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Old 06-28-2016, 10:27 AM   #1
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3/4 ton gas vs diesel. Pros and cons

I am looking to upgrade from my 1/2 ton Silverado towing a wet weight of 7200lbs to a 3/4 ton. Which does everyone prefer? Most important thing for me is difference in gas mileage. Take one big trip a year and the rest are just an hour or so to local lakes and campgrounds.

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Old 06-28-2016, 10:33 AM   #2
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Once you go to diesel, you will not go back to gas.

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Old 06-28-2016, 10:35 AM   #3
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If you are considering Ford, go with the F350 rather than the F250. It actually costs less and has more cargo capacity, though they are really the same truck.
As far as fuel, you can expect 9 to 10 mpg for gas and 15 to 17 for diesel. Gasser maintenance is lower and repair costs are lower. Diesel will pull easier, but for short trips it's pretty much a non issue.
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Old 06-28-2016, 10:36 AM   #4
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When I upgraded from my 1500 to my 2500, I went with the gas for the lower upfront cost and the same reasons you listed. Right now I only take 2 long trips a year with the rest being short trips.
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Old 06-28-2016, 10:37 AM   #5
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Also consider going to a 1 Ton - that way you can pretty much tow whatever comes your way!

Remember the "Break Even Point" for a Diesel is @ 110K miles so if you go diesel with the way you camp now, you will have that truck for a long time -- maybe through 1-3 more campers. Might as well get something that can pull anything
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Old 06-28-2016, 10:37 AM   #6
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I just moved up to a 1 ton diesel. I was looking for a 3/4 ton but found a great deal on the 1 ton. I can tell you that there is not much difference in the gas mileage, but the towing is night and day especially in the mountains.
My trailer is around 7400 lbs wet and the diesel pulled 8% grades at 65 mph and stayed right under 2000 rpm in 5th gear.

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Old 06-28-2016, 10:48 AM   #7
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Well... I'll bite... But I am bringing my pop corn....

About a year ago I started the same thoughts.. I had a 1/2 ton pulling about 7500lbs as well. I knew I wanted 3/4 ton but was not sure what direction. All my considerations are based on a 4x4.. I do need this for what I do.

My concerns:
1. Ability to pull (either way would work)
2. longevity of vehicle (I tow 4,000 or so miles a year and drive a total of 20,000 a year)
3. Fuel efficiency (its a big truck ain't gonna be no Prius).
4. Maintenance.
5. (last for a reason) Cost

1. I expected diesel would be more powerful and most likely more enjoyable to pull.. But expected a 7 to 10k increase in initial cost. The gasser would still (IMO) pull BETTER than the 1/2 ton so either way was a win. We pull quite a bit through many different terrains.

2. gas engines last a lot longer than they used to, my plan was to keep the truck for a long time. I am not one to keep trading out at the end of the lease / loan. I want a truck for 10 years or more.

3. My 1/2 ton got 18 highway, 9 to 10 towing. My ride to work is 30 miles each way and is 90% highway. The gas 3/4 ton seemed to be (according to the internet) around 14 to 16 highway and 9 or 10 towing. The diesel was 16 to 21 highway and 12 to 14 towing (again, according to the internet). I will cut to the end here.. I did do the diesel and get 12 to 14 towing and 17 to 19 highway.

4. I do my own tire rotations, oil, and other simple tasks. The diesel does require a fuel filter every year (or so), more oil (mine is 2 gallons), and DEF. I will probably spend an extra 100 or 150 a year on maintenance. I consider that a wash. Spend more than that a year on Dunkin Donuts..

5. Cost WAS a slight factor, I am not cheap per se, but I do not want to pay more than I need to. An extra 7 to 10k is a lot of coin. BUT I also did not want to regret the buy.

When I hit the dealers I looked at the gas they were in the 48k range. They had the diesels for 49 to 50k range. I ended up looking at the above and my needs and got the diesel. I did have a gas 2500 for about a week while tow mirrors were added to my truck. I can confirm the 14mph driving.. I SUCKED fuel.

But I am not you, I do not know your commute to work, your amount of time towing / traveling. If I was only a one or two weekend person a month. I'd have sucked it up and dealt with the 1/2 ton. If I had a short commute to work I'd do the gas over diesel (they do not like short drives so they say).

While fuel efficiency was slightly important to me, I drive a truck, not a prius. So I was not getting wrapped up in it.. But for the 1k (for my case) increase in cost I did the diesel for the better mileage. If you drive 5 miles to work it might (in reality) take 10 years to break even on the saving of fuel so look at that realistically.

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Old 06-28-2016, 11:01 AM   #8
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Originally Posted by Waxinmyboat View Post
Most important thing for me is difference in gas mileage.

You'll get better mileage with the diesel for sure - and more power. But I would go 1 ton if you go diesel. Just the extra weight of the engine itself kills the payload numbers on a 3/4 ton.

With the diesel you're also looking at significantly higher upfront cost (which you get some or all of back when you trade/sell).

And with the diesel you'll offset the fuel cost savings with higher maintenance (oil changes, fuel filters, DEF) and you run the (probably) small risk of expensive repairs down the line. You can do some calculations based on your situation - miles towing, miles not towing, gas vs diesel price to get the savings and compare that to extra upfront cost plus maintenance of the diesel. Its probably a fairly long way to breakeven.

If you want a bump in payload & towing capacity from a 1/2 ton, the 3/4 ton gasser is a good option. If you plan to upgrade or really need the extra power from the diesel go that way. I wouldn't buy a diesel on the premise its a money saver - I would buy a diesel because you want / need the better power and performance.

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Old 06-28-2016, 11:05 AM   #9
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Old 06-28-2016, 11:05 AM   #10
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I'll add to KMP. My payload for a 2500 LTZ Duramax 4 door short bed is 2450lbs. I do not know what the same truck in gas would be but I am sure over 3,000.


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