News Trucks

Buy This 2,384-Cubic-Inch Detroit Diesel V16 Generator and Power Your Hometown

The engine apparently weighs 11,000 pounds and makes 1,300 horsepower thanks to four turbochargers and all that displacement.
Mark Randall via Facebook Marketplace

Don’t you miss two-stroke Detroit Diesel engines? I mean, maybe not if they’re the reason you wear hearing aids. They were everywhere during trucking’s outlaw era, powering semis across the United States as they buzzed up and down our nation’s highways at high RPM. Some of those measured upwards of 700 cubic inches, though amazingly, they weren’t even the biggest lumps made by General Motors’ powerplant division. Not even close.

Take this colossal V16 for example. Each cylinder measures 149 cubic inches, meaning it packs 39.1 liters of displacement in total. Not only that, but it has four turbos to go along with a pair of Roots blowers. It’s a mighty beast indeed with 1,300 horsepower. And while it may not be well suited for any automotive application, you can still buy it to power your home—and all of your neighbors’.

It’s part of a one-megawatt generator setup that’s being sold on Facebook Marketplace for $13,000. Sure, that’s pricey for backup power, but this is no whisper-quiet Honda meant for the RV park. It’s a screamer that can make enough juice to run 750 homes at once, according to California ISO. Now you’re starting to see the value, huh?

The seller claims it weighs 11,000 pounds on its own, though it’s currently mounted on a trailer whose total weight is roughly 40,000 pounds. You’d want a semi-truck to move it, then, not to mention newer tires as the ones it has now are showing their age. It’d be a huge flex to show up in something like a GMC Crackerbox to retrieve this unit.

It hasn’t run in at least two years, though the exhaust has been covered throughout its time in storage. The seller says they’re willing to get it going if someone puts down a deposit, and that just might be worth it. Either way, the meter shows that it has 3,755 hours of runtime or about 157 days. That’s not too bad considering this engine is at least 24 years old—Detroit Diesel built 149-Series engines from 1967 to 1999.

This would surely be a big project to take on, but if you need a megawatt generator, odds are you’re used to big projects. You’re not likely to find another for sale, and it’s located in Neosho, Wisconsin. Hopefully, that’s close by if you need it. Otherwise, don’t forget to factor in transportation costs.

Got a tip or question for the author? Contact them directly: