: What are the major problems and things to look for in 81 diesel Deville?

09-29-10, 01:19 AM
Well an 81 Diesel Deville just went up for sale locally... looks very mint, gonna try and look in person this week.

But it is a diesel and i don't know anything about the diesel cars...

Are there major problems with them like the the 4100 cars?
What are the major problems they seem to have and what should i look for?

Are they worth buying?

Any knowledge would be very helpful!!

09-29-10, 01:41 AM
There was a discussion on here a while back about people not driving then like they should. They were supposed to be driven on the highway and not so much as a city slicker. So if you have 150K on the clock and the owner says it was city driving, that would be a red flag. Something about the engine doesnt get to ideal operating temp with short drives and that isnt so good for the head gaskets. Also, parts arent going to be easy to find. But if you do a lot of road trips, it would bring you pretty decent mileage but if you're looking for a city driver and it already has over 100K, I'd probably go with somthing else.

09-29-10, 01:55 AM
The premature demise of most of these old GM diesels was water in the fuel. Why they didn't put a water seperator in like every other diesel engine is a mystery.

09-29-10, 02:29 AM
buy it and take out the engine and slap in a 368, 425, or a 500. Or a reg 350 olds.

09-29-10, 07:29 AM
My uncle is in the salvage biz. He made A LOT of money buying the GM diesels at auction and swapping in gasoline engines back in the 80s. The diesels were widely considered to be junk.

09-29-10, 11:02 PM
The 350 diesels were OK from about 1983 to 1985. 1985 was the last year. Most of the earlier diesel engines were replaced under warranty, if the 1981 car you are looking for has the "Goodwrench" diesel, and it has been properly maintained with service records as proof, then it may not be so bad. This is one of my favorite 350 diesel web pages: http://a350diesel.tripod.com/menu.html

Good luck and let us know what you think! :)