• Cummins Will Now Sell You A Turbodiesel Crate Engine

The new “Cummins Repower” program kicks off with a 2.8-liter four-cylinder TD

Cummins, a big name in the turbodiesel world and supplier of the venerable and highly praised inline six-cylinder turbodiesels used in Ram’s heavy-duty pickups, is now launching a crate engine program called Cummins Repower. The program allows the general public to purchase brand new turbodiesels directly from Cummins. Before, salvage yards were the only way to acquire a Cummins not attached to a brand new pickup or piece of machinery. The Repower program’s first crate engine is the R2.8, a 2.8-liter four-cylinder turbodiesel with 161 horsepower and 267 pound-feet of torque.

Cummins is marketing the R2.8 as a cleaner and more fuel-efficient alternative to restoring an older gasoline or diesel engine in classic trucks and SUVs. The turbodiesel uses modern electronics and fly-by-wire connections and meets the EPA’s Tier 1 emissions standards. The R2.8 is derived from Cummins’ global platform engine, which is used in small pickups, chassis cabs, vans, and SUVs worldwide. But Cummins didn’t leave it alone. Updates and emissions modifications were made for the R2.8 with an eye on the North American enthusiast market. Impressively, the heavy-duty turbodiesel weighs only 503 pounds, which is roughly 75 pounds lighter than the classic, all-iron 350 cubic-inch small block Chevy V-8. While the R2.8’s power output isn’t as robust as a modified 350 V-8, the Cummins offers better fuel economy, and its direct-injection fuel system is more reliable than a carburetor could ever hope to be. Of course, there are plenty of downsides, but we’ll cover that below.

Continue reading for more on the Cummins R2.8 turbodiesel.

The Cummins for Anybody

Cummins Will Now Sell You A Turbodiesel Crate Engine Technology
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Cummins is charging $8,999 for the kit

Cummins has been in business since the turn of the 20th century, but 2017 marks the first time the Indiana-based company has offered a crate engine program to the public. While some might say Cummins is late to the game, it seems diesel engines are just now coming into their own. Despite the negative cloud of Volkswagen’s DieselGate hanging over the engine type, diesel-powered heavy-duty trucks are becoming increasingly popular. The diesel turner scene has blown up over the last ten years and the time is seemingly right for a diesel manufacturer to offer a crate engine program. Hopefully, this will spur other diesel manufacturers to compete in the aftermarket, too, igniting an entirely new segment.

The good news for folks wanting an R2.8 is its price. Cummins is charging $8,999 for the kit, which includes the engine itself, the front-end accessory drive, a remote fuel filter and water separator, remote oil filter, starter, flywheel, throttle pedal, engine wiring harness, ECU computer, a dash display, and a universal vehicle wiring harness.

Cummins Will Now Sell You A Turbodiesel Crate Engine Technology
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Cummins Will Now Sell You A Turbodiesel Crate Engine Technology
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Cooling systems and engine mounts are easily ordered online that fit both a specific engine and vehicle combination

But, swapping a Cummins R2.8 into your project vehicle won’t be an afternoon project. The turbodiesel isn’t made specifically for any one type of vehicle, so engine mounts and a cooling system will need to be fabricated, a transmission will need to be adapted and mounted, and the fuel system will need to be plumbed. Between those items, installing the wiring harnesses, and ordering a custom-length driveshaft, a R2.8 swap presents some interesting challenges that have already been solved for typical engine swaps by aftermarket companies.

For instance, a vast majority of classic cars and trucks already have aftermarket support for engines like a small block Chevy or Mopar V-8. Cooling systems and engine mounts are easily ordered online that fit both a specific engine and vehicle combination. With the R2.8, you’ll likely need a fabrication shop or tuning house to custom-build these things – at least for the next few years. Given time, the aftermarket will have ready-to-ship solutions.

Watch the R2.8 in Action

Dirt Every Day host Fred Williams partnered with Cummins in testing a pre-production version of the R2.8 in a Jeep Wrangler TJ. Not only does the video show how the Cummins was fitted into the Jeep, but it also has Williams driving the turbodiesel Jeep completely submerged under water. It’s a good time, so take a look.

Diesel Jeep Drives 12 Feet Underwater

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Mark McNabb
Mark McNabb was a contributor at TopSpeed from 2013 to 2018. Growing up, Mark always had a mind for tinkering on random items throughout his home and dad’s garage, including a 1953 Ford Mainline and 1971 Corvette Stingray.  Read full bio
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Press Release

Today, Cummins Inc. (NYSE-CMI) formally announced that the R2.8 Turbo Diesel crate engine can now be purchased exclusively at www.cumminsrepower.com.

“It’s been nearly a year since we first announced the crate engine program, Cummins Repower™, and the response and anticipation from the Enthusiasts has been overwhelming,” said Steve Sanders, Program Leader - Cummins Repower. “Our team has performed extensive work to ensure this product meets the tremendous expectations of our customers. We are excited to finally bring more high quality Cummins power and dependability to a new group of consumers.”

The R2.8 Turbo Diesel is the first in the series of brand new crate engines that Cummins will market directly to the consumer under the Cummins Repower™ program name. The turbocharged 2.8-liter, 4-cylinder engine is parented from a global platform which is currently used in small pickups, chassis cabs, SUVs, vans, commercial vehicles and industrial equipment around the world, but has been tailored specifically for the North American automotive aftermarket. The proven platform is an efficient and clean alternative that brings new power to vehicles with older, dirtier engines beyond their useful life.

In addition to providing customers with Cummins reliability and dependability, the R2.8 Turbo Diesel kit includes many of the accessories that are vital to installation from the complete front-end accessory drive all the way to the throttle pedal and dashboard display with all of the wiring needed in between. Kitting for the engines takes place in historic “Plant 1” in Columbus, Indiana.

The Manufacturer Suggested Retail Price for the R2.8 Turbo Diesel kits is $8,999 USD with the first shipments expected as soon as mid-October.

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Press release

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