SHTF Truck: Gas or Diesel?

   10.06.15

SHTF Truck: Gas or Diesel?

I’m going to be in the market for a truck, soon–my first, after a lifetime of sedans and SUVs. I had been thinking of getting a half ton pickup, mostly for light hauling and chores, and had decided that for SHTF reasons (plus the cool factor) I’d be getting something with offroad capabilities.

I had just about resolved to wait on Ford to launch the new 2017 Raptor about a year from now (yes, I’m a patient man), when I read a post on a prepper board about the virtues of diesel in a SHTF vehicle.

The main advantages that the poster gave for diesel are 1) shorter gas lines in a mass bug-out situation, and 2) ability to raid fuel from (possibly abandoned) eighteen wheelers.

I honestly hadn’t thought of either of these, before. My only previous motive for considering diesel was the idea that a diesel engine could be adapted to run on a variety of fuels, including fuels made from kerosene and cooking oil. But I figured I’m not likely to have much kerosene or cooking oil on hand in a SHTF situation, so I sort of dropped it.

Now I’m back on a diesel kick, not just for my truck but for the fact that I have other equipment at my bugout location that runs on diesel, as well. And then there’s the fact that diesel keeps longer than gas, so if I were to spring for an on-site storage tank I could prep by storing a few thousand gallons of diesel that at the very least gets used to run my equipment in a non-SHTF situation.

As for which truck, I have my eye on Nissan’s upcoming 2016 Titan reboot right now, which crams a Cummins diesel engine into a half ton pickup body. We’ll see what the reviews (and the wife) say about it.

So, what do you guys think? Am I putting too much weight on the fuel type, here? Are there any disadvantages to having a diesel car on-hand in a SHTF situation? And not that I’m not really considering an EMP situation, in which case none of my cars would start because they’re all to stuffed with computer chips. I’m just thinking strictly in terms of fuel flexibility right now.

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