I'm not disputing that you will have enough power to crawl up a mountain or drive the freeway, all I'm saying is to start trying to get more power you really want to do your homework. I agree that you need an intercooler almost before you do much of anything else, it won't add power itself but everything else you do is going to increase exhaust gas temps and there are a lot of people who have melted the pistons in their engines by not controlling these temps. Also install a temp sensor then start playing with the other stuff then you can keep an eye on whats happening. I would love to put a diesel in my Jeep. I wounder what the difference in acceleration would be as far as the difference in tire size, my Mercedes has 14" rims and my Jeep has much larger diameter tires so it would take a little longer to get everything turning. I saw an article a few years back that said Unimog was going to make their version of a SUV that was meant only for exploration in really remote areas, that would be interesting to see.
Homework I have done
It is pretty much a good idea/cheap insurance to run an EGT (Exhaust Gas Temperature) gauge even in stock form. It is an easy thing to install and I would go ahead and write it down as required if you plan on turning up any diesel engine. Definitely a good suggestion Phil12.
An intercooler will actually increase power numbers of the OM617. Along with how well an engine flows air (airflow is the main obstacle that one must overcome in order to make serious power numbers in the case of the OM617), thermal efficiency plays a large role in the functioning of diesel engines. It is honestly difficult to damage the pistons in the OM617. Just like any engine; if you push it way to hard, your going to have problems.
1992 YJ, 4.0 HO, 5-Speed (AX-15), 2.5" lift, 31" tires, Sony sound system, w/ pioneer sound-bar, copper-red paint, Loved it. Miss it. Sold.|1999 XJ. The "Cheep". 4.5" RC lift. 33" BFG MT. Train Horns. 2wd to 4x4 build. DD. Sold.|2003 WJ. 30" Michelin AT's. Curt roof rack. Train Horns. Stock. Soon to be lifted. DD.