I wanted to provide a brief update after ticking over 1000 miles on the OM617 swap...
Since completing the install I've finally got the truck back to daily driver status. Altogether I'm still very happy with the swap. I still have the 1.2 XC in there but hope to drop to a 1.4 this summer/fall. On the highway the truck's revs are manageable at 60 mph even in 4th gear.
- I actually pass people now
- Acceleration is sufficient such that I'm not a road hazard.
- I can maintain highway speeds on most highway hills (<.25 mile) but very often I do still find myself doing 45-50 on longer hills. I installed a better and more accessible hazard switch for just this reason. I reach for it often.
- It still struggles off the line - due largely to the 1.2 XC. I've learned to manage this, but my methods are probably hard on my clutch.
- If you lose boost (choose wrong gear, stop on a hill, etc) good luck! The boosted vs. non-boosted power ration on this engine is absurd. I can't imagine driving the completely NA version of this engine.
- vibration is lower than the 2.5 NA, idle noise is lower, noise under revs is much higher
- I strongly recommend inter cooling. I'm intercooler and I've never seen EGTs above 1000... and I push the truck pretty hard over the mountains around here. I'd start messing with boost but honestly I don't think my engine's health can handle it.
- Gas mileage isn't amazing so far - but I'm turning meaty KM2s and spending a lot of my commute on long (>1 mile) hills at 16% grade. I'm anxious to take a long trip to test highway mileage because the engine seems to be quite efficient when out where it was made to perform... the highway
- All in all, I would recommend this install if someone is considering a 200/300 tdi.
Maintenance/engine health impressions:
- My particular OM617 is very smokey... especially on startup. In fact, it is getting worse! I may save up some money and take it to a local tech to have the timing done properly this winter
- Its a perfect match for a Land Rover because it seems to be another inherently leaky engine
- I recommend a more refined turbo drain system. Eventually I want to fabricate a steel braided line system. The current system is leaky despite my efforts to clean it up.
- we haven't had warm weather, but so far my two-speed taurus fan keeps coolant temps below 210 F. For the most part, I rarely see coolant temps above 180 - my fan rarely turns on
- Oil temps are manageable
Overall I'm still very happy with the swap and will continue to recommend it. It isn't an LS swap, and I mean that in the good way. It is incredibly simple, near-bolt in, and maintains the rugged efficiency and adaptability of the original land rover diesel engine.