Why Is Diesel Cheaper?

Diesel fuel is less volatile and heavier than gasoline, making it easier to refine from crude oil. As a result, diesel is generally less expensive than gasoline in most countries. The price differential would expand if demand for diesel fuel rises.

Do diesels really save money?

Customers who drive a lot of highway miles prefer diesel engines, according to Bell Performance and Road and Track, because they are more efficient on these roads than gas engines. Diesel fuel simply has more energy per gallon than gasoline, making it more cost-effective overall. Diesel engines are still more fuel efficient than gasoline engines, but they are less so for city drivers. Diesel cars also have higher torque, which means they get better gas mileage and accelerate faster.

It’s crucial to keep in mind that some types of diesel fuel can reduce vehicle performance. Black diesel, biodiesel, and other improved diesel products are among them.

Diesel and gasoline are around the same price for most Americans. Diesel can sometimes be more expensive than gasoline, yet it can also be less expensive than gasoline. Even if you pay more on diesel fuel, a diesel engine will still provide better fuel efficiency throughout the life of the car. This is because an 8-liter gasoline engine would be required to produce the same level of power as a 6-liter diesel engine.

Diesel engines, according to Digital Trends, are more durable and endure longer than gas engines, with reliable operation and low maintenance requirements. Diesel cars used to be substantially heavier than comparable-sized gas cars, but thanks to contemporary manufacturing technologies, this is no longer an issue.

Diesel engines also have fewer components than gasoline engines, reducing the number of potential parts that could fail in your vehicle.

Diesel engines often require fewer repair and maintenance services than gasoline engines, resulting in a cost savings.

While early diesel engines had a well-deserved reputation for being noisy, current technology has largely addressed this issue. Noise pollution and dark smoke have been reduced, so if you were concerned about those issues in prior decades, you may wish to reconsider diesel as a viable option. Today, the driving experience in a diesel-powered vehicle is essentially identical to that of a gasoline-powered vehicle.

Why is diesel cheaper than gas 2020?

On a dollar-per-gallon basis, on-highway diesel fuel costs have been higher than regular-grade gasoline prices virtually continually since September 2004. This tendency contrasts with the prior historical pattern of diesel fuel prices being lower than gasoline prices, with the exception of harsh winters when demand for heating oil drove diesel fuel prices higher. Diesel fuel costs have been higher than conventional gasoline prices in recent years for three key reasons:

  • Diesel and other distillate fuel oils have seen strong demand, particularly in Europe, China, India, and the United States.
  • In the United States, the move to less polluting, lower-sulfur diesel fuels had an impact on diesel fuel production and distribution costs.
  • On-highway diesel fuel has a federal excise tax of 24.3 cents per gallon, which is 6 cents per gallon greater than gasoline.

This Week In Petroleum delves into the world of petroleum markets. This FAQ topic is covered in greater depth in the May 20, 2009 and March 26, 2008 editions.

Other FAQs about Diesel

  • Does the EIA provide state-by-state estimates or projections for energy output, consumption, and prices?
  • In the United States, how much biomass-based diesel fuel is produced, imported, exported, and consumed?
  • How much carbon dioxide is created by gasoline and diesel fuel consumption in the United States?
  • How much does a gallon of gasoline and a gallon of diesel fuel cost?

Why is diesel more expensive?

The cost of diesel fuel is higher. Diesel fuel is subject to a higher federal excise tax than gasoline (24.4 cents per gallon vs. 18.4 cents per gallon for gasoline), and diesel fuel is occasionally subject to a higher state tax.

Is diesel cheaper to produce than petrol?

It was previously denounced as a toxic scourge, blamed for billowing clouds of harmful particles into the atmosphere and into our lungs. Now it is hailed as the fuel of the future.

Cars powered by diesel have never been more popular. Only roughly one in every eight automobiles in the UK utilized diesel towards the end of the 1990s; this year, the proportion is expected to approach 50%. It is used in more than seven out of ten cars sold in France.

Modern diesel engines are generally dependable, release little CO2, and black smoke is almost non-existent.

With gasoline prices rising, it’s no surprise that drivers were ready to convert to diesel; who wouldn’t be if it meant a 20-30% reduction in miles per gallon?

But that may not be the case for much longer. Diesel may be environmentally friendly and becoming increasingly clean, but it is no longer inexpensive. Diesel recently overtook unleaded gasoline by a few cents per litre, but the gap is currently widening by up to 13 pence in some filling stations.

Will the owners of Britain’s projected 17 million diesel automobiles discover that they have a white elephant on their hands as the price approaches £6 per gallon?

The popularity of diesel has been on an incredible roller-coaster journey. Looking back, it’s evident that whether diesel or gasoline wins the automotive beauty contest has a lot to do with taxation policies and green fads, rather than science and engineering.

Diesel (named after German inventor Rudolf Diesel, who invented the first diesel-powered engine in 1892) and petrol are distillates made from crude oil.

Vegetable matter, such as leftover cooking oil, and a variety of ‘biodiesels’ generated from crops such as oilseed rape and palm oil, can also be used to power diesel engines. Diesel is heavier and ‘oilier’ than gasoline, with a significantly higher ‘energy density,’ or the amount of power released per unit of fuel consumed.

Diesel produces approximately 40 megajoules of energy per litre, compared to approximately 35 for gasoline. Diesel engines emit 10 to 20 percent less CO2 per mile than identical petrol engines. Diesel is also less prone to evaporation, making it cheaper to produce and store.

Is owning a diesel worth it?

Diesel engines are similar to gasoline engines in that they use an internal combustion engine to move pistons inside cylinders and then send power to the wheels.

One major distinction between these two types of engines is that gasoline ignites at a higher temperature and requires the help of spark plugs, whereas diesel fuel can ignite just through compression, eliminating the requirement for spark plugs and a distributor.

Diesel fuel is significantly higher in energy density, which means diesel engines are typically 30% more efficient and create more torque than gasoline engines. Buying a diesel-powered automobile is technically worthwhile if you drive more than 10,000 miles per year – largely on the highway – because diesel engines burn fuel more slowly, resulting in greater efficiency and overall durability.

Why do diesels last longer?

A gas engine would have reached the end of its life 20 years ago at about 100,000 miles, but today’s engines are constantly making another trip around the odometer. However, while gasoline engines can now reach 200,000 miles and beyond, diesel engines can also reach 500,000 miles and beyond. The following are three reasons why diesel engines survive longer than gasoline engines:


We’ve all learned the hard way that larger isn’t necessarily better. Diesel engines, on the other hand, are designed to endure longer than their gasoline equivalents. Compression ratios and cylinder pressures are higher in diesel engines than in gasoline engines. Diesel engines are designed with these factors in mind. Their crankshaft and camshaft are larger, necessitating larger bearings and stronger main and rod bolts. Increased clearance from larger crankshafts and camshafts provides for greater oil flow. Better engine lubrication means reduced engine wear, which extends the engine’s life.

Other significant design features of the diesel engine contribute to its durability, including:

  • Most diesel engines feature a gear-driven construction, which means you won’t have to worry about timing belt issues. This also saves money on costly maintenance because the timing belt does not need to be replaced.
  • Piston cooling jet – Piston cooling jets spray engine oil on the bottom of your pistons in diesel engines. This engine oil spray protects pistons from premature wear by keeping them properly lubricated, which lowers friction and keeps them cool.
  • There are no spark plugs in diesel engines, so the gasoline burns more slowly. Because of the slower burn, there is less stress and more torque, which is essential for diesel engine efficiency.

Diesel Fuel

The fuel that diesel engines burn is another reason they survive longer than gasoline engines. Diesel fuel is a form of distillate fuel made primarily from crude oil, which allows diesel engines to wear their cylinders out more slowly than gasoline engines. This adds diesel fuel lubricating qualities, extending the engine’s total lifespan. On the contrary, gasoline is mostly composed of aromatic hydrocarbons, which function similarly to harsh and corrosive solvents. This lack of lubricity causes your engine’s components to wear out prematurely. Diesel engines have lower exhaust gas temperatures (EGTs), which contributes to their increased lifetime. Despite the fact that diesel fuel has 139,000 British thermal units (BTUs) compared to 115,000 BTUs for gasoline, the principles of thermodynamics dictate that the higher compression ratio diesel engine’s expansion rate actually cools the exhaust gases faster. The first flame front is cooler due to the lower auto-ignition temperature of roughly 410°F for diesel fuel compared to 495°F for gasoline. Diesel engines also have a substantially lower air-to-fuel ratio, ranging from 25:1 to 70:1, compared to 12:1 to 16:1 for gasoline engines. EGTs are cooled by a lower air-to-fuel ratio. In addition, gasoline burns more faster than diesel fuel. Because of the slower laminar speed of the flame during combustion in diesel engines, there is less shock to the rotating assembly, which adds to their durability.

Lower RPMs

The third factor that determines how long a diesel engine lasts is its operating efficiency. In comparison to a gas engine, diesel engines have lower revolutions per minute (RPMs) and produce more torque. The ability to create the same power at lower revolutions implies less wear on your pistons, rings, cylinder walls, bearings, valves, and guides, extending the life of your engine. When diesel engines are not in use for long periods of time, they are usually left running. The regular cycling of turning the engine on and off saves wear compared to a gasoline engine since a major percentage of wear occurs at starting. It also decreases heat cycles and maintains stable operational temperatures.

Expert Spotlight:

PSP Diesel in South Houston, TX, is known for their 6.0L Ford Powerstroke builds, and Stephen Peters has this to say about why diesel engines survive longer:

“Diesel users often use their engines for far more than what they were designed for. In contrast to the conventional start/stop patterns of a gasoline engine, this is typically done to generate maximum torque and run for longer periods of time during the day. They aren’t exposed to abrupt starts and stops. One of the most abrasive actions on a motor is starting it. While idling your engine is not good for its longevity, that is exactly what the majority of these trucks are doing. They run long hours and are worked very hard because they are started at the beginning of the day and shut off at the end, but that is their job.”

Peters continues, “Diesel engines are simply intended to be more durable. For example, the blocks are larger, the walls are thicker, and the pistons are larger. And, even with the extra weight, let alone the tight tolerances in the rings to avoid blow-by, the design was created with lubrication in mind, reducing friction and damage to the rubbing parts.”

Is diesel worse for the environment?

When diesel fuel (refined from crude oil) is used, it emits a variety of hazardous emissions, and diesel-fueled vehicles are major emitters of pollutants like ground-level ozone and particulate matter. The US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) created limits for the sulfur content of diesel fuel and emissions from new diesel engines to address this issue.

What will gas prices be in 2030?

The Henry Hub price is expected to rise to $2.65 per MMBtu by 2024, according to the IMF. Meanwhile, the World Bank projects a more hopeful $3.16 per MMBtu price. According to the World Bank, the price of natural gas at Henry Hub would rise to $4 per MMBtu by 2030.

Is diesel or gas better for the environment?

Using diesel fuel minimizes dangerous CO2 emissions that contribute to global warming, according to recent science.

Engines that run on diesel are more efficient than those that run on gasoline. Even though diesel has a higher carbon content than gasoline, efficient diesel engines produce less carbon into the atmosphere.

The difference in CO2 emissions between diesel and gasoline was recently calculated by environmental scientists. In practice, this amounts to around 200g CO2/km for gasoline and 120g CO2/km for diesel. That’s a 40 percent difference!

Consider this: if every car ran on diesel, the world’s CO2 pollution would be reduced by 40%.

Is diesel cleaner than gas?

Diesel engines emit less pollution than gasoline and alternative fuel engines. Diesel engines emit less carbon dioxide than gasoline engines. They have the potential to emit more CO2 than other fuels. Diesel, on the other hand, emits less carbon dioxide over its whole lifecycle than both fossil and alternative fuels. Alternative fuels and gasoline, for example, emit more hazardous pollutants than diesel, carbon monoxide, and nitrous oxides.