I have a 2010 Ford S-max 1.8 TDCi with 70K miles. The engine starts most of the time, sometimes I have to try 2-3 times. If it happens to not start, the engine barely runs, maybe for a second if at all. But it starts eventually, and then it feels weak. When I drive, there is very little power felt at low revs, and pressing down the accelerator makes no difference at all. Eventually as the revs do come up, around 2.5k or so when the turbo kicks in, the car begins to feel normal, i.e. accelerating is possible beyond just a feather light foot on the gas pedal.
Air filter, oil filter, glow plugs, engine oil is all new. I only use BP and Shell diesel.
I took it to a garage a long time ago after it broke down completely, where the chaps said they found metal dust or shavings in the fuel system (either pump or filter, I cannot remember word for word), and pump + injectors need to be replaced and fuel lines cleaned out. To save me some money there and then, instead they cleaned the injectors, tank, fuel lines and changed the fuel filter - so they said at least. It's been fine from then, until a few months ago. But I really don't want to fork out for 4 injectors and a fuel pump for a 12 year old car.
Before the car started playing up, my better half drove it very close to empty tank but I am unsure if this could have contributed - my understanding is that fuel is sucked from the bottom of the tank.
Just to be sure, I am aware what diesel lags feels like - this is not it. Starting on hill used to be simple, ample power, it's a diesel after all. Now I have to be much more careful, more clutch, to the point people behind must be wondering why I am driving slowly.
Grateful for insight as to what might be going on here.