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Tata Capital > Blog > Loan for Vehicle > Petrol Vs Diesel – Which is more suitable for a Used Car?

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Petrol Vs Diesel – Which is more suitable for a Used Car?

Petrol Vs Diesel – Which is more suitable for a Used Car?

Did you know that over 3.5 million pre-owned cars were sold in FY22? Experts predict that by FY27, this number could go up to 8 million. Surely, the purchase rate of used cars is surging. This spike in India’s used car market has led to an upswing in demand for used car loans. So, if you were planning on bringing your favourite ride home, a second-hand car would be a good call.

While zeroing in on the perfect pre-owned four-wheeler, customers are often riddled with questions. A potential car buyer has a lot on their plate from availing the most attractive used car loan interest rates to choosing between diesel and petrol cars. Well, allow us to point out some striking features and points of differences between a used diesel and petrol vehicle.


The diesel variant is costlier than a used car of the same make powered by petrol. For instance, the showroom price between petrol and diesel variants can differ up to 1 to 1.5 lakhs for a car that costs less than Rs 10 lakhs. However, diesel used cars depreciate slower somewhat justifying the extra expenses.


Compared to petrol used cars, the diesel engines are sturdier and often function smoothly in the long run. However, once it fails, diesel-powered car parts can be more expensive to repair due to the part’s unavailability and the labour costs involved. Besides, a petrol engine’s overall life is higher than a diesel car.

Insurance cost

Used diesel vehicles are more expensive, and so are their parts compared to a used petrol car. And, the vehicle’s price directly impacts the insurance expense. Consequently, the insurance premium for used diesel cars can cost you 10% to 15% more than their petrol variants.


Used diesel cars produce harmful emissions like soot and release particulate matter not good for the environment. Contrarily, petrol cars produce comparatively less air-polluting elements.

Additional Read: Top Used Cars of 2020, Which You Should Consider Buying in 2021


As a fuel, diesel offers higher energy ratings than petrol, which means you use more petrol to achieve a certain amount of power than you would with diesel. As a result, diesel cars deliver much better mileage than used petrol vehicles. Diesel-powered vehicles can be a pocket-friendly purchase for those who regularly travel long distances.


In budget petrol cars, vehicle refinement outscores its diesel counterpart. The Noise, Vibration, and Harshness (NVH) levels are comparatively higher for diesel cars. However, nowadays, premium diesel vehicles deliver refinement performance as excellent as petrol cars. Besides, why lose out on comfort due to extra expenses when a second-hand car loan can easily finance your purchase?

Resale value

With the used car market opening up in India, more and more people are choosing pre-owned cars. Even though petrol-powered engines offer extended durability, used diesel cars possess a higher resale value.

Additional Read: Best Diesel Cars under 10 Lakhs

How to choose?

Now that we’ve looked at some features of both used petrol and diesel cars, let us look at some questions you can ask yourself to make this decision easier:

What is the car’s usage?

How often would you use the car and how long would your drives be? On average, if your monthly usage is going to be less than 1200 km, a used petrol car would be sufficient, but if it’ll be more, then a diesel car would be a better option.

For example, if your car is mainly to drive to and from work, then the less expensive petrol car would be a smarter choice. This way, you also pay lesser premiums on your second-hand car insurance and benefit from your car’s longer life. But if you’re one for frequent road trips in your car, a diesel car would be better as you can get better mileage and its higher-powered engine can make your journeys smoother.

How much are you willing to spend on fuel?

What’s your attitude towards your car’s fuel efficiency? In India, petrol prices have historically been higher than diesel prices. Also, diesel engines give better mileage than petrol engines do. So, if you want to save on fuel, a used diesel car that offers good mileage and consumes cheaper fuel would be a good fit.

But if you’re someone willing to spend some extra bucks if it means a relatively cleaner environment, longer durability, and lower car insurance premiums, then a petrol car will do the trick.

How much are you willing to spend on maintenance?

Vehicle maintenance and insurance are two inevitable factors that need to be considered for every car. While second-hand car insurance is an annual expense, maintenance charges depend on the pre-owned car’s condition and usage and could be much more frequent. As diesel cars are more expensive in both these regards, a petrol car would be the better option if you want to cut down on such overheads.

In a nutshell

If mileage tops your list, a used diesel car may fit the bill. However, if vehicle refinement is dear to you, petrol cars can be ideal. Whichever fuel you opt for, used car finance can take care of your purchase.

Why, yes! Owning a second-hand car is made easy with your reliable financial partner, Tata Capital. Moreover, you can smartly navigate your future expenses by using our online used car loan EMI calculator.

To know more about our pre-owned car loans, get in touch with us today!

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