Gas Prices on the Rise, Diesel a Deal

By David Thomas  on May 13, 2009

Memorial Day and the summer travel season are fast approaching, which means gas prices are on the rise again. People who were happy to see $2 gas earlier this year are now greeted by a national average of $2.27 for a gallon of regular.

The price of gas has climbed 16 cents in just a week, 22 cents in a month. The increase is most likely tied to the rising price of oil in recent weeks. There's also the annual switch over to a higher blend of ethanol for warm weather months.

The good news is the average price of diesel fuel hasn’t risen as sharply as gas prices. The national average for a gallon of diesel is $2.28, up only 3 cents from a week ago and 1 cent higher than a month ago. Modern diesel cars like the VW Jetta TDI get roughly 30% better gas mileage than their standard gasoline counterparts.

And to make everybody feel better, analysts do not expect a repeat of last year's $4 gas prices when we hit an all-time high on July 17,2008 for both regular unleaded — $4.11 — and diesel — $4.84.

AAA Daily Fuel Gauge Report

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Managing Editor David Thomas has a thing for wagons and owns a 2010 Subaru Outback and a 2005 Volkswagen Passat wagon.  Email David