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Gas vs. diesel

I have to remotor my two people golfcart.In order to keep the rearend rpm`s the same, I have to go back with a 3600rpm engine. By size, weight and ofcourse money I have narrowed it to either a 16hp single cyl. gas or a 10hp single cyl. diesel engine, both aircooled. Question: can I expect the same power output and quick response from smaller diesel engine than I can get from a gas engine? I’m stuck with the original beltdrive system, so reaching the high rpm range is critical. Any input is greatly appreciated. Thanks, dodgeman1

Diesels usually have more torque…So from a dead stop it should be faster. But a gas engine usually revs higher so the top-end of the diesel may not be there. For a golf cart…I suspect either will do fine.

Knowing nothing about diesel golf carts, my only question is - don’t diesels stink? Do you want to live with that?

I would swap in a Suzuki Hayabusa engine. You’d have the fastest golf cart on the course.

I have never heard of a diesel golf cart and I can’t really imagine a golf cart application really takes advantage of any of diesel’s strengths, other than maybe the ability to run it on the french fry grease from the pro-shop cafe. I’d definitely go for the gas engine.

Good point - OP, have you seen this type of diesel engine in a cart? I would think a small diesel engine would be for running a generator, something like that, not something that’s constantly starting and stopping.

Forget the diesel in a golf cart…All you will get is more noise, more vibration and more weight. Also, achieving 3600 rpm will push a diesel to it’s upper operating limits. Single cylinder diesels have a heavy flywheel which means very slow throttle response… They are made to power generators and pumps, not vehicles.

Having said that, I have a 10hp Yanmar air-cooled diesel engine I will sell you cheap. It was used as a marine engine in a sailboat which was wrecked in a storm. The engine was never under water, the boat went up on the rocks high and dry…

I don’t golf, but are petroleum fueled golf carts allowed on the courses? I always assumed they allowed only electrics to keep noise to a minimum and prevent damage to the fairways.

I have never heard of a diesel golf cart and I can’t really imagine a golf cart application really takes advantage of any of diesel’s strengths, other than maybe the ability to run it on the french fry grease from the pro-shop cafe. I’d definitely go for the gas engine.

Diesel golf carts are very popular in Mountain or very hilly Golf couses.

In the “Old Folks” sub-divison I live in, people use golf carts for basic short range transportation, no golf courses within miles.

Cool.

Tim Allen! What are you doing here!?

Most golf courses I play at have the electric carts. (Although I always walk and carry). But for very hilly courses the electrics can’t hold a charge long enough to go 18 holes. And some of the VERY HILLY have diesel for the added torque and gas mileage.

You don’t want to deal with diesel fuel because it makes a mess wherever you use it. It also leaks from any fitting that isn’t perfect. If it’s gasoline driven now, then it will be a lot easier to stay with it.

The more I’ve thought about this…the last time I ever saw a diesel golf cart was probably 20 years ago. I’ll bet they’ve made improvements with the gas versions that diesels aren’t needed anymore. Personally I’d stick with gas.

My brother-in-law who lives in a nice community in Georgia has trails for people to use golf-carts on. You’ll find several of these communities around…NOT just in the “Old Folks” sub-divisions.

If it is only being used inside a sub-division, wouldn’t an electric golf cart be good enough?