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Which Diesel Pickup Should I Buy?



  • tent2tttent2tt Posts: 46

    Thanks for the update. I hadn't heard about power issues with the new Cummins.

    Have been looking at downsizing our travel trailer size considerably to still be able to use a Nissan Frontier, because the diesel and other 1/2 tons just feel to big for our everyday needs. There are at least some very lightweight and towable TT brands that have excellent reliability ratings.

    For people who really need a huge work truck and greater tow capacity, I can completely understand why the diesels are the best way to go.

    I only hope that the gas engine manufacturers will work harder on increasing mpg--I believe the technology exists, just hasn't been introduced to the market yet.
  • coontie57coontie57 Posts: 128
    I went out car shopping today and went to the Toyota dealer locally to see the hybrid. While I waited for a salesman to show up I saw a nice shiny Tundra so I walked over and took a free look. It had the crew cab with 4 full doors, 4 x 4 and I can't remember what else... Seemed the box in the back was smallish but I didn't actually measure to see if it was 6.5 ft like the Chevy..but I was thinking 4 ft. What I did notice is the 5.7L engine and the window sticker at $42,5000 or so... and the 17 mpg highway.. No wonder they are offering discounts and such.

    As I see it with the Duramax I can beat that any day on the road mpg and I wouldn't consider pulling anything with much size with a 350 Chevy engine and that's what a 5.7L really is.. I should have taken a few extra moments and looked at the towing capacity but I didn't.

    Another real thing to consider is a person really doesn't know what he will be pulling in 3 years... 5 years etc.. My new bass boat is also quite heavy with 2 axles and I am glad I have the power I have. That poor Chevy stays hooked up to something heavy most of the time. It gets no break as they say.
  • blufz1blufz1 Posts: 2,045
    Consider an aluminum bass boat which would require a smaller motor and save weight. There's always somebody in an Allison that's faster. :)
  • nedzelnedzel Posts: 787
    A three-quarter ton truck with a diesel will surely pull a 5500 lb trailer. But that is extreme overkill, given that a Ford F150 will pull a 10,000 lb trailer. The diesel engine upgrade alone will cost you $6000 -- and that's just to go from a gas F250 to a diesel F250. The cost to go from a gas F150 to a diesel F250 is well beyond $6000. You can buy a whole lot of gas for $6000.
  • coontie57coontie57 Posts: 128
    You are right a 1/2 ton Chevy, Ford, or Dodge will certainly pull a 5500 lb trailer. My problem is I can't seem to figure out what I want 5 or so years from today. That and the reliability / longevity of a diesel makes sense to me. I like to think I can drive something for over 300,000 miles. That's what I was going for when I bought the 99 Ford 250 diesel but the transmission let me down. The engine was fine when I sold it at 109,000 but two transmissions later and I just had to go elsewhere..

    I still have my OLD 91 Chevy 1500 4 x 4 but I only got it in a V6... really silly of me.. I had a nice little aluminum boat and couldn't see getting a fiberglass but then a good deal came up and the little 6 cylinder had problems... The old Chevy now has 168,000 on her... I am going to keep it till I turn 200K and then say goodby... I do like the 8 ft bed for hauling sheetrock etc..
  • highndrihighndri Posts: 1
    I have a 01 tundra v8, 2wd and pull a 7200lb travel trailer. get 18mpg around town and hwy-- BUT only around
    6-8 mpgs towing the trailer depending on hills and my i dunnno ..I'm looking at diesels
  • johnminnjohnminn Posts: 52
    My neighbor and his boys have 3 dodge diesels and they have not had ONE single major engine problem.

    The oldest is a 1997. Next is a 2004 and now a 2007

    ALL 3 are still running and none has had a major problem except rust on the 1997 from the tons of salt they use on the highways around here.
    Jim pulls a heavy steel cattle trailer which holds up to 18 head.

    I JUST had to have a Ford (dumb jerk!) F350 with that "Wonderful" 6.0L diesel which has spent so many days in Ford shops that I have lost count. The head gaskets blew at 59,000 miles. They asked me what I wanted to do with it and I said (half joking) burn that pile of Cr__.
    The ABS system has failed from 2000 miles on and they can't seem to get it to work dependably. Now they say it is out of warranty so they won't fix that which they never did fix.

    Now that I have shifted my brain in gear, I am looking for Dodge 1 Ton.
  • Kirstie_HKirstie_H Posts: 11,077


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  • I had a 2005 Tundra and pulled a 5500# trailer, got 7 MPG. It really sucked. Now I have a 2007 Dodge Ram 2500 with the 5.9 diesel. I get 14 mpg loaded and it's not even broken in yet. I bought early so I could get the 5.9. They have a 6.4 but it's hasn't been proven yet. It should take a few years to get it tuned just right and to get the "after treatment device" to work properly. I would recommend the 5.9 or wait a couple years.
  • Want a import? Buy a Duramax,Chevy by powered Isuzu!
  • moparbadmoparbad Posts: 3,870
    Want a import? Buy a Duramax,Chevy by powered Isuzu!


    Duramax engines are manufactured in Moraine, OH.
  • Chevy Duramax engines are great, but Dodge Cummins is American made if that has any influence over your decisions. Duramax are made by ISUZU in Japan by a GM/ ISUZU joint venture called DMAX limited. My friend has a Duramax in his 2006 Sierra 2500 HD. He likes it but he says he only gets 11 or 12 miles to a gallon. I guess Cummins won't get much better. :shades:
  • Not only is the Duramax made right here on American soil it is built by GM. When GM sold it's share of Isuzu some time back it kept all ownership of the Duramax. Just so you are not confused the Duramax was jointly developed by GM and Isuzu. Car companies do this from time to time to save on developement cost. And since GM owned part of Isuzu why not.

    As for MPG:

    Mine is a 2003 2500HD Crew Cab. While towing at 13K High profile Fifth Wheel Camper I get 11 to 12 MPG (70 MPH). When not towing I can get 21 to 22 MPG if I keep my leg out of the injectors.

  • My son has a 2008 1 ton Dodge fully loaded. 3200 miles. When he took his truck in for warranty repair on the transmition, they said no way would they warranty it, problem is due to abuse. He got stuck in a snow pile in Park City Ut. Now how in the heck can a transmition go out in a 1 ton getting out of a snow pile?? He took it to another place that specializes in transmissions, which he has to eat the cost and the owner told my son that he has 20, repeat 20 Dodge 1 tons sitting in his yard for repair, that Dodge will not warranty. He further stated that in his 45 years in business that Dodge 1 ton transmitions will not hold up- ever, they way they are. When he gets his truck repaired, he will be trading it in on a Duramax which is what he owned before. Oh by the way, at the time he worked for a Dodge dealer, as a technician. So beware of Dodge 1 ton.
  • sc2sc2 Posts: 3
    I'm considering purchasing my first diesel. I am seriously considering the Duramax/Allison combo but have had several friends report only getting approximately 12 mpg. I like the ride and interior of the GM as opposed to the Dodge...However last week I went fishing with a friend in his Dodge (programmed with a Bullydog and upgraded tourque converter) and that truck screemed. We averaged over 20 mpg and he could smoke the tires without trying. I like the idea of the Cummons but I'm not sure about the Iason tranny. The GM seems to be holding it's value a bit better but the Cummons was a really strong motor. I will be towing toys (boat, bikes, and 4 wheelers). Any suggestions?
  • sc2sc2 Posts: 3
    I asked for the advise between the GM and Dodge a few days ago. To go a bit deeper, I'm going to buy a 4x4 crew cab (kids are all grown and don't need a mega) in Utah the GMC's are really holding their values. I passed on a 07 Dodge yesterday with 7,800 miles on it for 28K (I'm still wondering if I did the right thing) I have located an 06 GMC that I'm seriously considering for about 27K.
    I'll be pulling toys with it and that's about it. How have your experiences with programmers vs chips been? This GM has a bullydog (generally I see the Edge in GM products and the Bullydog in the Dodge) but the milage is showing close to 20+. Would you go chip or programmer? Gages to monitor temps or program it and forget it?
    I won't be smoking the tires on it (much) but I'm concerned about the chip or programmer shortening the life of the engine.
    Thanks again
  • Hello, and thank you for reading my post.

    I live in Atlanta, and will be moving to Colorado this year. I have two trucks, an 01 F150 Supercrew, and a 94 F250 XLT Diesel. Both are two wheel drive, so I am selling both.

    I am also hearing that diesel 250s, 2500s, 350's and 3500 are selling at 40% to 50% off sticker based on drop in demand. True ?

    I do know my next truck will be a diesel, and 4 wheel drive. Here is where I need help.

    1. As I am moving from a warm climate to a cold climate, should I shop for dealer stock only in colder states to be sure the truck on the lot has block heaters and other cold weather specific applications ?

    2. In a couple of years, I may buy a fifth wheel camper. A local dealer said to get a 3 ton series dually. But, having driven two, I just don't find dually's to my preference. I will be using the truck on a hobby farm with horses. Does a dual rear wheel make a big difference ?

    3. Ok, now for the religiuous questions. I have never owned a Dodge. My first truck was a GMC, with my two current trucks as Fords. A local Dodge dealer (depending on answers to question one) appears to have the most aggressive pricing.
    But I know the 09 Dodge will change body styles.

    So, for a truck used 50% for driving, 35% for work and 15% for hauling, a 2 ton or 3 ton ? Dually or single ? and which brand ?

    4. Can any of there trucks run biodiesel with no modifications or with modifications that do not void a warranty ?

    5. For the Chevy fans, what is the difference in a GMD and Chevy ?


  • obyoneobyone Posts: 8,054
    For the Chevy fans, what is the difference in a GMD and Chevy ?

    GMC has lock washers and Chevy doesn't. ;)

    One thing for sure if you're looking for a 4x4 I'd buy it in a warmer state that doesn't need 4x4 as the pricing should be better compared to an area that needs 4x4.

    The SRW 350s or 3500 are rated to haul and tow more than a dually. The benefit to a dually is stability of the load and not a higher tow or haul rating.

    Better buy it now before gas and diesel prices drop anymore resulting in people buying trucks again.
  • WRONG!!! I have a 2001 3500 with a 5.9 cummins and I average 18.5 on the back roads and 20 on highway I have heard the chevys get poor mileage ( not surprising chevy's are junk) but if it's any consolation the new fords are getting 8 to 10mpg! Want a real diesel buy a dodge with the cummins!!
  • If you are looking for a 3/4 or 1-ton package that is not going to break, there is ony one choice. Ford and Dodge use warmed over car automatic transmissions. Chevy and GMC use a transmission that is used in 33,000 # heavy duty trucks built by Freightliner, Navistar, Peterbilt etc.

    My brother-in-law is the service manager at a very reputable auto/truck repair center here in the mid-west. He says that he sees lots of F-350's and Rams for tramsmission problems and the repairs are VERY expensive. They never see a problem with the Allison in the Chevy and GMC. He claims it basically goes forever.

    Looks like a no-brainer to me.
  • It is funny how one person has problems with one and others with the different ones. I own a 95' Ford and a 96' Ford F350's and a Dodge 1 Ton all with diesel motors.

    On the 95' Automatic have had quite a few problems with only 168k miles on it. The 96' just general maintence with 268k miles on it. Manual transmission, Same rear ends, and they both get about the same fuel mileage pulling close to the same loads.

    Now the 2000 Dodge that I have has had the same injector problem that I read someone else has had. Mine was $3400 with the conversion kit, and already had problems after about another 30k miles on it. Everyone always told me they got 20 to 25mtg, Mine is 4x4 and it only gets 17 when it is strictly hwy miles no load, 10 to 15 with a load. Both my Fords pull my 50' Fifth wheel way better that that dodge does. Now if it was a manual it prob would be better, I really don't like auto's pulling.

    I once had a 1990 Dodge with a 360 in it that the odometer stopped at 220k miles and I know I put another 30 or so on it before I parked it. It would still start after just sitting there, it only got 8 mpg so the Diesels took over. I think I am going to try a Chevy the next go around.... lol. New Fords are getting 5 to 10 mpg with those twin turbos.
  • I have three farm trucks that see hard daily use and regular towing duties. All have manual transmissions for their increased control over automatics not to mention their greater durability compared to current autos. My 2002 Chevy 2500 has the 6.0L gasoline V8 and is basically bulletproof and indestructible no matter how hard it gets used. It handles much better than my Ford and Dodge diesels since there is much less weight hanging over the front end. The 2005 Ford 250 has the powerstroke diesel which has been a strong runner as well, but is heavier than the Chevy and suffers in the handling department as a result. I recently went to my Chevy dealer to get a new 2500 duramax, and was told they do not come with manual transmissions anymore. This was a deal breaker for me, so I now have a 2008 Dodge 2500 Cummins with the 6-speed manual. Although the truck only has a few thousand miles on it, I like it the best of the three. The power is certainly there, and I prefer the ride over my Ford. Time will tell how it holds up in the long run. I wonder how many loyal Chevy owners have switched to Dodge and Ford because GM will not put manual transmissions in their new trucks?
  • cbrentscbrents Posts: 1
    I own a 2001 Duramax. With 178,00 miles on it it now sits in a Chevy Dealer with all of the injectors bad. Chevy extended the warranty on the injectors to 200,000 miles or 7 years. Guess what? I'm at 8. Now they admit that they have an injector porblem but they say 7 years is the life of an injector. Our company has owned 3 Ford Power strokes and we have run them 10 years 300,000 miles with no engine problems, just normal maintenace. I have just spent 2 hours on the phone with GM with no postive results. So what would I recommend? Anything but a Chevy.
  • The twin turbos are not the culprit of bad MPG's in the new Ford 6.4l trucks. It's the new emissions laws being passed by the EPA pushing for almost no NOX. In other words, they expect you to almost be able to put your lips up to the tailpipe and be able to breathe. Theoretically, the twin turbos could increase fuel economy if Ford was able to tune them correctly. The 7.3s had almost no emissions restrictions on them, that is the reason why they are so much better on gas.
  • So I've always had old trucks and its finally going to be time for me to buy a new truck this summer (2010) I am currently a college student and I also work for a construction company in the summer and on holidays. When I'm out at school the majority of my driving is in town. About twice a month I make the trip back home about 150 miles and hauling stuff in my 1/4 ton truck over the pass is killing it! The contractor that I work for has a 2002 Chevy 2500HD (gas) and a debris trailer that when loaded up is usually around 10,000lbs. The truck there is beat to hell and I hate driving it. I currently have to switch trucks all the time which is very irritating. After school I intend on getting into the trades and I need a good truck. Being that I'm in school I really don't have a ton of $ for repairs so i need something reliable! I need your guys help deciding. I've read a lot of bad things about the 6.0L in the Fords. But I'm not opposed to a Ford. WHAT BRAND AND ENGINE SIZE WILL BE BEST? I don't want a crew cab or a long bed. Just simple extended cab and short bed. I've been stressing over the differences and I need some opinions from guys that have owned these trucks. THANK YOU ALL!!!
  • ezshift5ezshift5 West coastPosts: 858
    So I've always had old trucks and its finally going to be time for me to buy a new truck this summer (2010)

    Me too. The same 1982 diesel pickup for almost 25 years. I'm a pipeline inspector every now and then.......don't haul too much.

    But at 50+ MPG, I just can't bring myself to replace this little feller. Odo is near 300k but hopefully the 4-cylinder diesel will hang in there.

    best, ez....
  • catamcatam Posts: 331
    Based on what you descibe, any of the 1/2 ton v-8 modern gassers should be plenty of truck for you. The problem you descibe with your "OLD" truck not climbing mountain passes is really a thing of the past. I know what you are talking about, I live in Utah, and when I was in high school the measuring stick for almost any vehicle's power was "How fast can you go over the top of Parley's Summit", for most 70's and early 80's vehicles the range was 20-55 MPH unloaded. By way of comparison, I haven't owned a vehicle in the last 10 years that can't do at least 55, most handle 65 or better, although most in lower tranny gears than overdrive.

    FWIW, my 09 Duramax diesel could care less about the mountain, 6th gear 80 mph unloaded with very little throttle. I can tow my tripple rig of boat and travel trailer ~ 8500 # at 70 mph (I don't drive this setup any faster than that anywhere), although I do need to be in 4th gear while towing up that hill.

    My 03 Suburban 5.3L v8, 4 spd auto (sold), towed the boat ~6500# over the top at about 50 mph in 2nd gear IIRC.

    The only thing you might consider is that many of the used 1/2 ton single cab short bed trucks out there have v-6 or the smallest v-8s available at the time they were made.

    So in GMC or chev look for the 5.3L V8, Ford 5.4 L V8, Dodge 5.7L Hemi V8 (don't buy a dodge v8 prior to the Hemi redesign or you will be dissappointed with the power), toyota 5.7L I force v8, Nissan 5.6 L V8.
  • If it has not been mentioned, look at Edmunds Heavy Duty Truck Pull Off for the last 4 years. Wow! It is all there!
  • cooknmamacooknmama Posts: 1
    edited October 2010
    My husband is going to buy a 2011 1-ton duramax or a 1-ton dodge/manual trans. Anyone have any info about comparison of engines and undercarriage/tire rods/u-joints, etc.? I own a chevy 3/4 ton and prefer chevrolet due to the comfort and ride compared to a dodge but he has an 2001 dodge diesel with 230K miles and loves it. Any info is appreciated.

    He will be using it for a feed/farm truck and will put a Dew-Eze bed on it.
  • I owned 9 toyotas,and traded a 03 Tundra for a 06 Dodge Cummin,I had my leg in a cast from a motorcycle accident,and one of the 4, o2 sensors went out.I usually fix this myselfe. They charged me a wopping 500 bucks,I was so pissed,I never changed nothing but brakes on the ones I owned,but parts art too high.I paided 29K for the Tundra got 21K trade for the dodge that was 44K and they nocked 10K off .So for 20K I got a new Cummings with 100K warranty,and love it untill they raised diesel more than regular.Thank obama another stupid move.dewey11
  • easy as it is to blame...obamablame....think about why diesel is more or less.........really you can blame can you really blame obama? who regulates this stuff anyways? You have 9 toyotas, so don't complain, and stop the blame ..........did I acknowledge your big a## DODGE CUMMINGS? HMMMMM. enjoy the ride, cause you are lucky in this world to have one, let alone more than nine! PS Hope leg healed up strong....Peace.
  • nilocniloc Posts: 1
    Question for hi7echredneck
    What sort of truck gave you....... hi7echredneck....50mpg.
    Please give all the information as I will look out for one it would be just what I'm looking for,
    Please tell me it was a 4x4 and that they are still about/still making them.
    Did you have to do anything to it to get that gas mpg ?.

    Anyone else getting that sort of mpg out of a 4x4 ?.
    If so please tell me what 4x4 you are driving.
  • paquin64paquin64 Posts: 1
    edited April 2011
  • gmcustsvcgmcustsvc Posts: 4,252
    A couple of our most popular models are the Chevrolet Silverado and the GMC Sierra. There are still many on the road proving their longevity! I’d suggest checking out those two vehicles.

    GM Customer Service
  • mmargoliesmmargolies Posts: 1
    I've owned Toyota, Ford, Chevy and two Dodges. My current one is a 2500 HD Crew Cab Diesel standard bed and it's our family car. My wife drives a nice crossover AWD but my adult sized college age kids all prefer to go places in the truck. We even prefer it on long trips over my wife's car.

    We have had very few issues, mostly routine service type work like new tires or brakes and I love the Gas milage I get on the freeway. I have never run into a hill where I could not drive it as fast as I wanted to. My only regret is not getting the longer bed.

    Now that it's 5 years old and still running very strong the only issue I have is the driver's site seat is starting to show some stretching at one seam that I'm sure will tear someday. Other than that it has the normal scratches from parking lots that any car would have.

    If we buy another one someday it would be between Ford and Dodge as I'm taking a stand not to buy from GM until they pay back all the loans and the government sells all its stock in GM. And I mean pay back the tax payers with GM profits not by taking another government loan to pay off the first one like they did last time with the first loan.

    Anyway I could not be more happy with my Dodge, my wife loves it, my kids love it, and I get all kinds of truck envy even after six years of wear from car driving guys who wish they had a truck.

    Once in a while some over paid desk jockey will try and criticizes me over gas millage, first I ask what their BMW or Mercedes gets on the freeway, when I beat them at my 23.2 MPG they shut up.

    I had a 2001 Chevy Suburban and loved the comfort but had terrible MPG and it could not tow as easily as my 2500 HD.
  • I will tell you my experience. I drove a 1994 Dodge dakota from the day it was new until last year, I retired it at 338,000 miles as it broke down in front of the Dodge Dealership. I pulled in a purchased a 2006 Dodge 2500 cummins with very low miles. With in the last year, the A/C has gone out 4 times, drivers seat belt locked me in and never released ( purchased a new one for $50), it wears 80K mile tires out in under 20k miles, injector lines rattle and need tightening at times, replaced the transmission at 92k miles and again needed replacment at 120K miles, at 122K miles now has a rattle and is missing terrible (could be bad fuel in all fairness). Stock the truck was getting 14 mpg and with a BullyDog program I average 22 mpg and have more power than needed. The truck will carry and pull anything, If you want a work horse buy the dodge but dump it at 100k miles. if you want a few hundred thousand miles of dependable driving but smaller load pulling ability buy a chevy. My father 2006 duramax has been flawlessly operated until this very day but gets 11-12 mpg even with the same program and my cummins will spank the duramax and send it home but will eat another transmission doing it. I hope some of this is of help.
  • I'm looking to buy a 2000 Ram 2500 4x2 Long Bed with the 5.9L Diesel. It's an automatic It has 221k. Only has had 2 owners, it has a Carfax on it and it looks clean.

    I plan on either getting a travel trailer 2500-3000LBs or getting a truck camper of about the same weight. Both dry weights.

    I posted a link below with the sticker on the door that talks about weight limits and such. Would either of those 2 options be ok?

    Front: 4500LBs
    Rear: 6084LBs

    GVWR: 8800LBs

    Here's the link to the car: 1f7ba5/default.html


  • steverstever Posts: 52,462
    A reporter would like to speak to someone who recently bought a used large truck or large SUV. If you have purchased a used large truck or SUV in the past 6 months, and you are willing to discuss your decision with a reporter, please email [email protected] no later than 1 p.m. Pacific/ 4 p.m. Eastern Wednesday, April 18, 2012 with your daytime contact information.
  • I have a 2002 Chevy Silverado 2500 HD, crew cab, 4x4, fanciest interior w/heated leather seats, tow package, etc and it was made in Canada. It gets about 15 aorund town and 18 on the freeway. I've made multiple cross country trips in this truck, alone and with a friend, and love driving it. It has 120,00+ miles, mostly due to having been deployed x 2 years when it was parked. I've also required little maintenence; did all of the oil/fuel filter changes myself until I lost vision in one eye, and then fuel filter placement (always a pain), made doing it myself almost impossible. Have maintained service at a good garage after vision problem. No problems with fuel injectors. Had a pin-hole size leak in a fuel line; caused problems with starting, which haven't happened since fuel line replaced in '12. Both front axle seals replaced after one leaked in '07.
    Have driven older Fords ('96) and Dodge ('95). Like ride, turning, comfort of my truck better.
    Keep it or get new one, due to ever rising cost of disel?
  • I took 16 minutes trying to soak in this entire thread which began a few years ago.

    Looking for a pickup to buy in 6-18 months. I'm looking for a reliable diesel. I tend to keep my cars for years. Some of the comments that I have read here point to the longevity of these engines. But it seems that the comments made suggest that the Rams need transmissions anywhere from 100 to 150k. And somewhere else I read the Chevy Duramax tends to last longer. I am open to open both brands.

    I drove a cummins 6.7 yesterday in the ram 2500. I loved it. But then the salesman also said that at some point in the year the 2013 ram 1500 will definitely have a diesel engine. Most likely the one used in the VM engines used in European jeeps.

    So now I am faced with choosing among three types. I'm excited about the 1500 getting diesel but before anything else, can anyone else offer new insight onto the long-term reliability of the Chevy Duramax compared to the Cummins compared to the VM engine?
  • KCRamKCRam Mt. Arlington NJPosts: 3,516
    Chrysler is indeed seriously considering the VM diesel (3.0L V6) that will also be used in the 2014 Jeep Grand Cherokee. Hooked to the ZF 8-speed, the Ram 1500 diesel should get amazing fuel economy for a full-size truck.

    While the Allison is certainly an excellent transmission, GM has the 6.6L Duramax pretty much at its upper limits, and will likely have to introduce a new one soon to meet future regs.

    The Cummins was re-engineered in 2007 when it went from 5.9L to 6.7L, and with a 350,000-mile-to-overhaul rating, it's pretty much bulletproof. The Chrysler 68RFE transmission behind the Cummins in the 2500 has actually been a very durable transmission since its introduction.

    Since your window is up to 18 months, my advice would be to wait until the redesigned Silverado/Sierra is introduced, then compare to what Ram is offering before you make your final decision.

    kcram - Pickups/Wagons/Vans+Minivans Host
  • Thought I would share insight. The 2014 Jeep Grand Cherokee is supposed to be getting a 3.0L VM with the ZF 8-speed which will be out before Summer most likely. Currently the closest relative in fuel economy is the BlueTec MB's on the market, but those are without 8-speed. So they are using the same combo in the truck and will be a late available with crazy fuel economy. Then for the 2013 Ram HD 2500 and 3500 6.7L Cummins, you can opt for a heavy duty Aisin Transmission that puts out 850 Torque but not sure if it can be ordered right away from factory. Currently they are not offering them as builds until about January/February. VM has been around for a little while, not sure about the serious longevity like the Cummins, but they have been producing for a quite some time and use in a lot of their products around the world. Then with Aisin now on board from the heavy duty, it should probably be a no-brainer on which one to go with. They just announced the HD Trucks a few weeks ago with all of this info.
  • Both are great trucks. The Alison transmission is a force to be reckoned with. But if it came down to it, Cummins is the way to go. Cummins has a longer track record. While the Duramax engine may outperform the 6.7 Cummins in most areas, the reliability and the longevity of the Cummins has time and time again proven to be far greater than the Duramax. One thing the Dmax falls short of is towing up a steep grade. The Cummins will go and go and go until it runs out of fuel. Also, the transmission behind the 6.7 Cummins has proven to be a pretty durable transmission as well. Fuel milage I have found to be about the same between both trucks. Now, the Cummins is noisier, but you are driving a diesel truck. Hope this helps.
  • I know that this is an older thread, and the OP probably has already bought a truck, maybe 2 by now, but just wanted to add my 2 cents for someone else trying to decide on a diesel truck. When it comes to work trucks there are only 3 to consider Ford, Chevy, and Dodge. All three are great trucks, however there are some things to consider:

    Of the three Dodge has the best engine. Made by Cummins the engine is itself is very impressive. Ford I would say has the second best engine in the Powerstroke (very stout and powerful diesel). The trick to the Powerstroke is LEAVE IT ALONE, everyone who is complaining about the engine needing constant repairs has also chipped it and modified it. If you leave it stock you will have all the power you need and won't have nearly the repair bills (guys who chip a truck so they can drag race it need to be horse whipped for ruining a fine truck). Chevy Duramax is a nice engine, has long lasting service, but under load generally doesn't have the power of a Cummins or Powerstroke.

    Now if we all rode around on top of the engine block Dodge would be the way to go, however we need a frame, axles, transmission, ect... Of the three Chevy has the best transmission hands down. Ford transmissions usually don't have too many issues and are stout. Dodge transmissions are dog crap plain and simple. You want to quote "I got 500K out of my Cummins engine in my Dodge" -- how many transmissions did it take to get you there? Replacing a tranny for a diesel engine isn't cheap- a buddy of mine almost went bankrupt trying to keep his RAM 3500 on the road.

    Frame wise in my experience Dodge trucks have weaker frames than Chevy or Ford. Seen a lot of Dodge 2500 and 3500 trucks with bent/straightened frames. Both Chevy and Ford have strong frames.

    So the break down is buy a Chevy or a Ford. I personally have a 1999 F250 Super Duty with a 7.3 Powerstroke Turbo Diesel (stock) and have put 450K miles on it hauling everything from horses to tractors to sawdust (I got mine used with 150K on it, but jumped at it as it had never been modified). It is still running super strong and doesn't blow a ton of black sh*t into the air whenever stressed. A buddy of mine bought a '09 3500 Cummins Turbo Diesel dually and people can praise the Cummins engine all they want to, but if the truck is in the garage because the drive-train is crap that engine isn't doing the truck owner any good. He sold it after only having it for 3 years, but in that three year span he put 5 transmissions in it, 3 transfer cases, and 6 rear differentials. He never had that trouble with his old Chevy 3500, so its not his driving, and his old Chevy never had any problems with the loads we haul. Due to his truck being in the shop so much my truck had to do a lot of double duty and took it in stride.

    The Cummins is a really good engine, but Dodge stocks their trucks with crap drive-train and a weaker frame. Dodge has the worse dog crap transmissions in the industry, so what good is that awesome Cummins engine if the truck is broke down? I highly recommend Ford F250 and F350 Super Duty or Chevy 2500 or 3500. Both are great trucks that you can work for many, many years and and many, many miles.
  • steverstever Posts: 52,462
    A reporter is looking to talk with a Texas resident who's in the market for a new pickup truck. If you're able to help, please contact [email protected] with your preferred contact info by Thursday, September 26, 2013.
  • Didn't Dodge upgrade the frame and suspension for 2013?
  • All 3 manufactures are constantly upgrading their trucks. Every year there are frame, suspension, engine tweaks. Heck the new 6.7 Cummins, 6.7 Powerstroke, and new Chevy all make my '99 7.3 Powerstroke look weak (Horsepower and Torque ratio ratings). When it comes down to it though under load, while pulling 14-16K lbs the extra "power" of the new engines feels the same as my 7.3. Those trucks can take off faster and accelerate better empty, but under load the old 7.3 still can't be beat. FYI you try to accelerate fast with 16K lbs load your going to take lots of years off your truck, no matter what brand you are driving.

    As far as Dodge upgrading their frames, every year Dodge claims best in class this and best in class that, and every year when they are all rated head to head Dodge comes up last. The Cummins is a great engine, but Dodge still hasn't gotten their trucks up to par overall. Did they correct all the problems of past years with their upgrades in 2013 and new 2014 line? Enough time hasn't past to give a definitive answer yet. I can tell you that the 2013 Ram Cummins turbo diesel still has transmission (and overall trans-axle ie: transmission, transfer case, front and rear differentials, drive shaft) problems (more so than Chevy and Ford combined- just look up the raw numbers online), but haven't heard much about the newer frames yet.

    I guess it also depends what you want to use your truck for. If its just going to be jacked up to the point you can't fifth wheel hitch it and can't work it anymore heck you don't need anything bigger than a 1500 or 150 and any of the "power three" will suit your needs. If you want to take it to county fairs and drag race it, and enter short distance heavy pull competitions I would actually recommend a Dodge for that. You chip a 3500 Cummins turbo diesel, they will roll coal more than any other diesel, and take off faster than darn near anything else. For short distance pulls a chipped Cummins is going to win more than it looses. Where Dodge looses their reputation is you take that same county fair truck-pull winning chipped Dodge, put it on the through way with a 15-19K lbs load and tell it to travel a few thousand miles (say east coast to west coast) and its not going to fair well at all, will probably have some trans-axle problems, not to mention your going to be rolling so much coal your only going to get 4 or 5 mpg (when a diesel rolls coal its nothing more than unburnt diesel fuel going straight out your exhaust). You want a workhorse for hauling the heavy loads long distance there really is only 2 choices Chevy or Ford.

    A little long winded but I hope it helps. You can never know too much about the trucks your looking at buying. It is also important to know what you want to use your truck for and not do something to it that is going to make its primary function useless. If you want to tow don't lift it, and don't chip it. You can't pull the heavy loads with a TT and no goose neck is going to hitch to a super lifted truck. Keep in mind too when your looking a a lift kit - how high are you going to want to lift something to put it in your truck's bed? Regardless of what make truck you buy if you want maximum life and want maximum dependability while towing DON'T CHIP YOUR TRUCK. Chipping adds lots of HP, torque, ect.. But no chipped truck is going to tow long distance better than a non chipped factory truck. And chipping is going to make your engine run harder and put extra strain on it and your whole trans-axle assembly causing decreased life expectancy. You want tire burn-outs, rolling coal, big short distance pulling power (ie truck tug of wars) then by all means chip and mod the heck out of it. Just don't expect it to last very long.
  • So I'm to understand that your friend's Dodge went thru 1.6 transmissions per year, 2 differential per year, and a transfer case every year? Pardon me sir, but that sound like a tall story. But I've heard it all from the Ferd 7.3 nut jobs that are convinced it's the greatest engine ever made. Now a little about me: I actually drive my Dodge 6.7 Cummins hooked up to a heavy object. I actually go down the road with this heavy trailer, the way the truck was designed to be operated, within the specifications, and imagine this, I've never bent, broke, or even had a single thing go wrong with the truck. I guess I was lucky and they gave me a Dodge that was actually built in the Ford factory...
  • Just a few myths to dispel here. Both the Ford and the Dodge trucks come equipped with Dana live axels. The Dodge 3500's have a Dana 80 vs. the Fords Dana 70. So I doubt the rolling stock on either truck is more or less dependable. As far as the Dodge transmission problems: the Dodge transmission has manual adjustments that need to be serviced at certain intervals. Most owners neglect this very easy and quick item of maintenance and the tranny suffers. In fact, most Dodge dealers are unaware of this service requirement, so the service is neglected. IF properly serviced the tranny will last just as long as any Ford tranny of equal duty. Now, the newer 6 speed tranny that is coupled to the 6.7 Cummins is self adjusting. This tranny has been problem free from introduction in 2007. Keep in mind also that even the mythical Allison tranny is not problem free! AND the Allison is far more expensive WHEN it falls prey to abuse and mishandling. Ford Engines: I'd like to point out the fact that Ford has had 4 different diesel engines in 10 years. The 6.0 was a terrible failure AND Ford refused to stand behind the engine, placing blame on Navistar. The next failure was the 6.4 which ultimately ended the relationship with Navistar. The Newer 6.7 (Ford Made) hasn't been in service long enough to have established any real record, but I will say it looks better than the last two. Thousands of Ford guys go to considerable effort to install Cummins engines in their Ford trucks. If there has EVER been a Ford engine installed in a Dodge truck, it has escaped my attention... I expect the same could be said with regard to the Duramax.
    I'm former GM fan, but my last two experiences left me swearing to never go there again. Interiors seem to lag about 5 years behind Dodge and Ford in both quality as well as features.
    My opinion: All three trucks are fairly dependable, each having abilities and features that vary slightly. Yes, the GM and Ford will out drag race the Dodge... But I have never drag raced my trucks, so I guess I really don't care about that. I'll say this: Nothing pulls like a Cummins, and IF you have really ever pulled with these trucks (and trust me I have!) you will come to the same conclusion. An in-line 6 cylinder diesel makes torque in a way that a v-8 just cannot match. Ever seen a v-8 in a semi truck?
    In the end, each of us has to make a decision that matches up with our unique mission requirement for the truck. Yes, I own a Dodge and I could not be happier. I wouldn't buy either of the other two options even if they were half the money. I refuse to believe that the Dodge has any problems that are any different than the other two. They are all machines, and machines are never perfect. I refuse to believe that the Dodge isn't up to the challenge of cross country pulling. Our Dodge has pulled our 14,000 pound Fifth Wheel all over the country flawlessly!!
  • KCRamKCRam Mt. Arlington NJPosts: 3,516
    As a 2005 Ram 3500 owner, I can tell you with no doubt that they have not had Dana axles since 2002. They began using AAM axles with the 2003 models, same as GM... American Axle & Manufacturing is the former GM axle division which was spun off as an independent company.

    KCRam - Pickups/Wagons/Vans+Minivans Host
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