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New truck search commences

Old 09-24-2015, 05:19 PM
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Join Date: Sep 2015
Posts: 2
Default New truck search commences

I sold my 3500 Dodge recently and have started looking at all the new offerings out there. This thread will be a place to share my opinions and observations of each. I am not brand loyal, and see good and bad in each so far. These things are expensive, so I'm taking my time, researching, and driving everything under the sun. This will not only be a workhorse, buy my families future trip vehicle and commuter, and I also have to be able to live with it for many years, as I do not plan to ever make another large purchase like this again. It also has to have a relatively low long term cost of ownership; fuel is not part of that criteria. If I wanted fuel economy I would buy a used Ridgeline. Unlike nearly every vehicle I've ever purchased, and ended up hating, this will not be an impulse buy, and will be months or years before something else sits in my driveway.

Last month I started with the HD lines. Ram 3500 Aisin Mega dually and 2500 Mega 6.4, GMC 3500 Dually and 2500 diesel, Silverado 2500 6.0 and F350/450 6.7, all at the highest trim level possible. The Mega was a Longhorn, and was exceptional to sit in; driving not so much. After all the fuel system and turbo issues with my 08, I can't see spending that much cash again just to have more potentially expensive issues down the road. Same goes for the Ford; way too many friends with fuel system and turbo issues. Both Ram and Ford corporate, along with a few dealers, really screwed them on the repairs. I would rather pay more for something that the dealer and manufacturer stands behind. The GMC was the best of the lot, as far as powertrain, and I did like the simplicity of the controls. However, at nearly $70 large, I would expect simple details, such as rear air vents, to be present; no such thing in any GM. The seats weren't that great, either, though I did like how configurable the heat settings are (just the back or the whole seat). And the back seat was the smallest of the group. The gas engines were as expected, with the 6.4 being my favorite. That being said, I'm looking to get this thing paid off in a few years, with as few (expensive) issues as possible, and none of these fit that bill. Even the cheapest HD I like is still in the $50k range, and that's without a bunch of niceties.

I then moved onto half ton trucks. The first surprise was the Ram ED; great mileage and, personally, more than enough power to get the job done. However, it pulls less than the Hemi, costs more to buy, and way more to maintain; very expensive oil changes and replacement costs if that engine dies under non-warranty circumstances. It's already happened. I didn't like the valve-knocking from any of the Hemis I drove, which is another well known issue. My least favorite, so far, are the GM twins. The 5.3 is great, but I don't care for the interiors. The current Tundra and Titan are not even on the radar. However, GM is updating for next year, and the new Titan XD will be out soon with the 5.0 Cummins, so stay tuned.

Surprisingly, the Eco F150 is my current favorite. Having read all the issues with the first gen of that engine, and being skeptical of the aluminum body, I was pleasantly shocked at how well it drives. The EB, especially, is a pleasure to drive. I did want the 5.0 at first, but a 24 hour test of an EB equipped KR made me a convert, along with only a $400 premium over the V8; Ram wants anywhere from about $2k to over $4k for that option, and you can only get the ED in a 4x4 if want the true crew cab and longer bed option; Ford will let you get any engine (except the base 3.5) with any bed, cab and driveline configuration. I like that ability to tailor my truck, especially if commanding a mid five figure price. The power of that EB, especially if you tap the "T/S" button twice, putting the trans in Sport mode, is nothing short of awesome, better than the 5.0. Only issue with the truck I drove; it had the 23 gallon tank. Considering I put less than 75 miles on it, and it drained about 1/4 tank, this thing can get thirsty, and the larger tank really is needed, especially if you tow (which I will).

I like several features of the KR package, namely all the electronics (electric release tailgate, powered steps, safety systems, current gen SYNC system), rear seat room, bed configurability, tailgate step, all the exterior work lights, etc. There's a ton of stuff on these new trucks, and I'm still trying to figure most of them out. However, they key item I like the most are the seats. Not having researched prior to the drive, I was surprised you can get massaging seats outside of a Lincoln. With my bad back, they are awesome.

I also drove the Colorado/Canyon twins; for $20k, the base is pretty impressive compared to the Taco and Frontier. However, at over $41k for the blinged out heated leather seat version, I say go full sized; not much more in fuel, but a much better truck to use every day for the same money.
Old 08-30-2016, 01:55 AM
Carlyn's Avatar
Join Date: Aug 2016
Location: Canada
Posts: 5

Hey there! You should probably check this article out. I'm sure this will help you in deciding how to get the best truck you need. Good luck bro.
Old 08-31-2016, 03:21 PM
GMCSierraFan's Avatar
Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: Midwest
Posts: 1,559

Hello NFL!

Thanks for the great post with your experience. I understand a lot of this is opinion based and definitely doesn't apply to everyone.

As for the HD trucks, I'll input a little... DEF SUCKS. I can't imagine this solution will be around long. 2011 F350 DEF was spilled on the paint by the dealer and had to be repainted. 2015 f350 the DEF guage quit working and Ford has no fix for it. 2014 Cruze Turbo Diesel has been through 2 02 sensors, an EGT sensor, and the DEF resevoir and pump have all been replaced.

That being said, my family is in the horse community and runs with the heavy duty truck crowd. Mechanically these trucks I know the full service histories on.

-2011 F350 Dually traded in at 275k miles. Only issue was A/C compressor
-2011 F350 SRW traded in at 140k miles. Small electrical fire covered by Ford
-2015 F350 Dually King Ranch. Current tow vehicle. 38,000 miles no problems other than DEF
-2015 F450 Western Hauler. 80k miles. Current tow vehicle. Loves it.

history of Ford Diesel engines.

7.3 Powerstrokes- Designed and built by Ford until 2004.5. Great engine. Still hold their values to this day.

6.0 Turbo Powerstroke- Introduced midway through 2004 to 2007. MANY issues. Designed and built by Navistar. Mine personally lost a High Pressure Oil pump to the tune of $4200.

6.4 Twin Turbo Powerstroke- Designed and built by Navistar from 2008-2010. Awful engine. Awful fuel economy. High repair bills. Just miserable.

6.7 Powerstroke Gen1- Ford brought program back in house. 2011-14. Great engine. A lot of power.

6.7 Gen 2- 2015-16. - Slightly more tuning... bigger turbo. Massive power gains.

6.7 Gen 3- 2017+ - Absolute Powerhouse and all aluminum body.

My point here is that engines tend to evolve if they are great, and die if they are awful. The GM 350 v8 was around for over 30 years... because it worked, and lived through TBI, efi, and stricter emissions. The 6.6 Duramax has been modified and improved since it's inception. The 5.3 that is in my truck has been in service since 1999... and these are all examples of engines that work.

I've learned this lesson a few times and am still learning it... buy what works and has been improved on... You'll have less issues long term.

.... as he goes and kicks the 2014 Cruze diesel that was discontinued after two years.....
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