There are so many options when it comes to 4x4
engine modifications. Some will increase power, some will improve the vehicle's
fuel economy and other modifications do both.
Let’s have a look at the modifications you
might like to consider, and how they will differ between petrol and diesel
Diesel Engine vs. Petrol
Engine. Which is best?
It all comes down to what you want to do with
your 4x4, so let's have a look at the pros and cons of each.
Diesel 4x4 Engines:
In Australia, the diesel engine is the most
popular choice for 4 wheel drives. One of the reasons being that 4WDs are used
widely by farmers in Australia and in some remote areas there is no petrol
A diesel-powered vehicle will always lack
acceleration and power when compared to a similar petrol engine. However, it
does make up for this with lower fuel consumption and increased torque.
Diesel burns slower than petrol and therefore
it generates more torque at lower rpm.
As a result, diesels are the better choice for
Want to know more about old diesel motors?
See Eric McGrew's interesting write up about old diesel motors HERE.
Driving with a Diesel 4x4 powered vehicle:
A diesel 4x4 has an advantage when it comes to
hill climbs, hill descents, rock crawling and anything that requires low speed.
This is because the engine can idle at lower RPM than a petrol engine with that
massive torque advantage.
Some of the newer diesel 4x4’s is nearly
impossible to stall.
The petrol engine is an option in most 4 wheel drive make
and models. Petrol is available in most areas with the exception of farms,
working stations and some very remote areas.
Petrol powered 4WD’s tend to
drink more fuel than the diesel; this is mainly because petrol burns faster
than diesel. A faster burning fuel allows the vehicle to gain more power and
accelerate to high speeds way quicker than the diesel.
A petrol engine size of 3.6l V6 or higher
will tow anything with no problems but it does have a poorer fuel economy
compared to a diesel.
4 Wheel Driving with Petrol
The higher power and greater acceleration give
a petrol powered 4x4 the advantage on sand tracks, beaches, sand dunes and mud run.
Sand driving is all about the combination of speed and momentum, while being
able to spin the tyres a little in the mud will fling mud from the tread blocks
and make you go further.
What the petrol engine does lack however is the
low-end torque, so stalling is common. If driven correctly this is no real
Interestingly, steep terrain can cause older
petrol (carburetor engine) vehicles some trouble. On extreme hill climbs you
may encounter stalling and difficulty restarting when gravity takes over and
interrupts the flow of fuel from the carburetor.
So, what are the best 4x4 engine modifications
The links below go into more detail on engine modifications for Diesel 4x4 and Petrol 4 wheel drives:
Diesel 4x4 Engine modifications:
Exhaust Systems, Turbo chargers & LPG injection to Diesel.
Petrol Engines modifications:
Performance chips, Exhaust Systems, Super chargers & Sprint Booster.
Snorkels and air intake filters:
Snorkels & Air filter.