V6 or V8 ?

sirkeatssirkeats Member Posts: 3
I'm shopping around for a used truck (looking to spend around $1600) and am not really sure if I need a V8 or if a V6 is plenty for my needs.

I'll be towing mostly a whitewater raft that I tow now with my tiny old-school Nissan pickup (4 banger) so I know a V6 will be fine for that, but I'm being given a small 16' camper-trailer by my in-laws and want to make sure I don't have any issues towing that on occasion as well.

I'm not sure what the weight is on the camper-trailer... I only know that it's 16 feet long.

Any input would be greatly appreciated. Thanks!


  • 12ozcurls12ozcurls Member Posts: 65
    well ur not going to find very much in that price range...as far as v6 vs. v8, well, its always better to have extra power and not need than to need extra power and not have it..older chevys ('88-'98) come to mind although depending on what part of the country u live in, it might be a rust bucket...a 1500 would be plenty. there's quite a few of those around and they are dependable and easy to fix if anything does go wrong...
  • sirkeatssirkeats Member Posts: 3
    oops. sorry... that's supposed to read $16,000 NOT $1,600.

    ya... not gonna get much truck for 1600... lol.
  • dustykdustyk Member Posts: 2,926
    Power is in the eye of the beholder.

    When I was very young I drove various medium trucks, including a 1949 White 6 cylinder boxed and a 1960 C60 Chevy medium flat bed. I typically hauled between eight and ten thousand pounds and both trucks did an admirable job. I once had 14K on that old C60 and still managed to get from point A to B with no problems handling hills and traffic.

    There's a guy around here with an old ('86-'91 vintage) Dodge 6 cylinder 1/2 ton pick up that carries bricks, stone and concrete blocks all day long. He's probably replaced a lot of springs, but the 6 cylinder handles it fine.

    Most people...including myself...don't really need a V8, much less a large V8, but just prefer to have the power. Speed (ie: acceleration) is very important to many people.

    In actuality a 6 cylinder in my truck would meet my requirements just fine, especially since I've really never loaded or towed to the maximum rating. Even if I did a six cylinder would be able to do the job, albeit without the reserve power most people like. I opted for a V* because like most, I wanted the feeling of power.

    Best regards,
  • 12ozcurls12ozcurls Member Posts: 65
    oh well then shet dude, skys the limit. Although I would look for the best deal not the whether its a V-6 or V-8. Lots of good stuff to choose from. ummm...lets see... the 4.8L Chevy V-8 in the '99-'06 1500 is a pretty good balance between power and fuel efficiency. You could probably get one of those for around $5,000-$8,000. Ummm another excellent choice would be a 2003 and up Toyota 4runner with the new 4.0L V-6 or it also comes with a very nice 4.7L V-8 although it's kinda of ugly. It's also very capable off-road. The Nissan Exterra is on of my favorites, very nice rig, plenty of power. The Toyota Tacoma is also a good rig. Also comes with the 4.0L V-6, although my friend has one of those in crew cab long bed form and its kind of a slug but it will get the job done. Just make sure you find one with a tow package.
  • sirkeatssirkeats Member Posts: 3
    thanks for the info!!!

    will have a look around and see what i can find.

    thanks again!
  • boaz47boaz47 Member Posts: 2,751
    If you go to a RV dealer they will show you a book with recommendations on what you need to tow just about anything you want. Remember the tow rating on most vehicles is a maximum amount and you do not want to exceed 2/3 of that amount. Also once you get to the Half ton trucks there is almost no fuel mileage benefit with a V-6. So you might as well get a V-8 just in case you decide you like towing a trailer and want to move up to something bigger than a 16 foot trailer. Remember part of the towing package is the ability to pull the trailer through the air. What I mean by that is remember how much resistance a trailer adds when you are pulling it at speed. While a V-6 Tacoma may have plenty of power to pull 3000 pounds in town or to the boat dock how will it do when you are in a head wind and you have a 8x8 box pulling at you. As someone said earlier it would be better to have the power at a time like that than to not have it and wish you did.
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