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 > Opinion: best value HD truck under 20k?

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KD4UPL

Swoope, VA

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Posted: 04/29/20 07:22pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Best value under $20,000 won't be a diesel. A GM 8.1L is a great truck. Even a GM 6.0 is okay depending on what you want to do with it.
I'd avoid 2001 thru 2004.5 GM Duramax trucks unless you like spending thousands on injectors. Otherwise an LLY is a good truck. My personal daily driven 2005 LLY has 263,000 miles on it and performs hauling and towing duties quite well. The engine has never been apart.

FishOnOne

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Posted: 04/29/20 07:43pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

For that amount of $$$ and assuming a not too old of a truck I would say a Ford Super Duty 6.2 or a GM 6.0.


'12 Ford Super Duty FX4 ELD CC 6.7 PSD 400HP 800ft/lbs
"200k Mile Club"
'16 Sprinter 319MKS "Wide Body"


ExxWhy

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Posted: 04/29/20 08:15pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I say it comes down to individual condition of the truck in question. There is no one model that is so superior that it trumps condition.

Grit dog

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Posted: 04/29/20 09:44pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

There's a bit more to it than that.
Gaz or deezul? And how much and where do you plan to tow?

Under $20k = generally lowest miles and best condition with less emphasis on brand. And ext cabs don't fetch near as much as crew cabs so if you can get by with an ext cab you can get alot more truck for the money.

But there are a ton of options.
I'm a Dodge fan, but HD Ram gassers would be 3rd on the list up until the new 8 speed autos, unless it was a cherry old V10 or 360 with a manual trans.
GM/Ford, old low mile (rare) 5-6 speed manual trucks. 8.1/ZF6 is probably one of the best tow rig gassers yet to date.

8.1 Allison GM or V10/Torqueshift Ford would be my pick for old auto trans gassers.

Even older, V10 Ford/4r110 or 6.0 GM/4L80 if not towing heavy or mountians. The even older GMT400 trucks with 350s or 454s are good, but finding any in this paragraph low miles is going to be a challenge, but will be in the sub $10k category.

If I was intent on spending $20k to get the best gasser I'd be looking for a 6.0/6 speed GM or a 6.2L Ford. Early 6.2s have the same trans as the 6.7 so they are virtually indestructible behind the gasser.


Diesel, $20k to burn, Low mile 2nd or 3rd Gen Cummins ext or quad cab, stick shift only. You'd have to pay me to tow heavy with a Cummins with a 4 speed auto.

7.3 Power strokes are really good, but you'll spend $20k to get a cherry low mile one. Can find a Good Ram cheaper.

Best combo from the early 2000s if you want an auto trans is a LB7/Allison Dmax. Injector issues are a thing of the past, if it's had good injectors put in it in the last 10 years and it'll outperform a 7.3 or Cummins auto trans truck apples to apples.

Like I said, have to be more specific in what you're looking for or you'll get more answers like mine.


2016 Ram 2500, MotorOps.ca EFIlive tuned, 5” turbo back, 6" lift on 37s
2017 Heartland Torque T29

Grit dog

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Posted: 04/29/20 09:46pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

ExxWhy wrote:

I say it comes down to individual condition of the truck in question. There is no one model that is so superior that it trumps condition.


^This plays as much a part as the actual brand of vehicle for sure.

Buying used vehicles, especially older ones, you're buying the previous owner(s) as much as the vehicle itself.

Grit dog

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Posted: 04/29/20 09:48pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

FishOnOne wrote:

For that amount of $$$ and assuming a not too old of a truck I would say a Ford Super Duty 6.2 or a GM 6.0.


Succinctly, this ^.

Bionic Man

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Posted: 04/29/20 10:06pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I think everyone is going to have a different opinion of "best value". And it would also depend on what your intended purpose is.

$20k isn't going to get you much by way of a diesel. Unless you are looking at some of the "bad" engines.

To me, best value would likely be a 2500 gasser. 6.4 Hemi or 6.2 Ford.


2012 RAM 3500 Laramie Longhorn DRW CC 4x4 Max Tow, Cummins HO, 60 gallon RDS aux fuel tank, Reese 18k Elite hitch
2003 Dodge Ram 3500 QC SB 4x4 Cummins HO NV5600 with Smarty JR, Jacobs EB (sold)
2002 Gulf Stream Sea Hawk 29FRB with Honda EV6010

mtofell1

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Posted: 04/30/20 01:23am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I'd go gasser since for 20K you'd be looking at something north of 150K miles in diesel (maybe even 200K). Ironically, I just looked up the KBB value of my 2014 6.4 Hemi, 4X4, CC, 95K miles - trade-in is still 27K!! You might have to go back to 2010-2012 or up in miles a lot to get to 20K. I can't believe how high values are on trucks. If I had 20K I'd probably go for a Chevy/GMC 6.0 - easy to work on, trusted drive train and tranny.

bucky

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Posted: 04/30/20 05:47am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

If you are looking at diesel here are a couple of things to watch out for.
If someone tells you a 6.0 Powerstroke is bulletproofed unless there are receipts assume it is not. BTW to confuse the issue they were not all bad stock.
The younger Cummins owners tend to have all grades of deletes and tuners going on. Throw in a lift kit to really ruin it as a tow vehicle. Emission tests are becoming more and more common at inspection time.
A long bed in any brand is less likely to be juiced. Think well maintained municipality auctions.
A fifth wheel hitch in a truck is a good sign. And I don't mean a goose neck. Half of livestock and equipment haulers call a goose neck a fifth wheel. Don't drive 3 hours to look at a truck without asking first.
Have fun looking.


2005 Cummins 3500 2WD LB quad cab dually pulling a 2014 Blue Ridge 3025RL


A1ARealtorRick

Gulf Shores, AL

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Posted: 04/30/20 07:07am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

jdc1 wrote:

7.3 or 5.9 diesel. You won't be sorry. I've owned both.


My son has been in the automobile business for over 25 years, and specializes in pre-owned trucks. He agrees that you're right-on with the 7.3 Powerstroke or 5.9 Cummins. Those are positively the top two, hands down.

Also, service records mean a LOT when it comes to such a purchase, because you and I both know you won't be buying a spring chicken for under-20K!!

Best of luck in your quest.

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