AR15.Com Archives
 Diesel MPG
gunner539  [Team Member]
9/22/2011 5:26:25 PM EST
Looking at getting a diesel crew cab pickup.3/4 to 1ton.
Probably gonna be in the 2004-06 range and open to ford,chev or dodge.
Wondering what to expect around town,hwy and with pulling an
8000 lb trailer?
My 1/2 ton gas truck is ailing and only gets like 6mpg pulling the trailer and
13-14 around town same for hwy.Will probably tow the trailer less and get a pick up
camper eventually.
Thanks for any info.
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kris55  [Team Member]
9/23/2011 3:26:25 AM EST
I have an 07 dodge with the last year of 5.9 cummins in it. I have hand calcd just a touch under 12mpg towing a 26' fifth wheel toyhauler at approx 60ish MPH.

Only issues I have had has been some front end shit that Chrysler tried to fix but I think they still don't want to admit that their whole design on the front ends for a while has been shit and they should just put in aftermarket stuff.

If you take one for a test drive try to pay attention to any loose or notchy/ bumpy feeling in the steering wheel. Or make sure that the front end has all the upgraded recall stuff added on. You can find that out by google searching for it.

I only have under 40,000'miles on mine and besides the front end issue absolutely love it.

I have never been on many empty trips with it to actually figure out a gas mileage unloaded but estimate from the overhead info around 18 if not better on highway. I will be able to figure that out next week when i take it to new Mexico.
godzillamax  [Team Member]
9/23/2011 5:53:37 AM EST
I've got an '05 Ford F250 PowerStroke (yeah, I know) diesel and my fuel economy (based on the electronic display) says I average 17 MPG on the freeway and overall 14-15 MPG. And that is not towing anything, just normal driving. I think you would be hard pressed to find many, if any, diesel pick-up trucks that get over 20 MPG let alone much better than 15 MPG. Oh, and the MPG the manufacturer reports is total BS and is usually overestimated by a lot.
kris55  [Team Member]
9/23/2011 6:01:22 AM EST
Originally Posted By godzillamax:
I've got an '05 Ford F250 PowerStroke (yeah, I know) diesel and my fuel economy (based on the electronic display) says I average 17 MPG on the freeway and overall 14-15 MPG. And that is not towing anything, just normal driving. I think you would be hard pressed to find many, if any, diesel pick-up trucks that get over 20 MPG let alone much better than 15 MPG. Oh, and the MPG the manufacturer reports is total BS and is usually overestimated by a lot.


My neighbor has gotten around 21 on longer trips with his 05 dodge 1 ton. Hand calcd, not the electronic display.
Of course YMMV.
sjuhockey10  [Team Member]
9/23/2011 6:27:29 AM EST
Originally Posted By godzillamax:
Oh, and the MPG the manufacturer reports is total BS and is usually overestimated by a lot.


No diesels, but every Ford vehicle I've owned has exceeded the reported MPG by a decent margin.
builttoughf250  [Team Member]
9/23/2011 1:11:37 PM EST
All of my trucks are always 1 ton, 4 wheel drive, crew cab, long box trucks, diesel, automatic transmissions.

my 2006 F350 6.0 diesel- had an exhaust kit, and later on a chip. I was getting 18-19 with those mods on the highway, 12 or so mixed towing and city driving, 14-15 mixed city and highway not towing. really heavy towing, loaded dump trailer with logs- 9-11 MPG

at 100K miles i just started having stupid little problems. stuff that was only 1/2 hour fixes, or a few hundred at a shop, or still under warranty, but, its my business vehicle, so i cant afford down time if i can avoid it so i got a 2011 truck. Considering how much of that trucks life was heavy towing, it held up really well.

2011 F350- new 6.7 liter motor- average city + highway mixed driving- 12.5-13mph all highway- 15.5-17MPG and sometimes low 19mpg depending on conditions. towing heavy- 10MPG

the incentives and rebates were so high, and interest was low, so i traded that truck in for a different 2011 F350- and im averaging 14MPG CITY driving with it......... ive yet to be on a highway long enough to gauge that....

I stick to Fords personally, ive seen ALL trucks have problems, my brothers two duramax trucks have ghosts in the electrical systems, ive got friends with Dodges- the cummins motors are awesome, its just too bad they have a dodge wrapped around them, and the Ford 6.0's can be hit or miss with injector problems, my 2003 had a turbo blow out on the 6.0 ford, but that was the first year they used that motor, and i was REALLY rough on that truck.... yeah, i could do breakstands with 35" tires dont even bother getting a ford 6.4 diesel from what friends of mine say.
gunner539  [Team Member]
9/24/2011 10:52:48 AM EST
From what I've heard the 6.0 ford or the 5.9 cummins would be the top 2 so far.
All good comments,keep em coming if you have anything else.
midwestoffroad  [Team Member]
9/24/2011 5:01:47 PM EST
The newer the diesel the worst the mpg is. With particulate filters and going into regeneration mode there choked. Towing on average 12mpg isnt out if line. And 18 on the highway. Been around many diesels and that goes for them all. Toy can get into the 20 with some discipline. Personally I prefer Ford but would do a cummins. They have diesels figured out.
builttoughf250  [Team Member]
9/24/2011 7:02:57 PM EST
Originally Posted By midwestoffroad:
The newer the diesel the worst the mpg is. With particulate filters and going into regeneration mode there choked. Towing on average 12mpg isnt out if line. And 18 on the highway. Been around many diesels and that goes for them all. Toy can get into the 20 with some discipline. Personally I prefer Ford but would do a cummins. They have diesels figured out.


if i could buy a Ford with a Cummins motor, no exhaust gas fluid, id do so in a heartbeat...
firemedic5586  [Team Member]
9/25/2011 6:39:15 AM EST


'02 F350 7.3L CCLB: Mods; Zoodad, EBPV deleate, DIY CAI, 5" Turbo Back Magnaflow Exhaust, Edge Insight CTS, PHP FU Chip. Other stuff; coolant Bypass filter, 203 stat, Cat ELC, HID headlights&fogs, LED's for everything else. TorkLift = SuperHitch, Camper Jacks, Stableload.

I get about 15mpg city, 20mpg freeway.. About 12mpg as seen here; with the boat full loaded with fuel, camping gear ect, also a '78 12ft coachman Camper packed with a weeks worth of supplies for 4, and booze for me.


midwestoffroad  [Team Member]
9/26/2011 12:53:23 PM EST
Originally Posted By builttoughf250:
Originally Posted By midwestoffroad:
The newer the diesel the worst the mpg is. With particulate filters and going into regeneration mode there choked. Towing on average 12mpg isnt out if line. And 18 on the highway. Been around many diesels and that goes for them all. Toy can get into the 20 with some discipline. Personally I prefer Ford but would do a cummins. They have diesels figured out.


if i could buy a Ford with a Cummins motor, no exhaust gas fluid, id do so in a heartbeat...


If Catapilar would be willing to make a enough engines and stick in the fords you would have the ULTIMATE diesel powerd truck

in the mean time you can still get DESTROKED
txgp17  [Team Member]
9/26/2011 4:07:26 PM EST
I have an 02 Ford, 7.3 Crewcab longbed 4x4 F-250 with manual transmission, 3.73 gears and 285x75R16 tires. I get about 19 highway (don't go over 65) and 17 in town, not towing anything.

My Dad has a 02' GMC Duramax with an Allison, and my brother has a 01' and both are 4x4's. They both get better mileage than me when they drive sensibly.

The Allison is a real big selling point for the GM trucks. And you can get a kit to turn any 5 speed Allison 1000 into a 6-speed, reducing engine speed at cruise by about 15%.
gunner539  [Team Member]
9/26/2011 4:50:13 PM EST
Firemedic that is a nice setup.Will probably not be quite as big of a camper or boat but
that is what I'm working towards.I'm jealous-my 1984 17' larson just aint the same.
TeamSlacker  [Member]
9/27/2011 4:11:16 AM EST
02 Dodge 2500 CTD (not stock).
Every drop of fuel I've burned in the last 5.5 years (70k miles) has been accounted for in spreadsheet.

Overall average 13.79mpg
Best ever 20.676mpg
Worst 9.03mpg

Our annual fall trip from St. Cloud to Grand Marias, cruise set close to speed limit (58 and 70) usually nets around 20mpg
The worst figure is from pulling 18' toy hauler across SD with wind.
Earlier this month, pulling toy hauler to Medora ND, 3 people and hunting gear for a week, cruise set around 62-63 on the freeway was around 12mpg.

My chart also shows me in March of 09 I was paying $1.93 gallon
and May of 08 was $4.75/gal
kris55  [Team Member]
9/27/2011 11:58:21 AM EST
Just had first gas stop from leaving Hibbing to new Mexico.

495 miles 25.2 gals -19.5mpg

On I-35 cruise is set at 74mph.

norseman1  [Team Member]
9/30/2011 3:00:56 PM EST
My brothers' 6.6L GMC 2500 gets up to 20mpg, but, is more like 18 for most work. Driving 65MPH he gets up to 22, but, that gets boring.


[ETA: 6.6L, not 6.9L ... ]
NoStockBikes  [Team Member]
9/30/2011 7:31:10 PM EST
'02 Dmax. Avg is 17-19, depending on how much time I'm spending on the freeway. I used to get 18-20, but I think she might be losing some power in her old age. When I had my injectors replaced (under warranty) at ~175k, they tried to sell me on a turbo rebuild due to some wear.

I was pleasantly surprised to read this thread and not see the usual "I get 26 mpg out of my Cummins". The internet, where everyone has 12" dicks, supermodel girlfriends, and mid-20's mpg diesel trucks.
builttoughf250  [Team Member]
10/1/2011 9:55:09 AM EST
Originally Posted By NoStockBikes:
'02 Dmax. Avg is 17-19, depending on how much time I'm spending on the freeway. I used to get 18-20, but I think she might be losing some power in her old age. When I had my injectors replaced (under warranty) at ~175k, they tried to sell me on a turbo rebuild due to some wear.

I was pleasantly surprised to read this thread and not see the usual "I get 26 mpg out of my Cummins". The internet, where everyone has 12" dicks, supermodel girlfriends, and mid-20's mpg diesel trucks.


dont blame yourself, we all just have really good genetics and good luck
norseman1  [Team Member]
10/1/2011 9:02:05 PM EST
Originally Posted By NoStockBikes:
'02 Dmax. Avg is 17-19, depending on how much time I'm spending on the freeway. I used to get 18-20, but I think she might be losing some power in her old age. When I had my injectors replaced (under warranty) at ~175k, they tried to sell me on a turbo rebuild due to some wear.

I was pleasantly surprised to read this thread and not see the usual "I get 26 mpg out of my Cummins". The internet, where everyone has 12" dicks, supermodel girlfriends, and mid-20's mpg diesel trucks.


The diesel that never was ... and it was supposed to save the HUMMER from the chopping block.

No production Duramax V8 I have heard of gets better than 20MPG highway... period. They killed the 4.5L twin turbo Eco version back in 2008 s part of the "going out of bidness sale".

I'm sure there are tuners out there that run it on 100% biodiesel with +2 lbs of boost and have screwed with the running gear.
More often the magazine nerds do stuff like avoiding braking and drive slower than Mrs. Daisy.
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