Diesel-powered pickup trucks sell for more than 30% of their gasoline counterparts after three years of fleet usage and return greater value with higher odometer readings, according to data from ADESA.
A diesel 2012 Ford F-250 would have cost 27% more to purchase, selling for $40,700 to the $32,000 cost of its gasoline counterpart, but in 2016 would sell for $23,600 at auction versus the $17,500 fetched by the gasoline truck, which equates to a 35% spread ($6,100) in value if miles are not a factor.
In this example, the case for diesel improves when mileage increases.
For example, a diesel-powered 2012 F-250 with between 100,000 and 150,000 miles would gain an additional $1,000 in residual value, while the gasoline version would lose $1,000, creating a $2,000 spread.
When the mileage exceeds 150,000, the diesel-powered 2012 F-250 holds steady, while the gasoline truck loses $3,000 in residual value. The diesel truck sells for $23,600 at auction while the gasoline truck sells for $14,000, meaning the diesel truck would return 69% more value than the gasoline truck.
"Because the diesel engine can perform well with greater miles, the return is far greater when the miles hit over 100,000 on the odometer," said Jane Morgan, president of ADESA's specialty sales division. "Performance and pull capacity is critical."
On a gasoline engine, ADESA uses a formula of minus 5 cents per mile over 20,000 miles per year (plus 3 cents per mile if under 15,000 miles per year). For the diesel engine, ADESA uses a formula of minus 4 cents per mile over 45,000 miles per year (plus 0.025 cents per mile if under 35,000 miles per year).