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  #1  
Old 07-04-2003, 12:46 AM
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Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: USA
Posts: 699
List of advantages and disadvantages of diesel cars.

Dear friends:

Please keep adding your comments to my short list of advantages and disadvantages. Thanks.

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Advantages:

1) Diesel cars can still run (no light) even when the battery is completely discharged and the alternator and/or voltage regulator) is gone. This applies only for old diesels that do not rely too much on electronics for control.

2) Diesel cars consume very little fuel when idling.

3) Diesel fuel is cheaper than gasoline (except in California)

4) Diesel engines have strong torques and so are used in big freightliners and ships.

5) Diesel cars' low HP and high torque engines seem to be better at prolonging the lifetime of automatic transmissions.


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Disadvantages:

1) Diesel cars can undergo the symtom of run-away engines if IP and related accessories do not work properly. (read LarryBible's recent experience of his daughter's 300D).

2) Diesel cars smell terrible when smoking and/or leaking diesel.

3) Diesel cars are usually a lot noiser than gasoline ones (except newer diesels)
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  #2  
Old 07-04-2003, 02:14 AM
sixto's Avatar
smoke gets in your eyes
 
Join Date: Jun 2000
Location: SF Bay Area
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Pro 6) Diesel cars aren't subject to smog checks in California.

Pro 7) Modern Diesels don't have a periodic tune up schedule.

Pro 8) People think you're different because you drive a Diesel.

Con 4) Not every gas station offers Diesel.

Con 5) You can't tell if it's time to change the engine oil by its opacity.

Con 6) People think you're different because you drive a Diesel.

I don't know where you refuel in Silicon Valley but everywhere I see the price of Diesel posted, it's lower than regular gasoline.

I think it's outside California that Diesel is more expensive.

Sixto
95 S420
91 300SE
87 300SDL
83 300SD
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  #3  
Old 07-04-2003, 03:00 AM
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Join Date: Apr 2000
Location: So. Cal
Posts: 4,430
Next time you come south to Temecula Sixto, pay attention to the diesel prices. Most locations have diesel priced about the same a midgrade gas ~$1.80 now.

BTW, I just noticed the '95 S420, when did you make that leap?
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  #4  
Old 07-04-2003, 03:03 AM
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algae grows in diesel if left for a while? does that one count?
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  #5  
Old 07-04-2003, 04:29 AM
sixto's Avatar
smoke gets in your eyes
 
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Leap? More like my wife pushed me into it We got it in early June. The SE's days are numbered. Maybe the SDL's too.

Sixto
95 S420
91 300SE
87 300SDL
83 300SD
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  #6  
Old 07-04-2003, 04:54 AM
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Location: San Francisco, CA
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Pros:

-Diesels get much better MPG ... and driving range on a tank of fuel (I can't believe someone hasn't mentioned this)

-It is rare that one can drive a diesel car through a full tank of fuel without getting out.

-they are truly power plants. They go and go. Built well and long-lived.

-Often diesels have turbos which enable them to blast by their gasoline counterparts on hills in higher elevations.

-truckers will often help diesel drivers.

-they are generally simpler than their gasoline counterparts.

-they become very satisfying cars to own. There is just something about driving a diesel car, especially for long distances.

Cons:

-Some models require valve adjustments.

-sometimes harder to start in colder climates
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  #7  
Old 07-04-2003, 08:02 AM
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Location: Clayton, NC
Posts: 490
Just expanding on a few things already said:

PRO:
Diesels will run forever and ever and....

Can be made to run on vegetable oil when all the dinosaur juice finally dries up.

Diesels don't always have more torque than an equivalent sized gas engine. The Diesel design (long stroke), however, allows for full torque at much lower rpm's and over the full rpm range. Gas engines reach peak at the top of rpm range (with more resulting wear in a heavy load situation).

Easier to avoid speeding tickets!

CON:
.........and ever and ever until rest of car falls apart.

Won't win any drag races (unless you happen to have one of the European CDI models) or you go up against UPS trucks.

Higher loads (with higher torque) are HARD on automatic trannys hence the only recent introduction of automatics in medium and heavy-duty trucks (wish my Kenworth had one!).

How many of you Diesel drivers suffer from "black tail-light syndrome" ?


Klaus.....
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  #8  
Old 07-04-2003, 12:05 PM
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Location: CA
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PRO:

BMW drivers no longer tail gate you.
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  #9  
Old 07-05-2003, 01:57 AM
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Join Date: Feb 2002
Location: Cleveland, OH
Posts: 349
Many of the above statements are true, but most are based on experience with older diesels. New diesels are relatively quiet, and quick. I constantly have to tell people, "by the way, this is a diesel"...

Pros:
- Far better fuel economy and range - I get 50mpg and 750miles per tank on my TDI. Who cares if there's no diesel at every station when you have 750 miles to find one? I also can go 10,000 miles between changes with great oil analysis results.
- Increased durability
- low maintenance
- Diesels usually DO make WAY more torque than gasoline cars with similar horsepower, and at a lower rpm.
- ability to run biodiesel with no modifications, which is renewable and low emissions
-you get funny looks from truckers and gas station attendants at the pump.
- Its fun when the attendant runs out in a fury to stop you from filling the 'wrong' fuel into your car

Cons:
- Not hot rods if that's your thing
- Increased emissions vs gas cars using straight #2 Diesel
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  #10  
Old 07-05-2003, 03:31 AM
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Location: Santa Monica, CA
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Pro: emergency fuel can be bought at any grocery store (Canola oil); and stored in your trunk safely (and you can fry dinner in it).
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  #11  
Old 07-05-2003, 07:53 AM
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Join Date: Feb 2003
Location: NC
Posts: 119
Pros:
Nobody wants to tailgate you.
Nobody wants to borrow your car.
Nobody will car jack you as you can chase them down on foot (85 on back diesels!)

Cons:
Black light syndrome (yes I get on my TD after long trips).
You must buy your diesel fuel were they sell alot of it or else you will get water in your tank.
You can't sneak in late at night as your wife will hear you pull in the driveway.
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  #12  
Old 07-05-2003, 10:29 AM
s500
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Quote:
Originally posted by Thomaspin
PRO:

BMW drivers no longer tail gate you.
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  #13  
Old 07-05-2003, 12:10 PM
atikovi
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PRO:

1) Doesn't run hot even when stuck in bumper to bumper traffic in 95F degree heat with the a/c on. (At least for a Suburban diesel)

2) Diesel cars are usually a lot noiser than gasoline ones? (Well at least my Suburban sounds like a REAL truck)
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