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Ram V10 vs Diesel Engine Choice

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There have been periodic V10 vs. diesel wars on the mail lists.
Worthwhile comments from those exchanges will be included here.

Date: Thu, 01 Apr 1999 10:53:04 -0600
From: Stephen Huyssoon <huyssoons@advancia.com>
Subject: Re: DiRT: V10 -vrs- Desil, whats the truth

I have been driving a 99 2500 Ram with the Cummins 24 valve. It is a magnificent machine.
Using what I have learned of how the diesel engine works, how a gasoline engine works, my experience with both, and what I have learned of my truck, I suggest to you that the diesel is a better and finer engine in all ways except

        (1) The Cummins 5.9 liter is a very heavy engine.
        (2) The thing is a noisy beast (which I like myself, it is such a animal).
        (3) If you want the maximum acceleration you can get, the V10 will give you more.

Also, and this is clear if you study it, the gasoline engine is no longer an engine that should be manufactured.  It is not clean enough.  It should be thrown away or completely redesigned.  That is, the modern gasoline engine isn't modern, and requires *qualitative* change, not more tweaking.

Anyway, go and test drive each.

Also, if you decide to go with the diesel, I suggest getting a 4wd for the full front axle (the diesel is heavy) and why not go for the 3500?  Then you will get the heaviest equipment, and this is suitable for such a MONSTER BEAST TANK ENGINE GOD I LOVE IT.

My ONLY regrets I have concerning my 2500 is that I didn't get a 3500 with 4WD.  I mean, I spent so much money anyhow.


Date: Thu, 01 Apr 1999 14:26:31 PST
From: "Casey Vandor" <cvandor@hotmail.com>
Subject: DiRT: V10 vs diesel

I hate to say this, but there is no right answer here.  It all comes to personal driving habits, need, wants, on and on and on.  If you *need* the awesome power availabe with the Cummins, get it.  It will pull better than the 8.0L Not trying to start a flame war here, but if you take two identical trucks except one w/ a cummins and one w/ a v-10, load em up with a nice big trailer, then try and climb a long hill, the v-10 just cannot compete with the I-6.  Plus the I-6 is a much better design IMHO over any v-8.  I have seen some monster build ups on cummins to. A shop in Ketchikan, AK ( pacific engine repair or something like that) had a torque curve on a built cummins, 1300 lb.ft. of torque, 750+ hp, problem was, none of the drivetrain could handle it...  SOrry to be longwinded here, but the engine choice is something we can't answer, it comes down to what you need the truck for.

Casey Vandor
Home Page  http://members.tripod.com/CaseyV/
Note: Joe has owned both.

Subject:  Re: DiRT: V10 -vrs- Desil, whats the truth
Date:      Fri, 2 Apr 1999 01:07:12 EST
From:     Drdonnelly@aol.com

On RTML we had periodic V10 vs. diesel wars...some of us loved it and others were disgusted.  I kept a few of the posts, but the point for you is perhaps summarized this way:

  1. stock for stock at sea level and not towing, the V10 may be quicker;
  2. towing especially in the mountains, the diesel is better, and loses very little hp with altitude unlike normally aspirated engines such as the V10;
  3. the diesel is way overengineered for great durability, even when hopped up;
  4. hopping up the diesel costs much less and gives more of a gain than the gas engines;
  5. resale value offsets much of the diesel option cost, and when you have say 80,000 miles on it, the buyer looks on the gas rig as worn out and the diesel as just broken in;
  6. the diesel will get between 50% and 100% better fuel mileage and needs very little maintenance, although it does use more oil at the change intervals (11 vs. 7 qt).

Date: Fri, 2 Apr 1999 07:22:53 -0800
From: "Patterson, Thomas J." <tjpatter@spawar.navy.mil>
Subject: RE: DiRT: V10 -vrs- Desil, whats the truth  researched response ( long)

As for me I've driven a 97 2500 V10 auto 4X2, a 96, 97, 98 12v Diesel, and my current truck.  All of them were unloaded and relatively short in duration except for my truck.  The V10 accelerated like crazy and I thought "this motor will drink gas and get me in trouble".  The Diesels accelerate pretty good considering what they are and I'm happy with mine and the mileage is good (approx 19 in city).  My previous truck was a gas F250 4X4 that got 10 MPG no matter what you did,  up hill, down hill, ac on , ac off, empty, loaded, fast, slow, and if you looked at it cross it would burn 2 gallons sitting in the driveway just to spite you.  Now that I have the Diesel driving distances don't make me think "Hmmm, pulling out the driveway that's a gallon, Ohh Noo a red stop light that's gonna cost me getting started from a stop again........

I guess you'll just have to weigh the goods and bads of each. Diesel Bad, expensive, heavy, kinda slow, noisy, causes everyone around you to immediately die from cancer.  Diesel good, good on fuel, runs about 300,000 miles before problems, noisy in a good way, great low end torque.  V10 Bad, need to do inflight refueling to make it down the street without stopping, wears out long before the Diesel, also causes everyone around you to immediately die from SOMETHING (I'm sure someone knows and will post).  V10 Good, accelerates like mad, about $4,000.00 cheaper, fuel more readily available.

Hope this helps ya and I'm sure you will be quite pleased with either one.

Subject:  Re: DiRT: V10 -vrs- Desil(sp), whats the truth
Date:      Fri, 02 Apr 1999 21:31:20 PST
From:     "Stevan Gajic" <toe_ball@hotmail.com>
To:          DiRT@moab.off-road.com

First and foremost, it's going to come down to personal preference. Originally, the only reason I bought a Dodge truck is because of the Cummins. The rest of the drivetrain is the same, but the front axle on the 4x4 is a little on the weak side for the heavy diesel. For towing applications, a stock V10 vs. a stock Diesel would be pretty close, though the V10 will outpull the diesel by a little. The Cummins's comercial design means it will be able to keep it up for a long time though. Also this means that it gets better fuel economy and, 7500 mile oil changes are feasable depending on setup and use. Anyway, both are easily upgradeable, but I think the Cummins can go farther for less. There's obviously the inital cost of the Cummins ($2000 more than the V10?) but, again, depending on use, it pays for itself. One other thing is that people associate the sound with big trucks wich will get mixed reactions but mine have been mostly posative, and you should see the looks on peoples faces when they see a perfectly stock Diesel truck smoke the tires (ok so I gotta show off a little bit!). I know the V10 can do that better but nobody expects it from a Diesel :-). In off road, the V10's higher redline and more horsepower (not to mention lighter weight) are a major asset in sand and mud, on any crawling trails the Cummins is incredible, and either one has an impressive crawl ratio behind the 5-speed (6-speed?). I have noticed that the GVWR's are the same for both V10 and Cummins and GCWR may favor the V10 untill the Cummins get 4.10 gears, indicating Dodge feels 10 ft lbs is significant. For the plow, the V10 would probably be better because of the weight involved. I don't know if the front axle will hold up with a diesel plowing application. I do remeber that snow plow prep was available because I ordered my truck with it and then deleted it (which I now regret, oh well).

98 2500HD CC SWB 12-valve 5-speed. Blue.




Last Update: 05/11/99