Page 1 of 16 123411 ... LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 157
  1. #1
    Veteran Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2004
    Posts
    2,273
    Location
    western NC
    Tractor
    JD 2320; 4520

    Default Why Diesel???

    Fellow Posters:

    I was in one of my rare objective moods today and pondered this thought for those that own and use pickup trucks daily. I am not speaking of those who use medium or heavy duty trucks, but rather those of us who might be using a 3/4 ton or one ton truck and doing so heavy towing, etc., but mainly also use our trucks as daily drivers and haulers, but perhaps do not tow daily. Is the diesel worth it??? Why would a diesel have an advantage here??? My question is sparked by going with my friend today to test drive a Toyota Tundra. I must say for a half ton truck, it was a really nice vehicle. There were some aspects about the trimwork, etc., I did not like that much, but for driveability and performance, it seemed really top notch. This made me research "why diesel???" This past April I bought a 2008 King Ranch diesel Ford. It retailed at the time for nearly $60,000. My friend, so thereafter, bought a GMC Duramax LTZ, retailing for over $53,000. We both have been most-satisfied with our trucks. I have assorted friends who have purchased or looked at Dodges, all of which were slightly north or south of $50,000. The Toyota, fully spec'd was: $41,000 and was selling for $34,000 with rebates. My Ford gets about 17 mpg on highway empty and about 12 towing my roughly 9000 pound load; my friend's GMC, roughly the same. The Toyota was rated for 14 and 18 for MPG and has a rated towing capacity only 2500 pounds less than mine and my friend's truck. I have always though I was buying diesel in part due to resale and in part, longevity but is this really true?? My dad is kindly letting me borrow his 2001 F150 two wheel drive truck to run short errands in a drive to work right now. It has 206,500 miles on it and literally--aside from some creaks in the door facings, runs like new. Burns no oil and gets over 18 on the highway. With the new particulate filters, can we say for sure the diesel now outlives a solid gasoline engine??? Is the fuel economy really that much better?? Is it at all?? I recently looked at an article which tested examples of the "Big Three in diesel and gasoline models--most in 3/4 configuration, and half ton. The Toyota was included in half ton. The summary is that the diesels all performed similarly, with the Chevy accelerated both empty and loaded slightly quicker than the Ford or Dodge, but all three were very close. The Ford V10 blew away the gas powered field in the 3/4 size, and came VERY close to matching both the empty and loaded performance of the diesels, despite making only 462 pound feet of torque, v. all the diesels' 650++. In the half ton, the Toyota walked over the field and was actually the fastest overall even pulling a 10,300 pound load, which is--in essence--its max towing. It also turned in by a slim margin, the best fuel economy in the test of both diesels and gas engines. This prompted me to say, "Are all we diesel pickup owners wasting our money buying diesels?" Why is it that a half ton truck with "only" 401 pound feet of torque can run away, both empty and loaded from three diesels, each making over 650 pound feet of torque and with very good transmissions/axle ratios. Why is it that a V10 Ford gas engine can nearly match the performance of all three diesels, while making 362 hp and in the mid 400's in torque, while carrying a similar chassis weight?? Inquiring minds want to know. Please do not misunderstand me, I love my diesel and my good friend would fight the devil himself for his truck, but are we really getting an advantage in buying diesel, especially with fuel costs as they are?? I was curious to hear from the group on this one.

    John M

  2. #2
    Platinum Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Posts
    564
    Location
    NE Texas
    Tractor
    Mahindra 5005DI

    Default Re: Why Diesel???

    Honestly, in my case, the diesel is probably not worth it. Of course, I also LIKE the 6.5TD chevy. I figure it is the same reason we don't all drive plain drab econoboxes even though they may be the prudent choice. I know there will be plenty of posters who never even crank their trucks unless they have at least 12,000# behind them. But MY real reason for diesel (and I have never owned a gas burning pickup) is that they are different. I love the smell of diesel exhaust and the fact that you have no doubt whether or not they are running (but the late model diesels are quickly doing away with that feature). I like to listen to the turbo spool up. I like the injector knock on the big ones and the sewing machine sounds emanating from the small ones.
    Looking at pure economics, a gasser would probably do me just fine. But... this is America, I am an individual, and I can and have the wherewithall to choose.
    Let the flaming commence!
    Can't do what I NEED to do for doing what I HAVE to do...WANT to do? what's that?

  3. #3
    Super Member mjncad's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Posts
    5,114
    Location
    In the civilized First World
    Tractor
    A couple

    Default Re: Why Diesel???

    My 2-cents for what its worth.

    I have a 1999 F-250 Super Duty with a V-10, 5-speed manual, and 4.11 limited slip differential. I use my truck; but do not abuse it. At the time I ordered it, I could not justify the extra $3,500 for the diesel when the V-10 cost me about $335; although I could have afforded the diesel. Since I knew I wasn't going to use the truck as a daily driver, let alone tow on a regular basis; the V-10 was the right compromise for me. I expected to get 10MPG with it; but I average 13.5MPG. However, if I was going to use the truck daily and/or tow a trailer on a regular basis, I would have bought the diesel no questions asked. To date the truck has done everything I've wanted it to do. Would I do things differently if I were to order it again? Sure; but I think I've got a truck that suits my needs without letting my testosterone levels dictate what I should buy.

    Flash forward to today, and I'm noticing a lot more V-10 Super Duty's in my area now. I suspect that individuals and companies are finding that the tighter pollution controls on today's diesels impacting fuel economy makes the V-10 look more attractive. I don't know what the diesel cost premium is over the V-10 now; but I think many people are finding they can't recoup the diesel's extra cost within the expected service life of the truck. The V-10 may not have the HP and torque of the diesel; but if the 80-20 rule applies, people are finding out that the V-10 serves their needs 80% of the time.

    Like anything, there are pros and cons to any power-train combination out there.
    Paraphrasing Douglas Adams - So long and thanks for all the bacon.

  4. #4
    Gold Member firedog's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Posts
    453
    Location
    Southeast Texas
    Tractor
    FarmTrac 300DTC

    Default Re: Why Diesel???

    Agreed, there are some things to be considered when comparing the diesel vs gas.
    Just from fuel economics my cummins has paid for itself. (based on 20mpg for the cummins & 17 mpg for the 5.9 gas; the 3 mpg difference over 220K miles uses an additional 1700 gals @ ~3.00/gal). I'm not sure what the 5.9 gas gets loaded, but I've heard reports of 8-10 mpg. My cummins gets 13-14 pulling around 10K.

    As far as longevity, the gassers have come quite a long ways in the last several years, as John M. noted. but it's not uncommon for diesels to last 500K miles before overhauls. (the KW has around 350K and still runs strong)

    What else.........sounds better, smells better, outpulls, outlast, and chip a gasser for an extra 20hp, but chip a diesel for an extra 160hp and torque out the wazoo. (plus a guy in a diesel just naturally looks better)

    Dang, I'm opinionated!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    Last edited by firedog; 09-25-2007 at 07:55 AM.
    AUDENTES FORTUNA JUVAT


    Farmtrac 300DTC w/FEL, BB, 5' RC, 6' rake, bucket grapple & forks,
    20+5 GN deckover, 09' Dodge 2500 4X4

  5. #5
    Super Star Member Egon's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2001
    Posts
    18,331
    Location
    Nova Scotia, Canada

    Default Re: Why Diesel???

    Another question of dubious answerability!

    Running gear on both types wears out the same. The diesel may have the longevity edge for engine durability.

    I'd go with a diesel for a working truck that's in a high mileage type hauling/pulling job. Gasser will do nicely for a daily driver.

    Our diesel was purchased for pulling a trailer to move across Canada and haul a camper. It also is used to haul the trailer back and forth to the farm. My personal opinionated opinion is that it was the right choice. It is an anemic type with only 185 HP and 420 Ft. Pounds of torque ahead of terrible auto that still needs to break down. Course it's only got 200,000 Kil. on it. As a daily driver the fuel mileage is very good.
    Egon
    50 years behind the times
    Livin in a
    Worn out skin bag filled with rattlin bones

  6. #6
    Elite Member SnowRidge's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2003
    Posts
    3,091
    Location
    East Tennessee
    Tractor
    Power Trac PT-425 / Branson 3520

    Default Re: Why Diesel???

    I bought diesel because I couldn't find a gas powered truck I liked that could tow what I need to tow now and then that didn't get horrible gas mileage.

    Besides, I like diesels.

  7. #7
    Platinum Member Spiveyman's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Posts
    709
    Location
    Central KY
    Tractor
    Ford 6610 II

    Default Re: Why Diesel???

    Today I'm driving a 2001 F-150 Supercrew and I love it, however, the very second that I can figure out a way to justify it to my wife, I'm getting a F350 diesel dually, or maybe F450.

    At the moment I use my truck for driving to work, running around and a little bit of hauling cattle. Smaller loads, however I'm hoping those loads will become more frequent and larger. My business partner has a Dodge 3500 diesel dually and he bought one of those hi performance chips that boosts his fuel economy and power and pours the black smoke out every time he stomps on the fuel. I think the black smoke is the real reason he went for it. Sure, I think the big gas engines, especially that V10 would to the job, and these trucks are lasting a lot longer, but for me, like hudr and firedog, the diesel is a man thing. The sound, the smell, the vibration...

    Something else to consider is the bio-diesel option. It probably won't matter in the life span we're talking about, but I read where some dude was basically running his vehicle on road kill and another who was using the cooking oil from fast food places and essentially getting free fuel. Granted the dude smelled like french fries instead of deisel fuel, but the versatility of the fuels given the instability of the oil on the planet these days aint a bad option to have on hand.

    Mostly it's the black smoke and the sound though. The other debating point is the need for a dually. I was talking to my business partner about that this weekend too. I don't know how critical it is. I've seen some regular trucks pulling some hoss loads, but the dually also just looks meaner, besides the side-to-side stability and braking power it adds.
    "Timing has a lot to do with the outcome of a rain dance."

    "No one but cattle know why they stampede... and they ain't talkin'."

    "It doesn't matter how big a ranch ya' own, or how many cows ya' brand, the size of your funeral is still gonna to depend on the weather."

  8. #8
    Veteran Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2004
    Posts
    2,273
    Location
    western NC
    Tractor
    JD 2320; 4520

    Default Re: Why Diesel???

    These are all super points now, and please know, I am also a diesel owner and really like my diesel truck. But, I suppose my logic for the question is why? Are we really getting any advantage to buying diesel? One of my clinic patients is the chief light truck salesperson for our local Ford dealer. They sell a lot of trucks, probably among the larger truck sales dealers in the USA. He says diesels outsell gas trucks in the Ford brand 250 and up by a 3-1 margin. From my limited reading, this seems to be similar to the nationwide average. This has not, according to him, appreciably dropped since the 2007 emissions standards came out. This is despite diesel engines now being a $7000+ option v. equivalent gas (retail). I, like many others, went diesel again when I bought and am overall quite happy with my decision. I do, though, wonder whether it really makes sense. My opinion is this class of truck is that the Cummins engine in the Dodge truck has the longest lifespan when well-maintained, yet is a million mile engine really worth it in a 2500 level truck. Our neighbor just "junked" his 7.3L Ford 350 dually last month. He pulls cross country loads of 10000-15000 pounds. The truck had about 380,000 miles on it. The engine was fine, but the transmission, rear axle and assorted components were worn out and needing replacement. I know he tows, and thusly warrants a diesel, but does having diesel here really make much difference?? I suppose also the thrust of my question revolves around my perception of diesels being powerhouse motors. As we know, over the past few years the Big Three has gradually ramped up the power on their diesel engines. These trucks now approach big rig torque and horsepower. I realize one can juice up any of these trucks and get big HP but in the current era of computer control and the death penalty for anyone who does this with a post-emissions diesel, why are they being matched in performance by gasoline-engined trucks??? I have had a V10 Ford before and the difference when I traded for a 7.3L diesel was at the time substantial. Now, it seems based on the numbers I have seen, to have vanished. Not just between it and the new 6.4L Ford, but ALL the diesels. And why is a one half ton Toyota with 60% the torque of any of these trucks able to outrun them pulling 10,000 pounds?? I find this to make little sense.

    John M

  9. #9
    Platinum Member
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Posts
    579
    Location
    West Texas
    Tractor
    JD 5325 JD 5203 JD 2320 LT 133

    Default Re: Why Diesel???

    I just traded my 03 F250 5.4 for a 08 F350 V-10. I did not want to spend 50K on a new vehicle. With the current Ford rebates I bot the new F350 in XL package, 2WD, 6 speed for 24,300 before sales tax and before my trade in. I can live with that. I'll be out about 19,00 cash and will have no car payment.

    Ford priced the diesel at about 6K, the V10 cost me 458 bucks. I have reports that the V-10 is no worse than the 5.4 on gas. I get from 15-16 highway from my 5.4 and have never bothered with the mileage when towing.

    I bought the gas even though I expect to keep the truck for 10 years because I use it both for towing and highway driving and did not want to pay the high price of oil changes for the diesel nor pay for the motor itself.

    I have 100,000 miles on my truck. It has been a good one and has given me satisfactory performance. However, I decided I wanted more oomph towing and the shop foreman at the Ford dealership recommended the V10 as an alternative for the diesel. He said if I could live with the 5.4, I would really like the V-10.

    I ordered it since one cannot find a bare bones truck on the lot and it should be here in a few days. I will find out whether the advice I received was good advice.

    As a side note, I told the Ford salesman that there are times when I would really like the 4WD, but using the 80-20 rule mentioned above (really 99-1 for me) I just wanted the 2WD. He said most of his customers were town people who didn't need a truck at all but bought the $55000 4WD diesels. Guess its what turns your crank.

  10. #10
    Super Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2000
    Posts
    6,595

    Default Re: Why Diesel???

    John M.

    There are more blurred lines coming up soon too. Rumor has it that gas engines will soon be direct injected at the same high pressures that diesels are (22-24,000 psi) and that will increase power, reduce emissions, etc. They will be able to mimic diesel fuel burn characteristics by injecting fuel into the already firing mixture to increase pressure while the piston is moving down. Think huge increases in torque available when needed.

    From some of your questions, I am assuming that you don't tow much or often and have bought the truck for more personal reasons than for requirements. That's OK! I can tell you that a gas engine loses power at higher elevations to the tune of about 10% per 5000 ft. A turbo diesel will only lose about 1% in that same 5000ft. So going across mountains or living in them, gives the nod to the diesel. The diesel will also run cooler under high loads than a gas engine and can run at or near maximum output for extended periods. A diesel also has it's torque peak at 1600-1800 rpm and HP peaks in the 2500 rpm range. The Tundra/Titan and other small gas truck engines have thier torque peak at 4-4500 rpm's and HP peak in the 5000-5500 rpm range.

    What's that mean? Just that a diesel pulling 12,000 trailer up a long 6% grade can do it in OD, where the gas engine will need to drop to 1:1 or even 3rd or 2nd gear and spin the engine up to 5000+ rpm's. They will still tow the weight and will still keep speed up in most cases, but the engine will really be humming. The gas engine trucks also hunt for gears on inclines more as they have to drop gears to keep speed up and most people don't like a vehicle doing that.

    I can attest that my YR 2000 silverado 1500 with 5.3L engine had the power to tow to it's 9500# rating, but it had to drop gears often. It also got 10 mpg. (14mpg with the same load using the diesel). It also didn't have the suspension / brakes to deal with the load and inspire confidence. Sway, bounce, shake and shimmy were a common occurance in the 1500 where the 2500 has none of that.

    I do think that the days of cheaper diesel fuel, cheap diesel engines, very long lived / low repair costs and near double milage are gone. The very high pressure injections systems are fragile and expensive, costing thousands to swap injectors. The emission compliance requireing buring fuel to save the planet is costing millions of barrels of fuel to be spent. (FYI - volcanoe's put out over 100x the sulfer dioxide of all vehicles + industry in the USA).


    I have not seen the article showing the Tundra able to out pull any of the diesels. Can you point to where that is? I'd like to read about it, thanks.

    jb

Page 1 of 16 123411 ... LastLast

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  
© 2014 TractorByNet.com. TractorByNet is a registered trademark of IMC Digital Universe, Inc. Other trademarks on this page are the property of their respective owners.