Tell me about trucks



  • For the first time in my 33 years, I’m faced with buying a “new” new vehicle. Everything up till this point has been either preowned or a hand me down. I’ve always wanted a truck of some kind or another but it was never in the cards.

    Now it is, so I come to you, a group of like minded individuals for some input.

    My current car, a Nissan suv had an engineering flaw in it. The radiator leaks into the transmission fluid and corrodes the gearing/valves/whatever. Nissan knows this and went out of their way to avoid recalling it. Fuck them with a baseball bat. Other than that, I have no preconceived notions of Ford/Chevy/ram/whatever. As I understand this is mostly a matter of personal preference.

    I’m thinking something in the F150/1500/Tundra size range. I’m going to want a crew cab. I’d like 4wd. I don’t tow anything so I don’t need a huge v8, but that said I don’t mind the notion of a smallish diesel due to the better fuel economy and cheaper fuel prices. (I’m not actually sure what the difference is between gas and diesel maintenance and costs. Is it similar?)

    So what have been your experiences? What should I avoid? What did you experience in terms of maintenance and repairs?

    Thanks for the thoughts



  • @tackyp
    I currently drive a Chevy Silverado 1500 and it’s by far been the best truck I’ve ever owned. It has the 5.3 that drops cylinders when you get to a steady cruising speed. I average around 23 mpg with my normal running around that I do. Not sure what it would get on a long road trip where it was strictly hwy miles. I’ve never owned a Ford F-150 but my dad has had several of them one of which has over 300,000 miles on it and no major repairs. I did have a F250 diesel one time and hated it. The damn thing was haunted by mechanical demons, transmission problems constantly, front end issues, and electrical ghost. The damn windows would just roll down on there own going down the road, and the lights would flash. It was very expensive to work on as well, I never had any engine problems but heard it would have been extremely expensive if I had.

    I think your on the right track by saying it’s all personal preference, your going to have good and bad examples of both.



  • The use of quotes around "new" leaves me confused. Are you talking "new" to you or brand new, 0 miles new?

    Do you know what size bed you want? Generally there is a 5.5' option and a 6.5' option. The exact length changes from brand to brand. The 6.5' option isn't really anymore expensive, but they are harder to come by in a crew cab truck. I had to do a lot of searching for my 2014 Crew Cab Silverado with a 6.5' bed. I wanted the 6.5' bed to load an atv and close the tailgate as well as bring home longer sticks of lumber without needing the trailer. GM recently changed from the extended cab to the double cab. Rear leg room is about the same but the rear doors are completely separate from the front (you don't need to open the front door to open the rear) and there is a pillar between the front and rear doors adding strength back into the cab.

    Currently the only half ton truck with a diesel engine on the market is the Ram ecodiesel. You will get a small bump in improved fuel economy. It does not sound like it is an issue for you but the Ram ecodeisel is not geared for towing.
    The traditional reasons for going diesel don't really stand up anymore. Diesel is commonly more expensive per gallon then gasoline nearly all the time now. In the past a diesel engine would last forever with very little maintenance. With the new emissions requirements diesel engines have become quite complex. Meanwhile gasoline engines have been proven to last for 300,000 miles + recently. There will be additional maintenance cost involved in a diesel and you are going to pay quite a premium for the diesel engine option over the gas engine.

    Ford has a small 3.6L turbo charged engine. I believe the other standard engine is the 6.0L engine. I had a 2013 F150 with a 6.0 for about 6 months last year. In that short time I had to repair/ replace a few things on it. I believe my salesperson lied to me, as after a little more research I found out it was previously registered in Canada, (not a local trade like I was told) and I think it was used in the sand mines up there.

    Currently I am driving a 2014 Silverado with the 5.3L engine. I can regularly average 20+ mpg highway and 18 to and from work/ around town. The other GM engine would be the 4.3L 6 cylinder.



  • Get a 3/4 ton. Even if you don't need it. Half ton's just break down frequently. Their suspensions are weak. If you need a truck, get a real truck. If you don't need a truck, then buy an SUV or a subaru outback or something.

    All vehicles suck right now. That's basically a fact. It comes down to which one sucks the least, and then how much money you want to stick into aftermarket parts to make it not suck as bad. That's the predictable result when every company caters to the lowest common denominator with every single product they release.

    It also depends on what you want to do with this thing. It kinda sounds like it will be a glorified grocery getter. Intended use matters a LOT. I don't tow much, but I get off the beaten path a lot. So I had to buy the toughest truck I could find, with front/rear e-lockers and low gears, and then throw a bunch of aftermarket shit at it. ... and I'm still not happy. This thing needs about another 200 horse power and all the nanny-state bullshit disabled before it would be really functional. The greed-filled assholes making decisions at these automotive companies don't give a shit about what I want. They just want to build more grocery getters for the city pukes.

    3oka5a2h.jpg



  • 3/4 ton is a must for me...and the only thing I tow is a 5,000lb tractor. Like said...they are just better built trucks. I also would not want to do without a diesel. The newer diesels scare me...but many people have made them work. I personally like my 7.3 that does not need a cat-delete, def-delete, etc.

    Also...5.5 ft. is not a bed. It is a grocery box. 6.5 ft is not a bed...it is a toy box. I have an 8' bed and wouldn't want smaller. an 8' sheet of plywood lays flat in my truck...as it should.



  • I got a great piece of advice when I was in the market for another item and I believe it applies to purchasing a truck as well. Buy for what 95% of your needs are and rent the difference. I've used that thought process for off road tires and other purchases as well. If you are going to do city driving and you get a crew with an 8' bed you will need 3 lanes to do a U turn. If you only have two lanes and you hop the curb a few times the right front bearing ends up going. Parking this beast in the city will be a PITA.

    if you are out in the country then an 8' is the cats butt for hauling everything. I'm kinda in the market for a new truck myself. I have a 2000 Dodge Ram Quad Cab Diesel 4x4 with just over 250K mi. I tow a boat that weighs about 7500 lbs loaded fueled with fishing gear. From my research I also agree that the new Ford 250 is a POS. Dodge has a great motor but transmissions are not the greatest. Historically they've had to detune the Cummins engine because the automatic transmission couldn't handle the horsepower.

    I'm seriously considering getting a new Dodge 2500 with a manual transmission because that engine will go for ever. The other thing on Dodge, they are really proud of their bells and whistles on their trucks and you will pay for those dearly. So I'm considering a Dodge Base 2500 Crew cab with a manual trans. I don't want too swank and interior that I will mess up after I get covered in fish guts and blood after a good day of offshore fishing.

    The Problem for me now is that fact that my truck is still running OK after I did a trans job about 50K miles ago. I fall back in love with he darn thing every time I figure out what the monthly payment on a new one would be. The other thing is I have about $3k in Ranch Hand front and rear bumpers on my truck that will not fit the new one. These bumpers are made out of 1/4" and 1/2" steel. Very solid bumpers.



  • I run Express 4X4 Truck Rental we rent trucks all over the country. Currently we have over 6000 trucks coast to coast. Most of our trucks are 3/4 ton crew cab 4x4 diesels. I can tell you each truck has strong and weak points. It also comes down to use, Towing, off road , plowing etc. If you are really looking for a 1/2 ton diesel all three will have by the end of 2019 model year available. I have driven the Ram 1500 diesel and the F150 diesel. Side note I would not buy a F150 diesel till there power stroke is proven out. Ford has had diesel motor issues on new model engines. The GM diesel will be in a GMC. The Ram 1500 diesel I drove for around 30k. On a road trip I went over 650 miles on a tank of fuel. I am not a fan of 6 cylinder gas engines in trucks they have to work way to hard. I have driven all of the 3/4 ton versions and 1 ton versions from the manufacturers both gas and diesel for long periods of time.
    Right now all manufactures are starting to concentrate on there truck / Suv lines as the trend is showing 64% of buyers are moving in this direction.
    The only off road truck I drove that handled about everything I threw at it was a Ford Raptor but I still got it stuck in 2 feet of snow. Ram is going to build a raptor challenger in the next couple years www.ramtrucks.com/en/limited-editions/ram-1500/rebel-trx/ could be interesting.
    Trucks are getting crazy expensive. The reason for all the bells and whistles is consumers buying them want it. Most are not real truck users.
    Best towing truck Chevy with Duramax / Allison combo. This truck has the lowest ground clearance.
    Ford F250 we have had motor issues with the diesels / you have to pop the hood and check air filter gauge all the time, critical for diesel. The gas engine turns the truck into a dud. Drives nice ,overall decent performer.
    Ram 2500 diesel motor (Cummings) is awesome. If you get an Aisin tranny option you will be happier. Best ground clearance. All around good performer. Power Wagon is a fun truck to drive. Yes it has a 6.4 Hemi.

    Any specific questions let me know and I will see if I can assist with some information.



  • @tpk936 said in Tell me about trucks:

    Power Wagon is a fun truck to drive. Yes it has a 6.4 Hemi.

    I wish it had a cummins.



  • @tpk936 said in Tell me about trucks:

    I run Express 4X4 Truck Rental we rent trucks all over the country. Currently we have over 6000 trucks coast to coast. Most of our trucks are 3/4 ton crew cab 4x4 diesels. I can tell you each truck has strong and weak points. It also comes down to use, Towing, off road , plowing etc. If you are really looking for a 1/2 ton diesel all three will have by the end of 2019 model year available. I have driven the Ram 1500 diesel and the F150 diesel. Side note I would not buy a F150 diesel till there power stroke is proven out. Ford has had diesel motor issues on new model engines. The GM diesel will be in a GMC. The Ram 1500 diesel I drove for around 30k. On a road trip I went over 650 miles on a tank of fuel. I am not a fan of 6 cylinder gas engines in trucks they have to work way to hard. I have driven all of the 3/4 ton versions and 1 ton versions from the manufacturers both gas and diesel for long periods of time.
    Right now all manufactures are starting to concentrate on there truck / Suv lines as the trend is showing 64% of buyers are moving in this direction.
    The only off road truck I drove that handled about everything I threw at it was a Ford Raptor but I still got it stuck in 2 feet of snow. Ram is going to build a raptor challenger in the next couple years www.ramtrucks.com/en/limited-editions/ram-1500/rebel-trx/ could be interesting.
    Trucks are getting crazy expensive. The reason for all the bells and whistles is consumers buying them want it. Most are not real truck users.
    Best towing truck Chevy with Duramax / Allison combo. This truck has the lowest ground clearance.
    Ford F250 we have had motor issues with the diesels / you have to pop the hood and check air filter gauge all the time, critical for diesel. The gas engine turns the truck into a dud. Drives nice ,overall decent performer.
    Ram 2500 diesel motor (Cummings) is awesome. If you get an Aisin tranny option you will be happier. Best ground clearance. All around good performer. Power Wagon is a fun truck to drive. Yes it has a 6.4 Hemi.

    Any specific questions let me know and I will see if I can assist with some information.

    Aisin trans was only available in 3500's in 2013 model years and later according to research I've done. I've also read that the service interval for the Aisin Trans is 30K miles which is pretty short.

    Weak Dodge/Ram trans in 2500's is one reason I was considering a Ram Truck with a Manual Trans. I understand the newer Ram trans are better but still not as stout as the Allison that comes in the Chevy.

    Thinking about a Chevy Diesel 4X4.... I can fix ground clearance with tires and a lift kit..



  • @martino1 If you want to tow the chevy is your truck. The aisin can be added to a 2500 now, but it is special order an can lead to wait times.



  • @tpk936 said in Tell me about trucks:

    @martino1 If you want to tow the chevy is your truck. The aisin can be added to a 2500 now, but it is special order an can lead to wait times.

    Something about tge simplicity of a manual appeals to me re towing. My understanding is a base crew Ram 4x4 stick can be had just over $40k new. I've seen 5 yo Ram trucks loaded going for more than that. Do you have hands on experience with an Aisin over 200k miles towing part time?



  • @martino1 Not over 200k. I personally only drive a truck for around 25-30k then flip into a new one. We sell all of our trucks at auctions. The miles range from teens to 100k on some but most of our trucks are sold before 45k . We try to keep the fleet fresh so most are 2017,2018 and 2019 model year arriving now. I am a Ram fan with the cummins diesel. One of my favorite trucks I drove was a 2500 Laramie mega cab. It was a cruiser. Some of our customers can be a little rough on the equipment. Manual is nice and simple. Our 2017 Ram SLT trucks with 30K miles sell for around 34 to 35k at auction. Rams with 50 to 75K miles sell for around 30-32k at auction,



  • Wow. I was not expecting this much input this fast, so first off thanks for that.

    I’m going to answer the big questions that got asked, then sorta summarize what I’ve been told this far.

    First off, I mean new new. Brand new. Zero miles new.
    As for intended use it will be primarily a grocery grabber and daily driver. I live in suburban America, and don’t need the truck for farm work. I’ll occasionally be hauling a couple sheets of plywood or sacks of dirt for projects around the house. Help dad tow his small boat. Gather wood for our cabin. Hauling my gear to and from the range, hunting and camping and occasionally dealing with rutted logging roads and shallow (18”) stream crossings. No cross country, Baja or overland style travel for me.

    Here’s what I’ve picked up from the comments so far.

    3/4 ton truck. I don’t think the japs make anything that big and the F250 sucks according to comments here, which means either the Chevy 2500 or the Ram 2500.

    Avoid the diesel in my use case. It’s hard to work on and more expensive.

    Be prepared to drop money into parts that don’t suck. Fine by me.

    This right here has limited the field by about half so thanks for that. Anything else is much appreciated.



  • F250's were great...as long as international was making the motors (7.3's).

    I wouldn't write of diesels that quick. After owning one, I don't want to go back to a gasser. The diesels have LOADS of power quick whereas you really have to mash on a gas engine to get anything out of it.

    Maintenance is marginally higher on diesels (more oil)...but not crazy.

    Diesels typically last much longer and have higher resale

    They are actually simpler motors than gas engines...but either way you just about have to have computer equipment to work on them anymore.

    Diesel engines are more expensive up front

    However...used 3/4 ton gas trucks have HORRIBLE resale. No one wants them...and it is for a reason.



  • @tpk936 said in Tell me about trucks:

    @martino1 Not over 200k. I personally only drive a truck for around 25-30k then flip into a new one. We sell all of our trucks at auctions. The miles range from teens to 100k on some but most of our trucks are sold before 45k . We try to keep the fleet fresh so most are 2017,2018 and 2019 model year arriving now. I am a Ram fan with the cummins diesel. One of my favorite trucks I drove was a 2500 Laramie mega cab. It was a cruiser. Some of our customers can be a little rough on the equipment. Manual is nice and simple. Our 2017 Ram SLT trucks with 30K miles sell for around 34 to 35k at auction. Rams with 50 to 75K miles sell for around 30-32k at auction,

    Are you bound by contract to sell Thru auction.



  • @martino1 No. I am bound by manufacturers to only sell current model trucks after they have been in my fleet 6 months do to discounts we receive for volume buys. I have sold units to friends and family and customers who where renting the trucks. We do no financing so makes it tough sometimes for people. If you have your own finance source I will sell for what we could sell for at auction.



  • @tackyp I would not write off a diesel. A diesel holds it value way better then gas. A diesel motor with 50k miles is just getting broke in, a gas motor with 30k miles is perceived to be wore out. A well maintained diesel motor will last a lot longer then the rest of the truck. Most people run a diesel well into 300k miles. There is some 1/2 ton diesel options available from all . If you are looking for a Jap truck Nissan has a 1/2 ton diesel. The motor is made by cummins. I drove the truck for a couple weeks was not impressed and I thought very expensive.



  • @tpk936 said in Tell me about trucks:

    @martino1 No. I am bound by manufacturers to only sell current model trucks after they have been in my fleet 6 months do to discounts we receive for volume buys. I have sold units to friends and family and customers who where renting the trucks. We do no financing so makes it tough sometimes for people. If you have your own finance source I will sell for what we could sell for at auction.

    Got any with a manual trans?



  • @tpk936 said in Tell me about trucks:

    I would not write off a diesel. A diesel holds it value way better then gas. A diesel motor with 50k miles is just getting broke in, a gas motor with 30k miles is perceived to be wore out. A well maintained diesel motor will last a lot longer then the rest of the truck. Most people run a diesel well into 300k miles.

    ^ listen to this man. He speaks truth!



  • I have a 2013 Ford F-150 4x4 super-cab (extended cab) with a V8 and I get 18.2mpg city and over 20mpg highway. I have owned Dodge Dakotas and my boss owns Rams and I can say the fuel economy doesn't compare to my Ford. I never got better then 12mpg city and 16mpg highway in my Dakotas, Rams are the same and with Dodge it doesn't matter if it's a 6 or 8cly the mpg will all be the same.

    I also own a 2000 Ram diesel and would not want the newer diesels with their EPA crap. if you need to replace the exhaust for any reason get ready to drop $4k on it. The extra expense of the DEF IMO is just stupid not to mention when it goes into regen mode the exhaust can light things on fire it gets so hot.

    That's my 2 cents.



  • Originally I wasn't going to get into the 2500 and diesel trucks but since it has been a point of discussion I figure I might as well way in.

    15 years ago when a 3/4 ton diesel was all the craze gas costed more then diesel. At that time the premium cost to get into the diesel option was not as much as it is now. All the emissions that have been added to those trucks over the last 15 years have really drove that price up. At that time you were lucky to average 15 mpg in a 1500 gas truck at highway speeds. The diesels of that age were breaking 20 mpg. Those trucks had no emissions on them. The first LB7 Duramax trucks just had a muffler most didn't even get a catalytic converter on them (even back then Cali had more stringent emission laws.) Now diesel costs more then gas, 1500 trucks are getting 20+ mpg and with all the emissions on the new diesels your happy to break 17mpg (that's assuming the DPF is not regenerating or even worse the DPF seems to always be regenerating because it is plugged up or some other issue that can never seem to be explained away).

    A lot of these issues can be solved, or at least used to be able to be solved, by deleting and buying a set of tunes to make the engine run better. I had a 2012 Duramax in stock form that I was lucky to get 15 highway with. (one of those trucks that was always regenerating for but it could never be explained why or fixed.) After I deleted the EGR, DPF, and DEF and installed new up-pipes, down pipes and exhaust system and installed new tunes I was able to hit 20 mpg highway. Of course the newer trucks are getting harder and harder to tune and delete the emissions components. The OEMs have made it harder for the aftermarket guys to accomplish this. In addition the EPA is starting to go after the aftermarket guys doing this. A few years back one of the bigger guys developing the engine tunes moved his operation to Canada. This past year another large, go-to company was fined by the EPA and made to promise they will no longer sell anything that violates emissions law.

    Around the same time the switch from plain diesel to low sulfur diesel to ultra low sulfur diesel was made. Ultra low sulfur diesel fuel is not nearly as much of a lubricant as plain old diesel was. That lubricity in the fuel was one of the reasons that diesel engines were known for there longevity. As time went on more and more electronics have also been added to diesel engines. How many people do you know of that are running early 2000 1500 trucks around with 2-300,000 miles on them with little to no issues? I know of a few, some of them are even farm trucks that get the snot beat out of them on the regular with little to no maintenance. The hard parts on vehicles are rarely the problem now. The expensive fixes are now electronics. Weather it is gas or diesel there are a lot of electronics to go wrong.

    Sure, a second gen Cummins engine is a much simpler engine when compared to a gas engine. Today's light truck diesel engines are a long ways from the old simple mechanically injected diesel engines of the late 90's and significantly more complicated. At the same time the quality in gasoline engines have come a long way. Sure there are some with problems, but so to did some of the diesel engines. The LB7 Duamax's had their injector problems, Powerstrokes had head gasket issues. When the LML Dmax (2011-2014) came out and they switched from the CP3 pump to a CP4, on some engines the pump would go out and take the entire fuel system with it. That could be just shy of a $10,000 repair bill.

    No doubt about it, they definitely hold resale value better. But then again you are paying nearly a $10,000 premium for the diesel option. When you go to sell or trade it in, it better be worth more then the gas option. Depending on how you payed (financing) it may have actually cost you more than that for the diesel option. People try to play the resale value off like it is some type of lucrative investment. I'm willing to bet you could stick that $10,000 into investments and be further ahead then you are on your resale value.

    I think that pretty much wraps up my thoughts on diesel vs gas. Getting late here so I will jot a few things down on 1500 vs 2500 tomorrow.



  • I don't have a new enough truck to push you one way or the other, as I drive a 98 dodge 2500 with the 12 valve cummins.

    What I can tell you is getting 10-12mpg with a 9,000lb 35' flatbed doesn't hurt my feelings, and I almost cry when i'm in a gasser that's constantly trying to find a gear, or needs to be at 4500rpm to have any sort of get up and go. Honestly I was worried about getting a diesel at first, not knowing anything about them, but I won't ever go back to gas. I've replaced a couple of parts (300,000 miles on mine) and it wasn't nearly as difficult as I thought it would be.

    Empty I'm around 12-16mpg city/highway, depending on my mood for that tank, but I'm no where near stock anymore. I would put me around 375-400hp and 750-800 torque. I'm also running slightly larger tires than stock and have 4:10 gears which kills my mpg unless I'm loaded. My brother's truck stock (similar engine/year) with a manual has gotten 23mpg highway and hovers around 18mpg for highway/city mix.

    When I go to a new truck, I know it's going to drink diesel. I'm not sure how @dddoo7 's 7.3 does in light snow on slippery surfaces, or in "snot" (slick mud 1-2" deep on firm but slick soil), but I would say a diesel needs to be a 4x4 unless you are pavement only. Both my 12 valve and a few duramax pickups I've driven are too front heavy to just rear wheel drive in those conditions.



  • Guys I want to thank you all again. If I had gone anywhere else I feel like this would have devolved into a ford vs chevy argument in the same way we argue 9mm vs .45

    I've had to do a lot of googling trying to figure out what some of these acronyms meant.

    Using the bullshit building tool on the dealer website I'm able to get the Ram and the Chevy to within a couple thousand of each other comparing the 1500 vs the 2500. That alone might be enough to get me to go 3/4 ton. Bigger bang for the buck

    I suppose the next thing to do would be to crawl over them at the dealer and see what feels best and compare their costs to own numbers.

    Two more points.
    Fuck Nissan. Never again.

    Can I press you gentlemen for some real MPG numbers? I'm finding 19.5 unladen as an average. I realize this is going to be secondary, but its still a consideration.

    And I'm still interested in whatever you have to say.



  • I few years back there were a lot of guys going to a 3/4 ton gas truck so that they could get a crew cab with a 6.5' bed. Now you can get a 1/2 ton truck with a crew cab and 6.5' bed.

    3/4 and 1 ton trucks are definitely built heavier than 1/2 ton trucks. For somebody that doesn't need that much truck it can also be a negative. I drove a 03 2500 for close to 8 years. When I sold that and got into a '12 2500 I thought the ride of that 2012 was great, and it was compared to the 2003 I was use to. Both of these were Chevy trucks with IFS, arguably the best riding 2500 trucks on the market. When I got into a 1500 truck I thought the ride was a bit better then the 2500. After driving that 1500 around for 6 months I was looking for something different. I was test driving both 2500 and 1500 trucks again. After getting used to a 1500 ride I quickly realized how bad the ride was in those 2500 trucks compared to the 1500. I mean, it really sucks if you are being honest about it.
    The 2500 is a heavier truck, with more torque. The heavier truck is going to wear out suspension parts faster then the 1500, especially in the diesel trucks. That heavier truck is going to wear tires out faster also. Don't expect much over 30,000 miles, especially if you are using it. Oh, and those tires are going to be more expensive to replace also.

    You can expect right around 20 mpg for the 1500 trucks. 2500 trucks are not required to publish fuel economy data as they are not considered a passenger vehicle. From what I have seen those trucks are commonly getting 15 mpg tops. The GM 6.0 seems like it gets 13-15 mpg no matter how you drive it or what you are towing.

    I drove a 3/4 ton diesel truck for the better part of 10 years. Last year I moved back to a 1500 gasser. The 3/4 truck I had at the time was an extended cab, and it just isn't practical to haul a kid around in a car seat/ booster seat in an extended cab. I needed to upgrade to a crew cab. At that time I wasn't willing to pay the extra coin to get into a diesel or 3/4 truck. Do I still miss my diesel? Yep. Having that power was awesome, but I definitely don't need it. Do I miss the 3/4 ton platform? Not really. This 1500 drives and handles a lot better then the 3/4 ton. I've been driving for nearly a year now and have been slacking on tire rotations. The wear on all 4 tires looks fine and even. Tire rotation used to be a every 3 month ordeal to keep wear even on all 4 corners. I did spend some money on a small lift to get some ride height back and about $400 on air bags to keep the back end from sagging when I tow or have any type of a load in the bed.
    I do use my truck as a truck. Right now I have just shy of 1000 lbs of steel on a pallet in the bed of the truck. That is a weekly occurrence. Every few weekends I have an atv in the back and driving on backwoods two lane roads with it. I have a 10,000 lb gvr trailer that I pull a 5,000 lb compact tractor around with semi-regularly (the main reason why I installed the air bags). The 3/4 ton suspension/ frame handled all of these activities better. But in stock format this 1500 was able to perform all these tasks with no issue and with the improvements to the suspension system this truck handles the just fine now also.

    For your use case I really see no reason for you to get anything more then a 1/2 ton truck.

    A note on the pricing you are getting when "building" a truck on OEM websites. Pay attention to what rebates are applicable to which vehicles. Often times some of the rebates and special pricing you see for 1/2 ton trucks is not applicable to 3/4 ton.



  • I can add that the 1/2 ton diesels I have driven would get in the 20mpg city and 25+ highway depending on how you pushed it.

    The Ram 2500 diesels I have driven average mpg for me is close to 20 with a 50/50 mix of highway and city driving.

    The gas trucks I have driven in the 3/4 ton range was around 10mpg city and 16mpg highway. If you tow with a gas 3/4 ton around 8mpg.

    I just got out of a GMC Denali 3500 with the Duramax and Allison and it was in the 19 to 20 mpg combined for me.

    I am driving a 2019 Ram 1500 with a 5.0 hemi right now and averaging 16.4 mpg. on the highway it was getting in the low 21 to 23 mpg. I have only taken one trip in it so far. I have only been driving for 3 weeks. Has around 1100 miles on it.

    MPG is a hard one for everyone drives differently. Put a heavy foot to it and it goes down. I will say I drive spirited and on highway avg 77 MPH.

    A diesel motor is an uptick of $7500 and the tranny another $1000 to go with the diesel.

    I have sold over 7500 trucks at auction in the last 2 years and the Diesel trucks real economic depreciation (what I paid for it and what I sold it for) is half of a gas truck same make and model.

    Tires can make a huge difference in MPG. They can also make a huge difference in conditions. The stock tires on a Ram 2500 are terrible. In wet conditions I can not back the truck up my driveway ( a little steep) without putting it in 4wd. Does not happen in a Chevy or GMC.

    You can also look closely at the rear (gearing ) in a truck. You can get some 1/2 tons with a 3.4 versus 3.7 and get better fuel economy.

    All I will say about the 6 cylinders in 1/2 ton trucks is every customer that asked us to get them for them to use wanted to give them back.

    DEF fluid is a pain in the a$$ to add to a Chevy / GMC.



  • @brittel said in Tell me about trucks:

    I don't have a new enough truck to push you one way or the other, as I drive a 98 dodge 2500 with the 12 valve cummins.

    What I can tell you is getting 10-12mpg with a 9,000lb 35' flatbed doesn't hurt my feelings, and I almost cry when i'm in a gasser that's constantly trying to find a gear, or needs to be at 4500rpm to have any sort of get up and go. Honestly I was worried about getting a diesel at first, not knowing anything about them, but I won't ever go back to gas. I've replaced a couple of parts (300,000 miles on mine) and it wasn't nearly as difficult as I thought it would be.

    Empty I'm around 12-16mpg city/highway, depending on my mood for that tank, but I'm no where near stock anymore. I would put me around 375-400hp and 750-800 torque. I'm also running slightly larger tires than stock and have 4:10 gears which kills my mpg unless I'm loaded. My brother's truck stock (similar engine/year) with a manual has gotten 23mpg highway and hovers around 18mpg for highway/city mix.

    When I go to a new truck, I know it's going to drink diesel. I'm not sure how @dddoo7 's 7.3 does in light snow on slippery surfaces, or in "snot" (slick mud 1-2" deep on firm but slick soil), but I would say a diesel needs to be a 4x4 unless you are pavement only. Both my 12 valve and a few duramax pickups I've driven are too front heavy to just rear wheel drive in those conditions.

    Any off-road type of driving requires 4x4 with a diesel. The combo of extremely heavy front end relative to the rear and the loads of torque the diesel engine is putting to the rear tires results in the front end not moving and the rear end slipping and sliding all over the place.



  • 4wd is a must for my truck. 2wd diesels get stuck in wet grass. Posi track is also very nice.

    99 f250 7.3L
    4 speed auto (new jasper at 194,000)
    198,000
    16 mpg empty highway
    14 mpg in town
    14 mpg highway with tractor/trailer (7000lb total)

    The ride is for sure rougher in a 3/4 ton



  • @dddoo7 said in Tell me about trucks:

    Posi track is also very nice.

    Lockers are nicer. ;)

    Without them, I'd have been stuck major time earlier this spring. These power wagons weigh just as much as the diesels.

    kmz7uGrh.jpg
    MRrRHSCh.jpg
    EFP41rah.jpg

    My truck is at factory height with aluminess aluminum bumper on front, aluminess steel rock slider steps on sides, and tdk steel bumper on back. I get 12.5-14mpg @65mph on highway. That drops to 10-11mpg at 80mph on interstate. If a 20+mph wind is hitting me and I'm doing 80 down the interstate, its about 6-7mpg. I'm running 35" 12.50 18's for tires.

    On the positive side... this truck can crawl most places. Put in low lock, push button to engage lockers, push button to disconnect swaybar. Take foot off the brake and off you go. It is literally amazing where this huge rig can get to.



  • Another thing I'll point out... while the 6.4 hemi in this p-wagon does suck some fuel, that is true. What is also true is that when you put that pedal down all the way...

    hyperspace_falcon.jpg



  • @orkan Don't forget those Ram boxes. Every time I switch trucks to a non Ram I hate not having those boxes.



  • @tpk936 said in Tell me about trucks:

    @orkan Don't forget those Ram boxes. Every time I switch trucks to a non Ram I hate not having those boxes.

    Yes! I love me some ram boxes.



  • I'm liking my 2000 Dodge Ram Diesel 4X4 all over again after reading some of the technical issues pointed out above. Its got 254K miles and I get about 18-20mpg if I keep it under 70mph. The truck came from the factory underpowered because of the crappy 48RE transmission in it. I was advised by my mechanic to keep it stock in order to get the most miles out of it so that's what I did. I'ts been hard following that advise since it came with only 220HP. I guess I'll keep it till I get past 400K mi unless something major lets go. The comment regarding the suspension is spot on in my case. I need new front springs for my truck partly because its age and partly because I have a heavy Ranch Hand bumper and brush guard. Its my understanding that the 2500 already has the same front springs as the 3500, I was thinking about going with a bit heavier spring to offset the heavy bumper. Seem to have some truck savvy guys here, Any Ideas?



  • @martino1

    I'll make a new thread with my thoughts on this so we can keep this one about new pickups.



  • @tackyp said in Tell me about trucks:

    Guys I want to thank you all again. If I had gone anywhere else I feel like this would have devolved into a ford vs chevy argument in the same way we argue 9mm vs .45

    I've had to do a lot of googling trying to figure out what some of these acronyms meant.

    Using the bullshit building tool on the dealer website I'm able to get the Ram and the Chevy to within a couple thousand of each other comparing the 1500 vs the 2500. That alone might be enough to get me to go 3/4 ton. Bigger bang for the buck

    I suppose the next thing to do would be to crawl over them at the dealer and see what feels best and compare their costs to own numbers.

    Two more points.
    Fuck Nissan. Never again.

    Can I press you gentlemen for some real MPG numbers? I'm finding 19.5 unladen as an average. I realize this is going to be secondary, but its still a consideration.

    And I'm still interested in whatever you have to say.

    never in your wildest dreams will you ever get 19.5mpg out of a Chevy or Dodge in the city mabey on a long cruse of the flattest part of a highway, mabey.
    As for my F150 I just pulled 5600lb for 1.5hr one way on the highway up and down hills and averaged 18.1mpg that's the same I get empty in the city, empty on the highway I get 21.6mpg. Those numbers will never happen with a Doge or Chevy. If your looking at gas mpg then look at Ford, looking at diesel then look at Dodge. I would go with 1/2ton unless you really need to pull heavy.



  • @datec said in Tell me about trucks:

    never in your wildest dreams will you ever get 19.5mpg out of a Chevy or Dodge in the city mabey on a long cruse of the flattest part of a highway, mabey.

    Pretty sure you're being wildly biased. I know several guys that get 20+ mpg with their chevy's and ram's. All it takes is a tuner, and they get even better than that.

    Hell, my truck in factory condition got 16-18mpg highway, and I don't accelerate as gentle as I should/could. Guys with ram 1500's get better than that. After adding a tuner, it typically goes up a couple mpg's.



  • @datec said in Tell me about trucks:

    @tackyp said in Tell me about trucks:

    Guys I want to thank you all again. If I had gone anywhere else I feel like this would have devolved into a ford vs chevy argument in the same way we argue 9mm vs .45

    I've had to do a lot of googling trying to figure out what some of these acronyms meant.

    Using the bullshit building tool on the dealer website I'm able to get the Ram and the Chevy to within a couple thousand of each other comparing the 1500 vs the 2500. That alone might be enough to get me to go 3/4 ton. Bigger bang for the buck

    I suppose the next thing to do would be to crawl over them at the dealer and see what feels best and compare their costs to own numbers.

    Two more points.
    Fuck Nissan. Never again.

    Can I press you gentlemen for some real MPG numbers? I'm finding 19.5 unladen as an average. I realize this is going to be secondary, but its still a consideration.

    And I'm still interested in whatever you have to say.

    never in your wildest dreams will you ever get 19.5mpg out of a Chevy or Dodge in the city mabey on a long cruse of the flattest part of a highway, mabey.
    As for my F150 I just pulled 5600lb for 1.5hr one way on the highway up and down hills and averaged 18.1mpg that's the same I get empty in the city, empty on the highway I get 21.6mpg. Those numbers will never happen with a Doge or Chevy. If your looking at gas mpg then look at Ford, looking at diesel then look at Dodge. I would go with 1/2ton unless you really need to pull heavy.

    The 2013 F150 6.0 I ran for about 6 months last year never netted me better then 17 mpg empty highway doing 70. Averaged around 15 mpg combined. That was factory ride height and tires. It was one of the reasons I got rid of it. The Chevy I'm in now has a small lift and slightly larger tires and runs circles around that particular Ford.



  • @orkan said in Tell me about trucks:

    @datec said in Tell me about trucks:

    never in your wildest dreams will you ever get 19.5mpg out of a Chevy or Dodge in the city mabey on a long cruse of the flattest part of a highway, mabey.

    Pretty sure you're being wildly biased. I know several guys that get 20+ mpg with their chevy's and ram's. All it takes is a tuner, and they get even better than that.

    Hell, my truck in factory condition got 16-18mpg highway, and I don't accelerate as gentle as I should/could. Guys with ram 1500's get better than that. After adding a tuner, it typically goes up a couple mpg's.

    My boss has a 2016 Ram 2500 4x4 (gas) and isn't getting better then 12.5mpg city empty, both my neighbors also had a 2005 Ram 1500 4x4's with Hemi's and neither of them could do better then that. They both got rid of them. One got a diesel and the other got a Ford F150 after I got mine and said the mpg's are a huge difference and loves it.

    Mine has a 5.0 and easily pulls either my loaded 14ft 6k# enclosed trailer or my 6k# 16ft utility trailer loaded. When I have to pull heavier I use my 2000 Dodge Ram 3500 4x4 diesel dually and use my 14k# dump which empty and pulling nothing never hit 20mpg ever but pulls anything I could want and the heaviest I have weighed on the scales is 25.5k#. The only down fall to that truck was the trans. After 3 of them and the truck only having 32k miles I told my wife to hold on to something this is gonna hurt and went with a full billet Goerend Trans, now that's a non issue.

    One of the BIG issues with the Gen2 Cummins 2000 included (but not mine) is the horse shit "53" block. Not all had them but the ones that did can and will eventually have a catastrophic failure that will result in motor replacement.

    My boss also has a 2013 Dodge 5500 flatbed diesel (just before DEF) that had the exhaust before DEF but after the regular exhaust. One month into owning it ran like shit then would take off and fall on it's face and chug in limp mode then stall. Nobody could figure what was wrong and on the 3rd dealer try the reps from Dodge stepped in and found the exhaust system had gotten plugged and had to be replaced (under warranty) cost of repairs $4k (no charge) had to have a new system installed. If this would have been the DEF exhaust system the cost would have been $7k. That goes for all new diesels not just Dodge. As for mpg's in the flat bed? absolutely horrible....
    As for Chevy's a friend of mine has a 2002 2500 diesel with an Allison when he pulls too heavy it goes into limp mode and will not come out unless you take it to the dealer to have a reset done. He's done it twice and had to have all the injectors replaced twice at a cost of $2300. He has since tuned it and put an exhaust on and claims 28-30mpg but I call crap because when I ask if he is getting 7-800mi out of a tank he never says anything.
    Another friend just bought a 1/2 ton Chevy 4x4 (black out series) and he is getting 15-16mpg city.

    So I'm not being biased just stating what I know first hand. I was never a Ford guy but the fact they are the only ones to keep what I still refer to as the "ex-cab" is the reason I got one and just love the mpg's and the ride is nice too with plenty of power for what I need it to do. So it's not a Chevy, Ford, Dodge thing with what I laid out one can take from it and make their choice was to what fits their needs.
    All of my trucks are stock except for the diesel's trans and the Ford is a steel body.



  • @martino1 said in Tell me about trucks:

    I'm liking my 2000 Dodge Ram Diesel 4X4 all over again after reading some of the technical issues pointed out above. Its got 254K miles and I get about 18-20mpg if I keep it under 70mph. The truck came from the factory underpowered because of the crappy 48RE transmission in it. I was advised by my mechanic to keep it stock in order to get the most miles out of it so that's what I did. I'ts been hard following that advise since it came with only 220HP. I guess I'll keep it till I get past 400K mi unless something major lets go. The comment regarding the suspension is spot on in my case. I need new front springs for my truck partly because its age and partly because I have a heavy Ranch Hand bumper and brush guard. Its my understanding that the 2500 already has the same front springs as the 3500, I was thinking about going with a bit heavier spring to offset the heavy bumper. Seem to have some truck savvy guys here, Any Ideas?

    If looking at the springs get the heavier ones that come with the Plow package. that will help off set the weight of the bumper.



  • @datec You're post is full of old trucks that have nothing to do with the topic at hand, and your tone is toxic and has no room for the reality that ALL brands turn out shit products these days.

    There are countless horror stories about chevy, ram, and ford. All one needs to do is look and you'll find them. That doesn't stop those 3 from being the only real choice when it pertains to buying a real truck.

    As for fuel economy... you know how many times I have heard someone bitch about economy, only to learn they are running 85 or 87 with ethanol? Or running the wrong kind of diesel for the season? People drive the big three brands and there are a ton of ranchers around here that overload the shit out of their trailers. All are happy enough with what they have. When they aren't, they buy something else. Dodge guys try fords. Ford guys try Chevy's, and around it goes. Some brands win one year and lose the next. For every story you have about ram's and chevy's getting crap mileage, I can tell you 5 about them getting good mileage. Rams, chevy's, and fords can all be alright.

    ... and in case you weren't aware, the OP is looking for a BRAND NEW truck, that means THIS YEAR... not old shit like you talk about in your posts. He also isn't going to be pulling... he's going to be driving around town.

    This thread is NOT going to devolve into some brand bashing bullshit. So you can take a hint and show yourself the door on this thread or I can show you the door on the entire forum. Your choice.



  • Fair enough.


  • administrators

    I have zero dog in the fight as they say but I drive a 2016 Subaru Outback. I love every part of it. I used to drive a 2003 Dodge Ram 1500 and thought it was the greatest thing. Then there was the Dodge Ram rust. I had a choice...I could put money into fixing it or I could replace it. @orkan and @brittel were trying to find me the perfect vehicle. Then they suggested a Subaru...at first I was defensive and all other matters of upset. The truth was I knew nothing about them other than they were something I knew nothing about.

    After watching SEVERAL youtube videos I was convinced it was something to check out. They have great ground clearance (8.7 inches if i remember) and great safety features. I was so sure I wanted another pickup to replace what I had that I overlooked the "crosstrek" market. Because I was so sure what I "needed" I neglected to look at anything else. We looked at the Ram 1500's and then I thought about the problems @orkan had with his 2012 1500. Within 1 week he broke it. It is not meant for anything but to look like a truck. He took it down 1 ditch and broke a part on it.

    Take a look at your local dealer...they are full of "trucks" that are supposed to be the answer to your truck dreams. Take it off-road once and you will see how unimpressive they are. I am not even mentioning the fact that you will lose your ass on resale value on a "typical" 1500 or similar truck.

    I get 30-38mpg highway easily with my Subaru. This last trip I took 562 miles and I could do it all on one tank of gas. That is all not even mentioning the safety features. As others on this forum can tell you I am one of the least coordinated people you will ever meet. The Subaru has Eyesight (check it out on youtube) and so many other features that makes it unique. Just by having one of the safest vehicles in America it has saved me from accidents. To me that is worth it.

    If you look hard at what you are going to use the vehicle for and decide that you really don't need a pickup look at the Subaru Outback...and if you don't need an Outback they have just come out with the Ascent. Which I have not driven but it look to be the replacement for the Durango.

    https://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=subaru+acent

    If you need a pickup this is not the response you need to read...but I too thought I "needed" a pickup but then I was converted to knowing what I really needed. @orkan and @brittel use their pickups for what they are intended for. One hauls tons of hay and one gets to where he needs to with no compromise. For me I thought I needed a pickup but in reality I needed a vehicle with great gas mileage, good cargo room. and great safety features.

    This is all without mentioning the resale value on a Subaru is amazing.

    @orkan and @brittel can probably tell you how impressed they were when they thought I would be stuck in a nasty sloppy mess only to see me pop out of the other side with no issues. The symmetrical AWD of the Subaru is impressive.


  • administrators



  • Yup, I can safely say that when the wife's minivan outlives its usefulness... she'll be getting a subaru outback. Amazing little vehicles. With the seats folded down, there's more room in that subaru than most little truck beds.

    For getting groceries and scooting around a city/suburbia... they are about the most perfect vehicle. @tackyp you should go check out a new outback. You might find that you don't "need" a truck either. If I didn't need one... I'd be driving an outback.



  • @orkan said in Tell me about trucks:

    Yup, I can safely say that when the wife's minivan outlives its usefulness... she'll be getting a subaru outback. Amazing little vehicles. With the seats folded down, there's more room in that subaru than most little truck beds.

    For getting groceries and scooting around a city/suburbia... they are about the most perfect vehicle. @tackyp you should go check out a new outback. You might find that you don't "need" a truck either. If I didn't need one... I'd be driving an outback.

    That's no joke, I "steal" the outback every chance I get. There have been multiple times I've thought "that rock is gonna hit somewhere" and it doesn't or "gonna have to pull this thing out" and despite it having a road tire it has surprised me every time.



  • I’ll take a look at that one as well. I’ve talked the issue over with the wife, and we both think that we need a truck.

    At this point, owning a house and with kids in the future, I only expect my need to haul stuff to grow in the future. Getting plywood home is a pain in the ass. On more than one occasion I’ve made my cuts in the parking lot of Home Depot so I could fit it in my current car.



  • One more thing.

    I’m going to look at trucks tomorrow.

    I’ve heard it mentioned that I can tune them. The internet makes it seem pretty easy to install and then restore to stock if I have the need (smog test).

    Does anyone here have any experience with tuning diesels? The notion of better mileage and power appeal to me (in that order).

    Thanks again for the input with this whole thread.



  • It is becoming more difficult to do this. The current GM Duramax engine cannot be tuned. GM has wrote the code in such away to pevent the aftermarket from being able to get into it. I'm primarily a GM guy and do not know now the current status of the current Ford or Ram trucks.
    Gas engines can be tuned in a similar way to improve performance as well. I'm not sure of the current state of any of the gas engines and the ability to time them.



  • Well the old Chevy finally died on me so traded her today on this new to me Dodge.

    y6xphVM.jpg

    S4VKmFD.jpg

    vE7xmev.jpg

    The girls are loving the sunroof



  • Very nice



  • Nice. :)

    I hope you have zero issues and it's a great truck for you!


 

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