How do I get the process started?
To get started, we ask that you email our sales team HERE detailing your vehicle’s specifics as well as any additional items you would like done during the conversion process. We will take this information and create a personalized invoice your project. On this invoice will also be your project’s time-slot which is the date your project is scheduled to begin. To secure this conversion time-slot, we’ll need the deposit outlined on the invoice, a signed copy of the invoice and Diesel Toys® policy page. The average deposit for a D-4D conversion is around $15k.
What is my deposit used for?
The deposit serves two purposes. First, it allows us to acquire the diesel powertrain from overseas and get it shipping to our facility in Texas. Second, it secures you as a conversion customer. We do not require a Diesel Toys-specific deposit as we feel if the customer has purchased a diesel powertrain, they are serious and intent on completing the conversion.
Are these new engines?
In order to have all the components needed for a diesel conversion, we have to buy complete, low-mileage vehicles and strip them of all of their usable parts. We do this for two reasons. First, the engine, transmission, all wiring, accessories, instrumentation, computers all need to be diesel-specific and from the same vehicle. All of these components need to match. Toyota does not sell new “complete” gas or diesel engines, only long-blocks. So, one would have to piece everything together to have an operational engine. This would drive conversion costs into the stratosphere. Due to technical requirements, we need to buy late-model donor vehicles. As a result, our D-4D engines typically have less than 20,000 miles on them.
How do I service my converted vehicle?
We recommend finding a local diesel technician that specializes in TDI Volkswagens. These TDI specialists are typically more familiar with modern 4-cylinder diesels than your domestic diesels. If you cant find one or need a recommendation, hop on TDICLUB.com and look for their Trusted TDI Mechanics List by state.
Do these conversions require the use of diesel exhaust fluid?
None of our conversions require diesel exhaust fluid. We install diesel-specific catalytic converters as standard-installed equipment.
How do I register my conversion in my state?
Every state has different laws regarding emissions testing and procedures. What’s legal in Texas may not be legal in Kansas etc. Many folks email us starting with “I read on the internet that I cant register my conversion here in…”. In the 12+ years we’ve been converting vehicles, we have NEVER had a customer unable to legally register their conversion. Regarding EPA certification: a popular myth is that because an engine is not sold in this country it automatically fails. This is patently FALSE. A NON-EPA certified engine simply means that it has not been certified by the EPA and may be subject to emissions testing (where applicable). Now, if it fails the emissions test, then it WILL need to be brought into compliance (sometimes at considerable expense). Bottom line, if you are concerned about legality and registerability for ON-HIGHWAY USE, we always recommend that you check with your local and state offices to determine legality. Diesel Toys DOES NOT imply legality and offers conversion services “FOR OFF-ROAD USE ONLY”.
Do you repair things during the conversion process?
Through the years, we have had vehicles show up with serious mechanical issues. Sometimes, the owners “assume” that we are rebuilding the entire vehicle so they forget to tell us the fact that the vehicle was totaled, or there was an engine fire etc. The diesel conversion process does NOT include rebuilding items on the vehicle and all pricing is based off a stock, running driving vehicle in good order. For example, we modify (shorten or lengthen) driveshafts in order to suit the diesel powertrain but we need good driveshafts to start with. If you snapped a driveshaft off roading, we will need to replace this at additional cost. If the vehicle has been in a major accident, it is company policy to reject this vehicle outright. If the frame has been compromised through an accident, it can affect fitment and functionality that can cause issues for years to come.
How do you calculate conversion pricing?
We take the cost of the power-train + components required for the conversion + the nationwide average shop rate of $100/hr and we end up with the total for the conversion project. The typical diesel conversion has 100-120 hours of labor factored into the price. So, that translates into $10,000-$12,000 in billable labor hours. The average cost of a low-mileage D-4D powertrain is around $15k. Using a cost of components + labor model, one can expect to spend in the neighborhood of $25k for a completed conversion. This can vary wildly depending on the type of conversion project and model of the vehicle. But, this should serve as an effective guide for accurate pricing.
What happens to my original gasoline powertrain?
Anything we remove from your vehicle is yours to keep. We will place the components on a pallet, shrink wrap it, and get it ready for immediate transport.
Where can I get parts and service?
All of our D-4D conversions include a USB thumb drive that contains a FACTORY TOYOTA SERVICE MANUAL, a New Owner’s Packet containing part numbers, our internal list of overseas sources for any and all parts, and a complete project booklet containing pictures of the project from start to finish. Windows-based diagnostics software and a USB cable can be purchased through our online store HERE. Through the years, we have put together a comprehensive list of trusted diesel-specific service facilities throughout the USA. These are shops that are familiar with our company and our vehicles. Moreover, they are folks we trust to work on our converted vehicles in a manner consistent with our standards. We have also had excellent results telling customers to find an experienced Volkswagen TDI mechanic. Why Volkswagen mechanics? Volkswagen has been producing modern, small-displacement diesel vehicles for years so these mechanics are familiar with the similar layouts of these Toyota 4 cylinder diesels. We also sell parts on our online store, however most parts etc. are available through your local Toyota dealership. If you need something specific, give us a call.
How much is the deposit?
The deposit required is typically in the $12-15k range and is used specifically to acquire the diesel powertrain for your project.
How long does the conversion process take?
All Diesel Toys conversions are done on an individual basis and are custom by nature. We focus on quality, not getting your vehicle slapped together and out as quickly as possible in order to bring the next guy in. Our conversions can take as little as 3 weeks to as long as a year. This depends heavily on what we’re doing to your vehicle, and the options being installed. For example, a solid axle swap v.s. a frame off restoration.