The Diesel Decision

Dec 2, 2009

As a performance professional, customers come to you looking for advice. At times, those questions may even involve their next new vehicle purchase.

If a client asks for a recommendation on what his or her next truck should be, that’s a great sign-it most likely means they’ll be heading straight to you when it comes time to upgrade and accessorize.

When answering, chances are some of your own personal experiences and preferences will come into play. But there are also some basic guidelines that will help your customer make an informed buying decision-particularly when it comes to the all-important decision of gas versus diesel.

The Case for Diesel

As a diesel warehouse, you know what we at Premier Performance Products would recommend. But there are some basic outlines for how you can help your customers make an informed decision that’s ultimately right for them.

Here’s how you might start:

“So, you want to buy a truck. That’s great! Now, there are many questions that need to be answered before you are ready to make that purchase. Questions like what brand of truck, what engine, what color and, most importantly, gas or diesel.”

We can’t say whether diesel is better or vice versa, because it all depends on what the customer wants it for. If they just need something to run around in with good gas mileage, then gas is probably better.

But, if they plan on hauling boats, trailers, backhoes or other heavyweights, then we’d recommend getting a diesel. The facts show that diesels generally excel in three areas: performance, longevity and cost.

Again, if they want to get a truck with towing power, then they probably need a diesel. Diesels generally get 650 foot-pounds of torque at 1,600 rpms, while gas trucks might get 350-400 foot-pounds of torque at 2,500 rpms or higher.

This means that uphill towing is a breeze in a diesel, compared to its gas counterpart. When towing with a diesel, set the cruise control and don’t worry about a thing. The driver won’t be downshifting, up-shifting, listening to the truck search for gears or worrying about transmission temperatures climbing too high.

Diesels are able to tow more. Pack up the kids, put the four-wheeler in the back, hook up the trailer and then hook up the boat, too. With a diesel there is no need to take two trucks and make a family convoy. One diesel truck can handle it all.

Diesel owners also see 40- to 70-percent better fuel economy when towing over a gas truck, and 25 percent better fuel economy when they are not towing.

And, for clients that want a diesel but will only be towing a small boat or trailer and don’t need a three-quarter- or 1-ton pickup, help is on the way. Half-ton diesels are scheduled to enter the marketplace in 2010.

Staying Power

Besides power and towing ability, diesel pickups are one of the longest-lasting vehicles on the road. Diesels are made to work.

If you just want to drive a truck for 100,000 miles and then get rid of it, then you probably want a gas truck. But if you want a truck that will last well over 200,000 miles with minimal maintenance, then you want a diesel. (Remember, it is always recommended to use a fuel additive to increase that longevity!)

Upfront, diesels are more expensive, but you’ll gain that back over the coming years in fuel and maintenance savings. Diesels generally need an oil change every 10,000 to 15,000 miles, unlike a gas truck that needs its oil changed every 3,000 to 7,000 miles-two to three times as often.

Diesels also have a higher resale value than gas trucks, which helps you get your money back.

It used to be that diesels were noisy and smelly, but with new injection systems and emission regulation, noisy and smelly are things of the past. Technology is always changing and diesels are right in the middle of that change.

So, the next time a customer asks about purchasing a new truck, you can make a case for it being a diesel.