Diesel or Gas?


Asked by Mar 03, 2016 at 01:48 PM about the 2016 Subaru Outback 2.5i Limited

Question type: General

Does it make economic sense to choose a diesel engine over gasoline?  
Subaru does make a diesel engine for Asia and it may come to the USA in the
future?  After all,  the Mercedes Benz Sprinter diesel engine is widely available
for vehicles.  The big question is whether the additional price justifies the fuel
savings??  And,  what about longer term durability that's supposed to be
afforded by diesel engines?  Some people think that diesel engines can go three
times further than a gasoline engine.

2 Answers


Yes, diesel engines are built to be more durable, provide better fuel economy but are given a bad wrap. Back in the day, Diesel engines here in the US and in other autos lacked refinement. Americans hated them because they smelled bad, and were loud. Europeans are not so frivolous and realized a Diesel VW Rabbit could go 500k miles on one engine and get 45-50mpg doing it. Nowadays there are so many advances that barely make the "auditory" issues noticeable. The introduction of emission standards in 1996 toned down the smell, better engineering and more sound dampening materials quiet the engine noise, and last but not least, you can buy diesel fuel everywhere you can purchase regular gasoline. I recently took a trip to the UK and my friend who lives there owned a diesel Ford Focus. It was a blast to drive and got amazing gas mileage (Gas was close to $12 a gallon). Go with the diesel you won't be sorry. Best of luck.


sixfootsix_car_guy- thank you! We're thinking about getting a Sprinter 3500 dual rear wheels, class B motorhome with a 3.0 V6 diesel engine. It gets 17 to 18 MPG despite the fact that it weighs some 13,000 pounds. There are a number of models made by Roadtrek, Airstream, etc. My only concern was how much maintenance these vehicles would require. Sounds like from your answer that it's a much better option than gas. And, yes, today's diesel engines are much quieter. Could possibly be quieter than the gasoline equivalent and certainly has plenty of torque. The new MBZ engines use DEF and don't have the problem that VW ran into. I remember the old VW Rabbit Diesel and it was very noisy.

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