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tow vehicle - rated torque vs load (gas or diesel?)

 
Old 07-11-2015, 02:31 PM
  #21  
zigspeed10
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I had a 2002 6.0 2500hd Chevy gas truck and earlier this year I bought a 2011 Duramax. I pull a 28' enclosed. The gas truck could pull it but couldn't keep up with traffic and any kind of incline my foot was too the floor to keep from getting run over by the semis.

It was work for the truck and the driver. Towing with the diesel is a non-event and you will forget you are even towing. Get the diesel even if you have to buy an older higher mileage truck.

My truck has 196,000 miles with all of the emissions stuff still on it. I just changed oil and fuel filter and added DEF when the message on the dash told me to. Maintenance wise I don't think there is anything to worry about with the diesels. It's also my daily driver.
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Old 07-11-2015, 08:41 PM
  #22  
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The DEf/DPF isn't a big deal other than it helps kill fuel economy... the def tanks last a good while, and you know when they need refueled.

If you want mpg, ram is where its at, and I like the tech in the interior, but the truck is "clunky" in the tranny

Ford nice package overall, but very dated inside

GM- A bit smaller feeling inside, has good tech, just not my favorite of the bunch.
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Old 07-13-2015, 10:00 PM
  #23  
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2011 Sierra 2500 Duramax here. Deleted the emissions/DEF stuff and really allowed the truck to run well. I am knocking out 24mpg unloaded on the interstate regularly. I daily drive my truck as well, less than a mile to work.

I have towed both open and enclosed with this truck, and regularly tow a 28' enclosed with plenty of weight inside. With the weight I am towing, I can't complain about 13mpg on trips to and from Arizona. A gasser would see single digits for sure, and would probably be a big mess when going through the mountains.

If you are anything like me, go overkill from the beginning and get the diesel. I promise you will not regret it.
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Old 07-14-2015, 01:06 AM
  #24  
lefrog
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I towed my 28ft enclosed (approx 9k lbs all loaded with car, pit cart, spares...) both with my 2500HD 6.0 gas and my neighbor's F350 diesel. A diesel is going to pull more effortlessly in the hills but I have no problem at 70mph on the highway with the 6.0 gas (gas mileage difference was only 2mpg and diesel is way more expensive than regular).
For me the cost of diesel wasn't justified, I don't travel long distances with the trailer (4/5 hours max one way) and the 3/4 ton gas gets the job done even in through the hills in Vermont. Plus in New England with the cold winters, it's a real pain with diesel, you need to plug them in and good luck if you go ice racing to find a plug on the lake!
If cost is a primary factor, go with gas, if comfort is what you are looking for, go for diesel.
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Old 07-14-2015, 04:08 PM
  #25  
steve J06
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Originally Posted by lefrog View Post
For me the cost of diesel wasn't justified, I don't travel long distances with the trailer (4/5 hours max one way) and the 3/4 ton gas gets the job done even in through the hills in Vermont. If cost is a primary factor, go with gas, if comfort is what you are looking for, go for diesel.
Guess that is an important factor as I won't be doing any kind of cross country towing and suspect that more trips will be of the 1-3 hour kind. I was all sold on diesel and now someone towing a LOADED enclosed says don't overlook the gas.

Maybe I should rent each type of truck, borrow a trailer and see for myself how they compare.
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Old 07-15-2015, 11:53 AM
  #26  
seamus2154
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Please report back after you rent both. I own a brand new GMC 1500 gas and still decided to rent a diesel because of a long distance tow and my truck was not fully broken in at the time. Well when I came back from the effortless towing of the diesel and 13.5 mpg towing I wish I had bought a diesel!! There is no comparison.

One point you may not be considering is resale. Yes diesel trucks have an up charge but have you seen the resale on a diesel truck with over 100k on it??? They have a very high resale even with high mileage. You don't lose any money on a diesel over the long run.
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Old 07-15-2015, 04:30 PM
  #27  
Bill Dearborn
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Originally Posted by seamus2154 View Post
Diesel all the way. I own a new 2015 1500 GMC crew w/a gas 5.3, 3.42's. Can it pull my trailer?…yes. Does it?…yes. Around Florida short trips no problem. But recently I was going pretty far up to VIR. I rented a new 2014 F250 diesel crew cab. WOW. What a breeze towing up there! Also got 13.5 mpg the whole way at 80 mph! When I got to the event my friend and I noticed that the truck of choice amongst most was the diesel F250. I am a GM guy but if I were buy a tow vehicle it would be the F250 all the way and I own a new GMC 1500. I used to own a duramax and the maintenance is easy. Fuel filter, and oil need to be stayed on top of, but not a big deal.
The problem with your GMC is the rear axle ratio. Most dealers don't order the correct axle ratio just like most of them will not order a posi rear even with 4WD. In most cases you can't just go down to the dealer and pick one off the lot. Like my 12 year older Tahoe it needs the 3:73 gears to get around. It will tow that load very well and fast with those gears. MPG is the only concern with about 12 to 13 mpg towing the trailer in hilly country and 17/18 mpg without a trailer. Of course that mpg is in the 70+ speed range but a diesel will get much better mileage. In a lot of places diesel fuel is still close to a dollar a gallon more than regular gas so you have to factor that in as well.

Bill
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Old 07-15-2015, 04:57 PM
  #28  
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Under 8k pounds = Get an Eco-Boost F150
Over 8k pounds = Get a diesel

I had a 2013 F150 FX4 with the Eco-Boost and it would haul really well.

Personally, if you are going to be hauling regularly, the diesel will be worth the difference in price. Everything about them is built for hauling.

Just my .02
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Old 07-15-2015, 10:41 PM
  #29  
CorvetteCowboy
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Default Gas vs Diesel

First I tow for a living so I have a firm grip about what I speak.
I am reading the replies and many of them are comparing 1/2 tons vs 3/4 tons, vs 1 tons. All a lot of BS. Compare tow vehicles of the same wieght class.

Diesels are expensive to operate when you include the maintenance, oil changes, fuel filter changes, etc. So you have to have a compelling reason to buy one. The truck bodies and frames are the same for gas and diesel of the same weight class. Engines and transmissions are the big difference.

Towing the weight of an enclosed trailer with a car in it requires a least a 3/4 ton truck for safety, (tires, power to pull and braking power). Half ton trucks are not up to the job on a regular basis, yes they will pull the trailer but they are working hard to do it and they are just not enough truck, especially if hills are part of your tow route.

Feel free to PM me if you have questions.
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Old 07-16-2015, 01:43 PM
  #30  
steve J06
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Originally Posted by CorvetteCowboy View Post
First I tow for a living so I have a firm grip about what I speak.
I am reading the replies and many of them are comparing 1/2 tons vs 3/4 tons, vs 1 tons. All a lot of BS. Compare tow vehicles of the same wieght class.

Diesels are expensive to operate when you include the maintenance, oil changes, fuel filter changes, etc. So you have to have a compelling reason to buy one. The truck bodies and frames are the same for gas and diesel of the same weight class. Engines and transmissions are the big difference.

Towing the weight of an enclosed trailer with a car in it requires a least a 3/4 ton truck for safety, (tires, power to pull and braking power). Half ton trucks are not up to the job on a regular basis, yes they will pull the trailer but they are working hard to do it and they are just not enough truck, especially if hills are part of your tow route.

Feel free to PM me if you have questions.
I appreciate all the responses so far, but feel that you are someone who understands that my gas vs. diesel question is about motive power and torque at the wheels, because (as Bill points out above) it also changes with gearing. I do understand that full sized trucks are designed differently than 1/2 tons, with sufficient brakes for the rated loads regardless of power source and so am only considering 1 tons at this time. So as you suggest, my core question is "does a load of 8K in an enclosed trailer require a diesel engine to overcome the inertia and wind resistance?" NO ego kick required for having the "biggest toy on the block". At this point the upfront cost is no longer a concern because as seamus2154 suggests they do hold value well, a lot better than I might have guessed.

PM sent.
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Old 05-06-2019, 08:51 AM
  #31  
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Oops, wrong thread

Last edited by argonaut; 05-06-2019 at 12:42 PM. Reason: wrong thread
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Old 05-08-2019, 04:20 PM
  #32  
MatthewMiller
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Originally Posted by steve J06 View Post
I appreciate all the responses so far, but feel that you are someone who understands that my gas vs. diesel question is about motive power and torque at the wheels, because (as Bill points out above) it also changes with gearing. I do understand that full sized trucks are designed differently than 1/2 tons, with sufficient brakes for the rated loads regardless of power source and so am only considering 1 tons at this time. So as you suggest, my core question is "does a load of 8K in an enclosed trailer require a diesel engine to overcome the inertia and wind resistance?" NO ego kick required for having the "biggest toy on the block". At this point the upfront cost is no longer a concern because as seamus2154 suggests they do hold value well, a lot better than I might have guessed.

PM sent.
Torque at the crankshaft has no direct relationship to the accelerative force at the contact patch that's available to accelerate the vehicle. None. the force that accelerates a vehicle is call Tractive Effort (TE), and it's the linear force at the contact patch that accelerates the vehicle (it's the F in F=ma). TE is only determined by two variables: horsepower at the wheels and road speed. That's it. It doesn't matter what the crankshaft torque or rpm is. IOW, if your vehicle can output 300hp at 60mph, it doesn't matter if it's diesel or gas, the vehicle will accelerate from 60mph at the same rate as any other vehicle that can output 300hp at 60mph.

That said, there are good reasons that diesels are preferred for hauling. The two biggest are that they tend to be very durable at higher constant power settings and they tend to be more fuel efficient. With turbos, we also see that they can develop more power at high loads because there is more exhaust flow available to build more boost. But we also see that with turbocharged gas engines, as long as they can control detonation (see the Ecoboost example). The big downsides to diesels are the higher fuel cost and the higher purchase price.
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Old 05-10-2019, 08:10 AM
  #33  
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Originally Posted by c4cruiser View Post
I tow my 20' enclosed trailer that holds my '87 Vette autocross/track day car using my '08 Silverado 1/2 ton with the 6.0 gas motor. The truck is an extended cab Z71 and has 3.73 gears in a G80 locker diff (not posi). The trailer and car weigh just about 6800 lbs.

My truck is rated to tow up to 8500 lbs and has a GCWR of 14K lbs. If the truck had 4.10's, it could tow 10,500 and a GCWR or 16K lbs but it would also have to have the "Enhanced Trailering Performance Package". Whatever that is...

Your current F250 should be able to do the job; what motor is in it? 5.4 Triton? The current line of Chevy/GMC trucks have an available 6.2L motor and a 6-speed trans. Some people are saying that the new (Dodge) Ram trucks are pretty impressive with the Hemi engine. I'm not a red Dodge fan, but their trucks are supposed to be much better than they were some 3-4 years ago.
I currently own a 03 Silverado 2wd 2500 with 4.10's extended cab 6.0 gas. For an open trailer it does fine. If I was regularly towing a large enclosed...I'd go diesel.
Originally Posted by JeremyGSU View Post
Get a diesel. Hands down. The difference isn't just in the power, it's the chassis, braking, etc.

I used to have an '06 F-150 4-door with the 5.4L and 3.55 gears. My friend had a 20 ft enclosed car hauler with around a 2,200 lbs car, gear, etc. My truck could pull it but at 70mph I had to turn over-drive off to hold the speed. It would also sag the truck quite a bit without the weight bars. My friend had an '07 2500 with the Duramax. It was literally night and day towing the same trailer with his truck. His truck towed it so much easier it wasn't even funny. His truck only had 660 tq versus the newer ones with 800 tq plus. It sagged less, braked better, etc. It's just that much heavier. You could cruise at 70mph no problem and accelerate well if you wanted to. Mine just kept it going. My same friend later bought a '14 F-250 and it towed even better. You almost can't tell the trailer is back there.

I now have a '11 Tundra with the 5.7L. It's a hoss for a gas motor. I pull my Vette on an open 20' car hauler and it does well. But I recently towed an enclosed 18' trailer with just a grill in it and some other stuff, probably several thousand pounds less than the car hauler and it kept kicking the torque converter on/off cruising at 70mph. It's not really the weight, it's mostly wind drag. It towed worse than the car hauler.

Gas engines can tow enclosed trailers, sure but if you ever got the opportunity to tow with a diesel there is just no comparison. For an enclosed trailer that size and weight I would recommend diesel. No amount of gears, etc. will make it even close.
LOL Your 06 F150 is not the same league as a 07 2500 Dmax. 1/2 ton vs 3/4 ton...5.4L vs Diesel. No wonder why it felt like an improvement. Unless your F150 had upgraded springs etc, it will sag. I see newer 2000-ish Tundras that seem to sag with open utility trailers and lawn equipment. The NEWEST Tundras look nice but I never saw them as good WORK truck.

Originally Posted by CorvetteCowboy View Post
First I tow for a living so I have a firm grip about what I speak.
I am reading the replies and many of them are comparing 1/2 tons vs 3/4 tons, vs 1 tons. All a lot of BS. Compare tow vehicles of the same wieght class.

Diesels are expensive to operate when you include the maintenance, oil changes, fuel filter changes, etc. So you have to have a compelling reason to buy one. The truck bodies and frames are the same for gas and diesel of the same weight class. Engines and transmissions are the big difference.

Towing the weight of an enclosed trailer with a car in it requires a least a 3/4 ton truck for safety, (tires, power to pull and braking power). Half ton trucks are not up to the job on a regular basis, yes they will pull the trailer but they are working hard to do it and they are just not enough truck, especially if hills are part of your tow route.

Feel free to PM me if you have questions.
I agree. Can you tow a open trailer with a car using a Ford Ranger? Sure...is it safe HELL NO lol.


Something else that may be considered as many have brought up with diesel fuel cost/maintenance cost/DEF fluid is letting a diesel sit. Maybe trucks of today this is a myth, but I have always been told not to let them sit for extended periods. Our truck is a 3rd vehicle/emergency vehicle (if one of the dailies are broken)/Home Depot run vehicle/tow rig. So during the summer it may sit for a month+. During the winter it gets used regularly...it becomes my daily since I have a C5.

The engineer in me says it's dumb NOT to go diesel since my wife owns a horse and EVENTUALLY a gooseneck 2 horse trailer+ weekender living quarters may come along and EVENTUALLY my 18-20 ft enclosed trailer may come...it just depends on how often you tow. My wife has towed a 2-horse aluminum bumper pull horse trailer with our 2500 silverado 6.0 gas. Then got to tow the same 2-horse trailer with a 2015 3500 Ram diesel...she said it was night and day and made it so nice to haul.

If you tow only once in a while, maybe it's not SO critical you go diesel. But anything more frequent than once a month towing 1K+mi....I would lean toward a diesel. Plus resale value will stay strong with a diesel.

I have never been a Ford guy since...well early 2000's. My top picks in trucks would HAVE TO be a 2500/3500 in a 1) GMC Sierra (looks/options are nice) 2) Chevy Silverado 3) Dodge Ram (I can't believe I just said that LOL but the new Rams look nice)
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Old 05-14-2019, 01:16 PM
  #34  
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I bought a 2016 RAM 1500 EcoDiesel brand new over 2 years ago. I have loved the truck overall. Mileage is great when not towing. Before I put larger wheels and tires I could eek out 29 MPG on the highway. 23 MPG mixed.

This truck tows an open uhaul trailer with my corvette loaded without an issue. It gets 19-20 MPG towing it and feel great on the road. The only issue is staying at 70 MPH or above*. Above those speeds and towing a really heavy load the engine will run hot. Personally I have never had issues, but other guys pulling camping trailers have had high temps. Also if you have an enclosed trailer you might better off with a 3/4 ton truck. I love the 8 speed auto and the torquey diesel engine. Great combo.

Last edited by billy mild; 05-14-2019 at 06:19 PM.
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Old 05-14-2019, 04:29 PM
  #35  
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Originally Posted by billy mild View Post
I bought a 2016 RAM 1500 EcoDiesel brand new over 2 years ago. I have loved the truck overall. Mileage is great when not towing. Before I put larger wheels and tires I could eek out 29 MPG on the highway. 23 MPG mixed.

This truck tows an open uhaul trailer with my corvette loaded without an issue. It gets 19-20 MPG towing it and feel great on the road. The only issue is staying at 70 MPH or below. Also if you have an enclosed trailer you might better off with a 3/4 ton truck. I love the 8 speed auto and the torquey diesel engine. Great combo.
Problem staying at 70mph or below? Sounds like it's not the best choice of truck then since that's the mph range you SHOULD be towing LOL. (I know some like to cruise at 80mph ) 2003 Silverado 2500 HD 2WD, 2003 C5Z and 2008 Lexus IS250 AWD is our fleet...nothing gets great MPG's LOL.


IMO take gas mileage out of the equation if this is strictly a "hobby tow vehicle" that tows once a month. If you are buying to become a car hauler by profession/side job, sure factor in MPG's. The extra fuel I burn using a 6.0 gas motor MAYBE once a month may break even with the cost of maintenance on a diesel as time goes on.
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Old 05-14-2019, 04:50 PM
  #36  
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just go buy a 2500hd duramax crew cab ,
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Old 05-14-2019, 06:19 PM
  #37  
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Originally Posted by smitty2919 View Post
Problem staying at 70mph or below? Sounds like it's not the best choice of truck then since that's the mph range you SHOULD be towing LOL. (I know some like to cruise at 80mph ) 2003 Silverado 2500 HD 2WD, 2003 C5Z and 2008 Lexus IS250 AWD is our fleet...nothing gets great MPG's LOL.


IMO take gas mileage out of the equation if this is strictly a "hobby tow vehicle" that tows once a month. If you are buying to become a car hauler by profession/side job, sure factor in MPG's. The extra fuel I burn using a 6.0 gas motor MAYBE once a month may break even with the cost of maintenance on a diesel as time goes on.
I meant to say 70 or above.
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