Diesel engines are often associated with being noisy, smelly, and slow, which can make them seem less exciting than gasoline-powered engines. However, modern diesel engines have come a long way and can provide impressive performance, fuel efficiency, and torque.
One reason why diesel engines may not be considered as “fun” as gasoline engines is that they often have a narrower power band, meaning they don’t rev as high and have less power at higher RPMs. Gasoline engines, on the other hand, are often more responsive and can rev higher, which can make them more engaging to drive.
Additionally, diesel engines typically have a heavier weight and higher compression ratio, which can make them feel less nimble and agile compared to gasoline engines. However, this doesn’t mean that diesel cars can’t be fun to drive, as there are many modern diesel engines that provide a great balance of performance and fuel efficiency. Here are a couple of fun options to go for if you’re looking for a diesel daily that is easy to work and puts the diesel haters in their place.
- Volkswagen Polo GT TDI 1.6 : The Volkswagen Polo GT TDI is a popular hatchback that once came with a 1.6-litre diesel engine that produces 104 bhp of power and 250 Nm of torque. It also comes with a 6-speed manual transmission. We have been lucky enough to review a stage 3 Polo 1.6 TDI and we strongly recommend using the 1.6 TDI as a platform for your next project car since this specific block can tolerate torque figures that are upwards of 400nm! It is fairly cheap to maintain too. Provided you have all of the modifications necessary to support the newfound forced induction of the turbo, you can have yourself a “Giant Slayer” hatchback capable of leaving some luxury sedans pretty perplexed.
- Ford Ecosport: The Ford Ecosport is a compact SUV that is fun to drive and comes with a 1.5-litre diesel engine that produces 99 bhp of power and 215 Nm of torque. It also comes with a 5-speed manual transmission. Having extensively covered the tuning potential of the 1.5 litre TDCI in the Ecosport, we can confidently report that this ford crossover SUV is a great build for people who need space, practicality and manoeuvrability in a package that looks like an SUV, but isn’t. add the fact that this 1.5 TDCI mill performs beautifully in the lower RPMs, the Ecosport is a great all around package that is fun as well as utilitarian.
- Volkswagen Jetta: The Volkswagen Jetta is a premium sedan that offers a blend of luxury and performance. It comes with a 2.0-litre diesel engine that produces 141 bhp of power and 320 Nm of torque. It’s also known for its spacious cabin and comfortable ride. The Volkswagen Jetta 2.0 TDI has good tuning potential due to its strong and reliable 2.0-litre diesel engine. With the right upgrades, it’s possible to significantly increase the power and torque output of the engine. We’re talking about a sub-15 second quarter mile timing.
- BMW 3 Series: The F30 BMW 3 Series is a luxury sedan that offers a thrilling driving experience with its 2.0-litre diesel engine that produces 190 bhp of power and 400 Nm of torque. It’s known for its superior handling, sporty design, and premium features. While the basic 320d might not be an impressive car in terms of power figures, but the narrative takes a quick change when you bring some mods into the mixture, a remap is enough to resuscitate the exhilarating experience you assimilate with a BMW. The 3 series is in our opinion, the best, most accessible BMW car. It is recommended to also fit an upgraded intercooler to reduce the air intake temperatures in order to maintain the engine heat levels post-remapping your car.
- Hyundai Verna: The Hyundai Verna is a popular sedan that comes with a 1.5-litre diesel engine that produces 113 bhp of power and 250 Nm of torque. It also comes with a 6-speed manual transmission. we have covered an entire build series about upgrading the Verna diesel for our Road To Valley Run series, the Verna is a consistent podium winner In its category. As a project, it is rather easy to work on and it is also fairly reasonable to maintain in terms of money, making it a great car to own and enjoy daily even in its modified avatar.
It’s important to note that stage 2 upgrades can put additional stress on the engine and other components, so it’s recommended to also consider upgrading other supporting components, such as the brakes and suspension, to ensure a safe and reliable driving experience. Additionally, it’s important to have the upgrades installed by a reputable and experienced tuner to ensure proper installation and tuning. If you had to pick any of the above, which one would it be? Have we missed out your diesel stallion of choice? Make yourself heard in the comments below!