing procedures by the EPA following Volkswagen’s diesel emissions scandal. Although the automaker is currently working to get certification on a limited number of diesel models, it may not endure the process again in the future. According to Matthias Luehrs, vice president of sales and product management for Mercedes-Benz Cars, the German automaker is conducting market research on U.S. diesel demand to help guide its direction.
“We have to look at that and see whether it makes sense to offer diesels in the future,” he said during an interview at the 2016 L.A. Auto Show. “We have not come to a conclusion but we obviously always tend to develop cars and offer vehicles according to customers’ demands.”
He added that dropping diesel offerings in the U.S. altogether “is a theoretical option,” adding that demand for diesels in North America has been low “and is still lowering” for cars and crossovers. As for the certifications, it is currently waiting for, the company is confident that in most of the cases it will be approved. Its current priority is receiving EPA certification for the GLS350d, which uses a V6 diesel engine. Mercedes is also seeking certification for at least four diesel models in the U.S., including the GLS, GLC, GLE and C-Class sedan.