2.8 or 4.2 diesel?

XJalltheway
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2.8 or 4.2 diesel?

Unread post by XJalltheway » January 12th, 2016, 6:50 pm

I'm looking at getting a GQ (preferably a swb) later this year, and I've noticed the 2.8L are a lot cheaper than the 4.2L. Are they an engine with any major problems that justify the difference in price point? The GQ's with a 2.8 are much more within my price point (although the 4.2's certainly aren't out of reach). All I'm looking for in the engine is reliability and capability. An engine that's not gonna give me any major dramas. The extra grunt of a 4.2 would be nice, buts what's even nicer is saving a few grand by going with a 2.8, if they are a good engine. I've never had a Patrol before, so a little input from the much more experienced member here wouldn't go astray.

XJalltheway
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Joined: June 21st, 2015, 6:39 pm

Re: 2.8 or 4.2 diesel?

Unread post by XJalltheway » January 12th, 2016, 7:30 pm

Oh, and I'm wanting to get the best fuel efficiency I can, to get out to remote places, so I'm guessing the 2.8 wins there.

Peter Aawen
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Re: 2.8 or 4.2 diesel?

Unread post by Peter Aawen » January 12th, 2016, 9:42 pm

Driven reasonably, there's not a heap of difference between the two as far as fuel economy goes - the 2.8 might be marginally better on road but the 4.2 is probably just as marginally better off road. The 2.8 will take more revs to get it moving & keep it moving in the rough stuff, so you'll need to drive & maintain it with some awareness & sympathy for the clutch & cooling system while the 4.2 will just keep on slogging along. The suspension & running gear on both is effectively identical, but the 2.8 driveline has a lighter clutch & gearbox as well as more friction plates in the LSD so that it starts transferring drive away from a spinning wheel just a little earlier (which won't allow it to actually transfer any more drive, just starts a little sooner), and its final drive gearing doesn't leave you as much scope for upgrades to lower gearsets (higher numerically) to cater for taller wheels & tyres, so you will probably be pushing the friendship a little if you want to run 35" tyres or bigger (& the clutch won't like that either!)

Really, while they are both capable on & off road & if driven & maintained properly, can both be extremely robust & reliable albeit a tad agricultural, the 2.8 is probably more suited to a life with bias towards road work & light/medium off road &/or towing, while the 4.2 comes into it's own off road & in the tougher off roading & towing. But both can & will do either, it's just that you won't be working to their strengths. ;)

Over to you. :thumb:
An Ex-Service person is someone who thought enough about their country & how great it is, how lucky we are to live here, to write a blank cheque made out to 'The People and Commonwealth of Australia' for the value of 'Up to & including my Life!'

XJalltheway
Here and there
Posts: 32
Joined: June 21st, 2015, 6:39 pm

Re: 2.8 or 4.2 diesel?

Unread post by XJalltheway » January 12th, 2016, 10:06 pm

Well I guess it's the 4.2 then. I want it for a bit of touring, but mostly some pretty tough local (ish) tracks, so I'd definetly want the stronger of the two. What would be a reasonable price for a 4.2, both stock, and with a few mods in reasonable nick? Just to make sure I know the right price and don't get ripped off. Cheers

Peter Aawen
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Re: 2.8 or 4.2 diesel?

Unread post by Peter Aawen » January 13th, 2016, 6:32 am

Considering that all the GQ's are now pushing 20+ years (even tho the 2.8 diesels weren't available in the early days or in SWB) you are probably going to hafta be fairly careful about checking any vehicle out. Well maintained & looked after vehicles with well done mods & accessories can be fairly exxy just because they are getting rare - just like un-molested low mileage options; and can often have asking prices in the $20-$30K range... But the other end of the market fairly often sees pretty hammered offerings, sometimes with fairly high kms (800k plus isn't unachievable, some with 200K or so on the dial have even passed go once already!) with asking prices sub $5K. You are probably going to be looking at around the $10-$15K mark for a good, well maintained drive-away wagon with records & docs; maybe a bit more for a similar good SWB; but you may well be able to find a pretty reasonable project car for $7-$8K that won't take a heap of work to bring it back to all it's glory.

Just remember for any diesel, you need to know it's not using oil between regularly scheduled changes; it starts first go every time, hot or cold; and it MUST get good results on compression & bleed/leak down tests if you expect the engine to stand any chance of working well for a good while. Half the fun will be the search, but you will get a little jaded with other people's ideas of 'immaculate' rather than 'good nick - for its age'! ;)

Enjoy :thumb:
An Ex-Service person is someone who thought enough about their country & how great it is, how lucky we are to live here, to write a blank cheque made out to 'The People and Commonwealth of Australia' for the value of 'Up to & including my Life!'

XJalltheway
Here and there
Posts: 32
Joined: June 21st, 2015, 6:39 pm

Re: 2.8 or 4.2 diesel?

Unread post by XJalltheway » January 13th, 2016, 7:38 am

Righto, the 7-8k range is much more reachable for me. I've seen the odd 4.2 for sale around the 3.5-5k mark that look in good nick, and apparently they run mint with no problems. Are these recommended to steer clear from because of major problems down the track? Or is it possible to occasionally find a good 4.2 that cheap?

Peter Aawen
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Re: 2.8 or 4.2 diesel?

Unread post by Peter Aawen » January 13th, 2016, 6:29 pm

You've really gotta check them out on a vehicle by vehicle basis. Chances are the cheapies are cheap for a good reason, so look even more carefully at them if you think they are worth looking at at all, but you still should be looking bloody carefully at any 20+ year old vehicle. And watch what's being advertised, the petrol engined GQ jobbies are just as tough as the diesels, but use more fuel the harder you work them. The carby jobs (that are usually those you see for $3-5k) will use more fuel & don't like steep angles off road for reliable running, & gas/petrol carby TB42's are probably the least reliable engine in the Nissan range short of the GU early 3.0l diesel hand grenades (prior to the 'fix fit'). The EFI petrols are better & better on the steep angles, but still use more fuel than either of the GQ Diesels, altho they do have tonnes of power on tap & are generally about half the price!

Still, if you are into long range touring & rough stuff off roading or heavy towing, the 4.2 diesel is the pick, and the better units out there generally command (& get) the higher prices. The mid range priced units have generally seen a lot of work & not being scrupulous in your 'due diligence' checks & pre-purchase inspections can mean you end up with something that's gonna cost a lot of money, time, &/or effort to get that reliable & capable tourer you want, so take your time, DON'T fall in love with anything until AFTER you've done all the testing & checking, and look carefully for indications it's gonna cost you in the long or short term - documentation isn't necessarily a good thing to go by, it's just a start! You WILL need to get your hands dirty or spend some money to get a proper inspection done, & those compression & bleed down checks etc are ESSENTIAL if you want any degree of confidence in the potential for longevity & reliability in a diesel engine, without them, no matter how well it runs right now, you could be driving a time bomb with the fuse already burning bloody fast! :eek:

Good Luck with the search, & remember, take your time, do the checks, and look for a good value for money unit. ;)
An Ex-Service person is someone who thought enough about their country & how great it is, how lucky we are to live here, to write a blank cheque made out to 'The People and Commonwealth of Australia' for the value of 'Up to & including my Life!'

XJalltheway
Here and there
Posts: 32
Joined: June 21st, 2015, 6:39 pm

Re: 2.8 or 4.2 diesel?

Unread post by XJalltheway » January 13th, 2016, 8:00 pm

Cheers mate thanks for that. That is exactly the kind of genuine advice I joined this forum for. I can certainly wait a bit longer and save more cash to get a gq in good condition.

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