why aren’t diesels used in racing?


In my head, diesels should be great for racing. They make great torque and great HP. Why aren’t they used for racing?

In: 5

Diesel engines typically weigh twice what a gasoline powered engine weighs. They’re also pretty complex and costly to maintain.

[They](https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=swxTZBzNnGc) [are](https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cxNVmMycSdU). or maybe I should say were.

They don’t make good HP compared to their gasoline counterparts though; gasoline burns much quicker than diesel does which causes the redline of diesel engines to be much lower. Audi had to spend shitloads of R&D money in making a diesel engine that could operate at high RPMs. Audi has since switched to hybrid drive trains which offer many of the same advantages (fuel economy, actually instant torque) and can operate at high RPMs.

It depends on the kind of race: if you are looking at hill climbs then maybe. F1 ? Well diesel fuel has a lower power density, which means less power per litre than gas/petrol which gives a penalty in racing.

Which is also why very few aircraft are diesel powered.

There are more complicated issues about high revving diesels but they take us well beyond Elif….. but Googling will get you there.

From first principles we should expect diesel to be less suited for racing. It’s a less refined products that’s a mix of different chemicals. All other things equal would expect one particular chemical, and an engine designed around it, to have better characteristics regardless of what that characteristic is. Or if it’s a mixture of compounds then at least one that is carefully specified as opposed to diesel which can be a wide range of mixtures.