I bought a 2008 Volkswagon Jetta turbo diesel a few months ago and have been very impressed with it so far. This is the first diesel powered car that i've owned and i doubt that i would buy a petrol powered car again from now on. With so much torque in the engine, the car just pulls along effortlessly everywhere. The fuel economy is amazing - i get over 900km's per tank for city driving and over 1100km's for highway driving from a 55 litre fuel tank.
It's very comfortable and roomy and has a massive boot. I'm 6' tall or 183cm's and have plenty of room and there's plenty of leg room behind me for the back seat passengers.
My one's fitted with the DSG gearbox (Direct Shift Gearbox) but you can get them in 6 speed manual gearboxes as well.
I hired a Audi A4, an 6 speed wagon in Germany over xmas for 3 weeks, it was I think 2L diesel, very hard to find out what size the engine was as everything in German. They have same engine as Jetta and yes its an amazing engine. We were getting 4.5 to 5.5L/100km. Crusing along major roads usually in 5th gear and it was in its prime. And yes one trip we got 1000km on the tank and partly driving in snow in mountains. It seemed to be happy also at 140-150 on auto bahn but thats when the juice consumption starts to rise. it takes a bit og getting used to having the engine stop when you stop which is part of the fuel saving operation. It restarts automatically when you place your foot on the clutch.
A friend owned a Jetta in Canada and loved the engine also. He once cooked it at night with a water leak, engine was glowing red. Let it cool, refilled water and never missed a beat again.
My car in UAE is 2011 Toyota Aurion V6 (Aussie made), top of range and alot cheaper than in Aussie. Diesel here is nearly same as Aussie prices, but petrol is 45c/L, hence noone drives a diesel. This car for the price is amazing. 300HP 6 spd auto. At 140 it pulls hard to 180. Pulling out from petrol station onto hwy and before end of off ramp its at 140-150 without trying. Handles very well, although being front wheel drive power hard off lights and she pulls hard to right. Even Emiraties like the car and know it for its power and appearance and often have one or American version Avalon until they can afford their BMW 7 series or X5. Only thing I don't like on Aurion is the dash and interior colour trim is a bit plain. Black would be a nice option with the leather trim.
When headed back to Aus, the fuel economy of the Audi will make us look at a diesel sedan but probably not an Audi as 2nd price will be improtant. Only issue with a diesel is that when they go wrong, they do it in style. Recon head for my Hilux, $2500 in 2004. Oil change that doesn't leave much change from $50 for a filter, meanwhile my wife's Fairmont standard Z4(?) oil cartridge are $5 and they don't even bother to place them in a box. the wife loves her Fairmonts, and I like to have one Aussie made car in garage. Might be an Aurion when we go home with the other being a 4x4. What we liked about the Fairmont was you picked up a 3 year odl $45,000 car ex lease for 1/3 the price and you had a large car to pull the boat, great for long drives and cheap and easy on parts and very reliable.
Of the Aussie made cars, people say they are rubbish, but the Toyota Camry/Aurion are very popular in middle east because of quality, reliability and price and in general Toyota's are well loved in Middle east. Most of Dubai's taxis are Camry's. Go to Oman, all the dealers are small until you see Toyota, its huge. Toyota Dubai was selling 45 cars/saleman/mth in 2009 and they have 20 sales people. Nissan is what you buy if you cannot afford a Toyota.
V8 Commodore's are also very popular in Middle east (and if I had my time again may have bought a 2nd hand one) because of their HP, style and price. You see plenty of older ones and many are rebaged from Chev back to Aussie Holden Commodore trim.
Falcon's, unfortunately for Australia not exported and probably this tells the future for production.