Looking to purchase a mobile vet clinic that uses a Ford E450 chassie. I can get it in either the Triton V10 gas or diesel 7.3L powerstroke engine. Know nothing about either and was wondering advantages of both. Will be putting on 8-12K miles/yr.
Location: I'm lost somewhere in NJ -- can someone please find me?!?!?!?
Ford E450 Super Duty: Gas or Diesel?
Diesel Distavantages: more up-front cost (several thousand more), more costly oil changes, needs to be plugged in during the colder points in the winter (by plugged in, I mean an oil pan warmer), stinky exhaust (though some here really like it... you know what they say about the scent of your own cologne...), loud engine.
Diesel advantages: Much longer duration, better mileage, and the diesel boys won't make fun of you. Better torque for pulling/dragging/towing a lot of weight. That's about it.
You'll do fine with either engine; I'm assuming, of course, your mobile vet clinic won't haul more than a ton at most in addition to the weight of the vehicle. Given you're only putting 10-12K per year, it might be better for you to get the gas engine seeing as how you don't put on enough mileage to realize the long, long, long-term cost savings of the diesel. Be forewarned, however, that you will probably see around 10 MPG with the V-10 around town, especially if you've got a lot of equipment weighing the rig down. You'll do better on the highways with a light gas pedal foot, but the biggest disadvantage of the gas engine is the MPG's. With the low mileage you plan on putting on, I wouldn't worry too much about this, though.
Also, the new 6.0 diesel Ford introduced still hasn't had all the gremlins worked out of it. If we were talking about last year's tried-and-true 7.3 PSD, I would say you'd be a winner with either choice. Given the 6.0's history (or lack thereof) I would be hesitant to recommend the diesel engine at this point in time unless you really have a need for it.
Haroutd is right on as usual. My concern would be: Are you going to do extensive idling with it? Is it going to be sitting on the side of the road with the motor running for hours? If you go with the diesel, make sure you get the idling "gizmo" (I forget what it's called) that steps up the RPM's for extensive idling, or damage can occur to that diesel engine.
If you are going to "5 year depreciate" it and sell it, the gas motor may make more sense. If you're going to keep it longer, the 7.3 is a good engine for longevity.
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