If you’re planning on purchasing a vehicle soon, have you considered a diesel? Many people don’t even think about this being an option since most of the vehicles are gasoline-powered, with electric becoming more common. Diesel fuel has never completely shaken the negative reputation it earned back in the day (e.g., when it was terrible for the environment and made for sluggish and noisy vehicles). However, these days, diesel powertrains are much more user- and environmentally-friendly than their earliest predecessors — and even superior to their gasoline counterparts, in some respects. When considering a diesel, ask yourself these questions:
Will I Be Doing More Highway or City Driving?
If you do a lot of highway driving, opting for diesel will probably save you the most money on fuel. Unlike diesel, hybrids are designed to recharge their batteries through the process of regenerative braking, which makes them most fuel-efficient during in-town driving. Some modern diesel cars get over 45 mpg on the highway. However, the same cars may get less than 30 mpg in the city — still, not terrible.
What’s More Economical?
Surprisingly, choosing a modern diesel over an equivalent gasoline-powered vehicle can enhance gas mileage by more than 20%, especially on the highway versus in the city. So, although diesel fuel may often cost more at the pump, the better fuel economy is likely to save you more money overall than driving a similar gasoline model.
How Do I Feel About Power?
Do you like to be the first one to drive away from a red traffic light? A diesel car can help. It’ll give you better-than-average acceleration from a stop, even more so by adding diesel performance parts. So, where a gasoline engine has to be revved high to get the optimal acceleration, diesel engines don’t. Some people enjoy driving a diesel because even at lower speeds, they perform as if they’re more powerful than they actually are.
Horsepower or Torque?
A diesel engine will normally have more torque than one powered by gasoline. However, its gasoline counterpart will have more horsepower. Torque simply means how much work an engine can do. If you want a truck that has a better towing capability, a diesel powertrain will be much better than an equivalent gasoline truck. Heavy-duty trucks normally have diesel engines for this reason.
Diesel engines have long been thought to be more reliable than gasoline engines. However, there’s really no conclusive evidence that one is more reliable than the other. So, when purchasing a vehicle, the decision really comes down to how you plan to use it and your preferences for how it rides.