After introducing the Super Duty in 1998, Ford kept making upgrades to the same basic cab and frame all the way up to 2016. Multiple refreshes across three generations could not hide the fact that this truck rode on old bones, making the 2017 model year redesign a welcome change.

We had a chance test out the new design by borrowing a 2017 F-350 Platinum for a recent trip to West Virginia, which appropriately featured a Miata on trailer behind us. While our race car and trailer combo only made up a fraction of the maximum towing capacity of the diesel-powered behemoth, it gave us an appreciation of having a little extra room while towing.

Our schedule said we had to be on track at Summit Point for a drivers meeting at 8 a.m. on Saturday morning, so we tried to pack as much as possible before the Super Duty arrived in order to hit the road quickly. When the truck arrived on Friday afternoon we ran over to the U-Haul store to pick up a trailer. Hooking up was a breeze — even in the tight confines of the back lot — as the backup camera, along with the birds eye view, quickly got us lined up with the trailer and on our way to load the race car.



After arriving at my brother’s house we started loading up plastic bins and loose parts into the bed, which was coated with an optional $495 Tough Bed spray-in bedliner. The liner is probably a smart option to help minimize damage to the truck’s new aluminum bed. Cost is on par with other premium spray-in liners and it carries the benefit of being covered by the vehicle’s factory warranty.

The tailgate on this trim features an electronic push-button that slowly lowers it via built-in lift supports. It’s helpful, but could be a potential point of failure for trucks operating in rough situations. Our loaner was also equipped with the company’s once-ridiculed “Man Step,” which proved very helpful when loading up (and when using the bed as a viewing platform).

After loading up the bed, we strapped the race car down and did our final checks before hitting the road. The hood opens wide to expose a tech-laden 6.7-liter turbodiesel V8 engine that looks completely foreign when compared to the old 7.3-liter motors I’m used to working on. The hood rises high enough for me to barely reach it when trying to close it. I can see how it could beneficial for future maintenance or repairs as one could easily climb up there for service and not bang their head.

On the road, the 4,000-pound load of Miata and trailer almost seemed like it wasn’t there due to the available torque and the 160 inches of wheelbase. Our route — up through the hills on US-220 toward Roanoke, Virginia — can be challenging for brakes, but the Ford’s transmission programming ensured that the truck dropped a gear any time we started to get into the brakes (and as long as we kept the Tow/Haul Mode enabled).

We made our first stop just as we were approaching I-81 near Roanoke, noting that we had used about nine gallons of diesel to cover 110 miles. That gave us an effective 12 miles per gallon — a figure that would only rise about half a mile per gallon for the remainder of our trip.

Arriving at our hotel in Winchester, Virginia, a little before midnight, we parked the truck in a remote corner of the parking lot and blocked it in order to minimize the chances of anything disappearing. We woke up to an exceptionally chilly morning; luckily I was able to start the truck remotely from our room, which was a few hundred feet away. By the time we got to the truck, the cabin, seats, and steering wheel were all toasty warm.

At the track, we dropped the trailer and moved the spare parts over to Jack’s Silverado so we could use the F-350 to move around the track and watch the sessions. The built-in 400-watt inverter is a welcome addition that saw plenty of use as it charged the batteries for the electric impact and our radios. USB ports were plentiful on the inside, but charging through a standard adapter still seemed to be faster. This truck also features the fancy sliding cupholder we covered last year, though it was mostly kept closed as we used the left side for cell phone and snack storage.

The rest of the interior was appointed in plum leather and wood along with a few aluminum accents which wouldn’t feel out of place in a Navigator. The seats were comfortable and the plastics on the dash felt significantly better than what I’m used to seeing in the XL trim trucks I usually spend time in.

It’s no surprise that Ford is adding an even higher trim level next year, as even this truck — with a total cost approaching $80,000 — seems to have a place among a crowd that wants luxury and the ability to tow their boat, race car, or horse trailer. The F-350 Platinum 4×4 starts at $63,285; adding the diesel engine brings the price to $71,880. Most of the options, like the bed liner or the electronic locking differential, are a few hundred dollars each, and the only other significant add-on is the $2,785 Platinum Ultimate Package that includes a huge twin panel moonroof, towing cameras, and adaptive cruise.

The moonroof, while nice, isn’t something I would spend money on separately, but the towing cameras proved very useful and would be something I would select. We made extensive use of the adaptive cruise, which kept a reasonable distance and was very smooth even with the trailer attached. The lane-keeping function made itself very apparent, shaking the wheel as we were approaching the tiny roads into Summit Point. That is the extent of the steering assist, since the Super Duty appears to still run fully hydraulic steering — preventing it from pushing the wheel back or having the tiny wheel like the F-150 for backing up to a trailer.

The Sync 3 head unit got plenty of use, mostly in its native state playing music over Bluetooth from our phones, though we did try out Apple CarPlay for a bit and the transitions were smooth. There are lots of menus available in the head unit and some of the features are nested deep within them. Unfortunately, we didn’t figure out the Ford had massaging seats until our ride back to North Carolina, as the option was hidden under the advanced seat adjustments.

Parking the truck in smaller parking lots was a bit of a challenge due to the long wheelbase and large overall package. We ended up on the outskirts of some parking lots just to avoid having to re-position the truck multiple times in order to get it into a space. The large tow mirrors were helpful when rolling and backing up and the powered extension feature was useful when greater rearward visibility became necessary.

There is obviously a market for higher-end trims in the Super Duty lineup, as Ford is introducing an even more expensive trim for 2018. Still, we would likely go for something a little more conservative. The diesel motor would be the first thing on the chopping block, as the $8,595 premium is not really justified unless you’re towing huge loads. The F-350’s base 6.2-liter gas V8 is plenty powerful for towing something like a race car and would provide similar fuel economy. Interior appointments are nice but, coming from more of work truck background, an XLT with a few options in the mid-$40s would likely be plenty for our uses.

I hate to bag on the American lifestyle but remote start has to be the most egregious example of waste imaginable. Letting a behemoth of an engine idle and turn chemical energy into unused spinning of the crankshaft just to use waste heat for comfort feels like peak decadence. I first saw remote start being used in Chicago a few years ago, my reaction was similar to when I saw the Draper family dump their waste in the park in the first season of “Mad Men”.

I think you’d find the difference in fuel used would be insignificant. The reason I say that is that I drive a plug in hybrid Fusion. In the winter if I make too many short trips, it will eventually go into “oil maintenance” mode at which time the engine runs constantly. I can tell you that when the car is idling at a traffic light, the rate that the battery charges is very, very low.

Given the high heat requirements of the post combustion particle scrubbing infrastructure of modern diesels, you’re still much better off with a Webasto or Eberspacher for cabin heating a diesel truck, compared to idling it when cold. But that would of course cost a few bucks. Which is anathema on a contemporary $80K truck.

In the days of steam locomotives, they would stoke the fire all night so they would have a full head of steam all the time.

People died as a result of these disasters, and the coal industry was (and continues to be) dangerous for those who work in it, and tremendously damaging to the environment of any community where coal mining is going on.

You have to balance the amount of “waste” you make with what’s good for the country as a whole. Thankfully, diesel trucks don’t pollute all that much (assuming they haven’t gotten the bro-dozer treatment).

I heard that the folks in Kentucky were ecstatic about the rollback of the EPA-mandates re coal and AC power generation. Ditto West Virginia.

Oh, yes! I know of 3 pulmonary and oncology specialist who just put down payments on Gulfstreams, based on the expected emphysema revenues. Winning!

Folks who are economically desperate will do lots of stuff that makes no damn sense, HDC…like continuing to poison their kids’ air and water in exchange for putting food on the table. It’s sad.

And frankly, the blame for that sad situation falls on business and political leaders in coal country who were either too blind or too bought off (my money’s on both) to see the “coal’s going away” handwriting on the wall, and do something about it.

FreedMike, maybe they are just trying to live based on the resources that are available to them. The instinct to survive.

I’ve been away in Canada since the last week in May, and the big resource in the Vancouver, BC, area is……. wood.

Every night we had a fire in the fireplace of the cabin where we stayed. Must have burned four cords of wood while staying there, and then some.

That would not work in the heavily populated areas. That’s where they have gas fire places with fake ceramic logs.

And for electricity we used our Honda EU6500 AC generator, running on gasoline. Ran it most of the time.

FreedMike whether you’re aware of it or not, you’re taking a quite smug approach to the whole issue of resource extraction jobs. There is much truth to local politicians/unions being incredibly entrenched and too lazy to look at any long term prospects while they were on-board the gravy train. But to simply describe people craving a return of good paying coal/gas jobs as wanting things that make “no damn sense” is the height of the “let them eat cake” attitude. You have a better idea for gainful employment for these millions in Appalachia? Let me guess, you want to teach them how to write Java script and put up solar panels all over the mountains of WV?

I agree that longer term plans need to be made to shift the economy, but there is plenty to be said for the need for coal for steel production, and in the near term, yes energy production. Yes, Gas is eating coal’s lunch as far as energy goes, but coal is still undenaibly an efficient and cheap energy source. And steel isn’t going anywhere unless we’re foolhardy enough to keep letting China/India/South Korea eat our lunch with dumping steel in our country.

The near term pushback on some of the overbearing (IMO) emissions regulations, especially in regards to CO2 emissions, along with a few national-security-motivated regulations on foreign steel, and maybe even some subsidies for coal plant exhaust scrubbers could do a lot fairly quickly to re-invigorate coal country. It’s never going to return to the level of employment that it once was, but it could really be a shot in the arm economically for a region that most desperately needs it.

People in Appalaichia are struggling with some severe consequences of a bad economy and lack of jobs (opioid epidemic), you worrying about consequences of slightly increased emissions (especially of something as benign as CO2 for example) is missing the forest for the trees IMO.

gte, Your comment highlights the deficiencies in Appalachia. The problem there is going to take a couple of generations to fix if the correct measures are taken right now to right the wrongs of the past.

The problem is similar to the Rust Belt. People in these regions didn’t want to make the necessary changes for their and their kinfolk’s futures.

An example of how hard it is to make change look to the Southern US States. They are still grappling with the necessary changes to modernise their economies.

These changes can only be made if the people are willing to invest some sacrifices in return for their futures. Most will not do this. It’s like telling someone just put 10% of your pay into an investment fund for your retirement.

Unless their are laws to force people to make these kinds of changes they will not occur, but you will often find they will blame all but themselves for their positions, like you had done regarding steel.

The US is not an effective competitor in steelmaking. The US doesn’t make enough of any given steel to complete certain projects, like the building of gas lines for example.

Coal is becoming passe and gas is overtaking coal. Maybe some coking coal will be needed in the future for carbon in steel.

Appalachia needs to find out what it can offer competitively to the US economy and more importantly globally if they want to realise change in their conditions, just sitting their waiting for a solution will not help them.

They need to stand up for themselves, with the guidance of experienced people to make the necessary changes.

Even hear in Australia we hear about the Appalachian situation and what’s occurring. But most of what we see are desperate people who don’t want change and to go back to the past.

This ain’t going to occur. Real problems need real solutions, not the usual cosmetic bullsh!t that ensues. This is witnessed on many of the programs you see on TV.

Oh, Australia is the same, government just put up a cosmetic fix to appease voters. Normally near an election.

“The US is not an effective competitor in steelmaking. The US doesn’t make enough of any given steel to complete certain projects,”

This is exactly what I’m talking about. I would consider this an issue of national security at this point.

There’s a project to move fracking byproduct with a pipeline near Canton Ohio (steel country). Locals are livid that the pipes being stacked up for the project are all coming from China. This won’t do.

@Highdesertcat – it hasn’t been cold so burning 4 cords of wood is highly unlikely since a cord is 4 feet wide, 4 feet high, and 8 feet long. A pickup with 8 ft box is roughly 1/2 a cord.

You can’t really count a camp fire or fireplace fire as having much of an effect and it isn’t a necessity. A luxury based upon romantic nostalgia.

Lou_BC, it was cold AND damp enough for us to keep the fire lit whenever we were inside the cabin. We burned a lot of wood while there.

I’ve never seen so much greenery, especially coming from the desolate Southwest desert. And the nearest civilization was like 25 miles away.

We’ll be spending this coming Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year’s in Israel, outside of Tel Aviv, with my other sister and her husband.

@highdesertcat – where were you? Dampness is definitely a trait of the lower mainland especially North Vancouver.

” Letting a behemoth of an engine idle and turn chemical energy into unused spinning of the crankshaft just to use waste heat for comfort feels like peak decadence.”

The F350 owned by my son and his business partner runs (and/or idles) from the moment they start their early-morning work day on the ranch until they wrap it up after sunset.

Duh. Thanks for the condescension. Me mentioning the ‘American lifestyle’ and using verbs like ‘feels’ should make it clear that I’m acutely aware that my opinion is not shared by yourself and a large part of your compatriots. The fact that you seem to only be able to think of waste in terms of monetary expenses underscores that difference in thinking.

I realize the “We’re ‘murica, fuck the rest of the world, treehuggers and all those scientist eggheads”-sentiment is pretty popular at the moment. Let’s hope it won’t come back to bite you further down the road.

It’s not an issue of wasting fuel, that’s the owner’s prerogative, the emissions are the main problem. Idling should be a $1500 fine, everywhere.

Heavy weight internals, high pressure fuel pumps and high compression, does shift the optimal “stop-start or idle” point in the direction of idle, for diesels. Doubly so for big truck diesels, which are designed for duty cycles associated more with commercial vehicles than with private passenger cars.

But idling to heat a giant diesel like this, is a complete exercise in futility to begin with. Thermal mass, primary efficiency and the particle scrubbing infrastructure’s requirement for massive amounts of heat dumped into the exhaust, renders the whole project plain stupid from the outset. In Fairbanks in the winter, you can idle a new diesel truck until it shuts down from a clogged particle filter, and still not have a warm cabin.

Remote starters on gas engines, are another matter, though. Especially on a big engines truck. Cover the hood and grill with a blanket, and the gasser’s waste heat will warm the cabin and de-ice the windows, fairly quickly. For a lower total fuel burn than the cost of keeping anything less than a well insulated garage warm 24/7.

For a diesel, get a Webasto or Espar. They’ll ensure engine fluids are nice and supple, and the cabin is warm. All remote started from your cell, or even sat-, phone 30 minutes ahead.

Fuel use aside, I can’t believe everyone is happy to walk into a giant cloud of cold-start emissions (and fill the interior with them). What your engine emits on cold start is far worse than what it does once warmed up. Cold-start emissions are full of carbon monoxide and small particulates, both of which will affect your health if you breathe large concentrations of them regularly.

The only remote start feature I’ll use is one on a big-battery hybrid where the engine won’t actually run.

Or maybe there’s a difference between starting the car and driving away before the exhaust has a chance to accumulate, and starting the car and letting a cloud of exhaust form around it for ten minutes.

Diesels were made for block heaters, and diesels just don’t warm up as fast as a gas engine when idling.

Remote start on gas cars, however, is worth its weight in gold if you have babies, elderly, or infirm passengers and your car sits outside frequently.

Traditional “truck guys”, who are the ones big diesel trucks are designed for even if not the only ones they are bought by, are far less queasy about the occasional whiff of exahust, than the average “I’m gonna die of cancer since my mom fed me from milk bottles containing BPA when I was a kid” millennial.

In the winter, truckers used to, heck still do in some places and some trucks, sleep in their cabs with the engine idling all night to keep the sleeper hot. And truckers hang out at truck stops, which are hardly exhaust free zones…

People who work with machines too power demanding to be electric, are pretty much used to working around the exhaust such machines emit. Whether that be two stroke leaf blowers or diesel engines. And, compared to what passes for “air quality standards” in most American homes and offices, I doubt their lungs are any worse off in aggregate, than those of their mold huffing cubicle bound brethren.

But downtown Los Angeles, NYC, Atlanta, Boston, Miami, etc? If I lived there, I would strenuously object to the pollution and smell.

Auxiliary cabin heaters are an option on the diesel Fords; probably it was *running one* while it was idling to heat up.

As more of a GM fan than Ford, it always annoyed me that GM made fun of the “Man Step”. Don’t know if that’s the official name, if it is, it’s stupid. Other than that, I have read multiple times that it works very well. I know that given the current height of most pickups now-a-days, it’s a requirement. When I borrow my friend’s far more pedestrian 2WD 2004 Tundra, I need a step ladder to get into the bed

The hood opens wide to expose a tech-laden 6.7-liter turbodiesel V8 engine that looks completely when compared to the old 7.3-liter motors I’m used to working on.

And to think I spent much of my racing career using using a 15 year old F-250 with no air conditioning as a tow vehicle.

We’ve hauled with all kinds of stuff including our 19 year old GMC with no A/C but having some creature comforts is nice especially when you have to be at the track early the next morning.

Trucks aren’t “me.” I’ll get that out of the way right off the bat. I wouldn’t buy a truck because I simply have no use for one, and unlike a lot of folks around here who don’t have any use for them but buy them anyway, I don’t need to advertise my manliness, or my politics.

(But the day I drop $78,000 on a truck is the day that they start an ice fishing tournament in hell.)

The sad thing is you’d be hard pressed to find an American sedan (at any price) with an interior that nice.

I wholeheartedly believe that the available interior appointments (and general leg and headroom) account for a small but significant portion of truck sales.

It seems hard to believe now that when Ford and GM introduced crew cabs in the 1/2 ton class (and started to offer 3/4 and 1 ton trucks with short beds) it was seen as “daring” and they weren’t sure how many they would sell.

I don’t know if you’ve actually checked out the interior on one of these “Platinum” F-series trucks or not, but I have. My conclusion? It looks lux as hell, but it really isn’t – lots of cheap plastic in there, including the wood, which appears to be fake. It’s not even close to being as high quality as the interior in, say, a Black Label Continental, or an Escalade, or a XTS/CT6 with the Platinum trim. Top of the line Grand Cherokees are also notably high-quality inside.

Yep. What FreedMike said. Even the interior on a $50k loaded Chrysler 300 feels better than this one.

Hey those quilted leather and open pore wood trimmed 300s don’t just have an F150 beating interior. It’s hard to find anywhere close to that outside of a 6-figure sedan. Granted, only a handful of 300s are equipped like that.

Was it Car and Driver that said the F-body died when pickups became fashionable? I guess the same way jeans became a fashion item in the 70s.

This. I believe the today’s pickup trucks are the 21st century versions of a ’77 Trans Am. Probably the same buyer demographic as well.

So when can I get a Sierra with a SCREAMING CHICKEN on the hood? And can I get a decal that says 6.2 Liter V8 on the power bulge? :-)

LOL, I bet if they ever do a sequel to “Smokey and the Bandit,” the Bandit-mobile will be a F-150 Raptor. I’ll put money on it.

These trucks are nice but expensive and for the price they are maybe the manufacturers could spend a little time to improve the “Mitsubishi” plastics that make up the interior.

They are not luxurious like you state or the author. They are gaudy and cheap, just leather, bling and bullsh!t.

They are still a commercial vehicle, no different to mine. I think this is what people need to realise, not talk up and overstate the “quality” of a vehicle, with little quality.

PrincipalDan, Sorry, you do view the interior as I do, except I do believe the interior of a Escalade is “cheap” as well.

Their “cheap interiors” especially the plastics, are a nod, tip of the hat to their “working class” landscaper/construction/industry fraternity. Seriously, no one that’s serious about these “trucks” really cares. So you never forget you’re not in a German or English snob mobile.

A “Lariat” *maybe* but top luxury trucks aren’t for me either. But I never say “never!”. I know “I can’t take it with me!” when I die, nor do I want to leave much for my ungrateful kids.

Seconded, FreedMike. Sometimes, I get swept up in the romance of owning a truck. But then I recall the added maintenance costs, the gas bill and “no thanks, I don’t want to DD that…really” quality of the ’07 Ram I owned prior. And that’s usually enough to remind me to be content with my Vibe.

-large interior that you can get without huge center consoles that take up 1/3 of the room in a sedan and cross overs

-the suspension designs are getting so good, they ride better than most sedans out there. my 2500 rides no worse than my in law’s 2016 Lexus ES on rough roads. You can thank the “we will make our sedans sporty” philosophy from Toyota.

-the fuel economy of 1/2 tons are creeping up to small cross over mpgs of just a few years ago. My 1500 gets the same mpg as the 2008 Rav4 I had in city and on the freeway

I drive it because it is the best tool for what I want, and if it makes some people jealous, well, I drive the speed limit so they can enjoy looking at me just a little bit longer. :)

Pickup trucks are okay as DDs only for those who never, ever venture anywhere near a city. Almost no city parking spot will fit them.

Then all those 1/2 ton and 3/4 tons I see parked in city parking lots around me in the SF Bay Area must all be mirages.

In fact I better go make sure my truck parked in the middle of the city in a parking garage is real. I thought I used these crazy things called “mirrors” and some how backed into a space between a 4Runner and an Armada with plenty of room on either side. I can’t take all this illusion anymore. Those things are as tall and as wide as my truck, they must be imaginary too.

Fine, you *can* drive a pickup in the city, but it’s not the best tool for the job in those circumstances. There are a few fullsize 1500s in my condo parking garage (in the suburbs of a large city), and every time I’m following one of these trucks out of the garage, they inevitably have to back up mid corner a couple times each level, because they can’t quite make the turn in one go. I can’t imagine getting that much joy out of a truck to voluntarily subject myself to that multiple times a day just to leave home.

Or you’re not really in the city, but the suburbs. ” You better call the cities of San Francisco, San Jose and Oakland and let them know that they are not really cities. Also Los Angeles, I work part time there, make sure you call them too and let them know you decided they are the suburbs.

Funny thing, I haven’t gotten a single parking ticket in these “suburbs” for taking up two spaces or over the lines. Those lazy suburban metermaids are just too lax I tell ya!

More like venture near certain streets in the absolute inner core area of a very small handful of cities.

If intercity, parking structure, beach community “parking spaces” and aisles were that narrow and tight, most compact car drivers couldn’t cope or get around.

Most “compact car” owners are *spatially* inept, especially if that’s all they’re ever driven. They “need” more space around them than they actually use, thankfully.

Sure yeah it takes a little more “effort” to get a fullsize truck into a “big city” parking space, but hell yes it’s worth it!

My next door neighbor (in a not-particularly-dense, but old, part of the city) has a 2014 crew cab short bed F-150. It doesn’t fit in the marked parking lane even when he jams the tires into the curb, because it’s about two inches too wide. Parking enforcement ignores it.

My LS460, at 198″, is shorter than any current pickup. It fits with literally three or four inches to spare in my driveway, and with about eight inches to spare in the garage. This is a very standard assembly-line 1953 city house.

No one but you is gonna notice a couple inches “over the line”. The good news is most cars in big major cities are “compacts”, easily allowing for the occasional fullsize pickup/SUV/towncar, short bus, delivery van, etc, around them.

But if you live in a substandard community, or it has specific variances to the US building code, who’s fault is that? Many homes that you think are “homes” are actually free-standing “condo” homes where developers simply make garages and driveways as small as they wish, since they’re basically “storage facilities” you can also live in.

If you think a 2500 rides no worse than a Lexus, you must live where there are some seriously buttery smooth roads, because where I live (in the summer these days anyway) a 1500 is like a trampoline, and a 2500 just about requires a kidney belt. A 3500 (kid brother owns one) requires a chiropractor on standby. Or your inlaws Lexus is slammed to the ground on stretched rubberbands.

Truck people are weird. I can’t imagine driving a pickup unless I had some actual need of hauling crap around (in the open) on a daily basis. And even then, 90% of the time a van would be more suitable for most work.

If you know how to proper air down a truck when not loaded, the new 3/4 tons are fine. The people who think 3/4 tons ride badly are the ones who at most rode in one with psi spec’ed for a full load with an empty and wonder why the bed is bouncing all over the place.

For the price of this thing, you can get a good enough working truck AND a properly nice car to drive around when you aren’t towing anything.

@krhodes1- Any property is going to be in the middle of a desert at that price. You should probably at least spring for the Raptor.

-large interior that you can get without huge center consoles that take up 1/3 of the room in a sedan and cross overs

-the suspension designs are getting so good, they ride better than most sedans out there. my 2500 rides no worse than my in law’s 2016 Lexus ES on rough roads. You can thank the “we will make our sedans sporty” philosophy from Toyota.

-the fuel economy of 1/2 tons are creeping up to small cross over mpgs of just a few years ago. My 1500 gets the same mpg as the 2008 Rav4 I had in city and on the freeway

I drive it because it is the best tool for what I want, and if it makes some people jealous, well, I drive the speed limit so they can enjoy looking at me just a little bit longer. :)

Your b-I-l’s Lexus must have blown out shocks, or you must carry around 1000 lbs. of bricks in your truck bed. In 2015, I test drove all of the half and three quarter ton pickups in my search for a tow vehicle for my new travel trailer. All of the big trucks were quite stiff when riding empty. The half tons were pretty good.

I had my butt in 2004 GMC Sierra HD 2500 for 13 years. Put 2500 lbs in the bed of that baby and it rode like a dream. Otherwise not so much. Damn I miss that truck! But for a daily driver you could a LOT better.

look at what the suspension on a 2017 Ram 2500 looks like, and compare it to a 2004 Sierra. Maybe then you would have an idea that HD trucks have come a long way since 90’s GM technology.

“The hood rises high enough for me to barely reach it when trying to close it. I can see how it could beneficial for future maintenance or repairs as one could easily climb up there for service and not bang their head.”

Not so much. Doing anything more complicated than an oil change on the 6.7 required a cab lift on the previous gen, and I doubt this one is any better.

It takes a major problem, blown head gasket or worse, to “require” lifting the cab off. Still any good mechanic can do any job on any Ford/GM diesel engine without lifting off the cab. Do they “want to”? That’s a different story!

It became tougher to work on Ford/GM diesels when they flattened out the slope of the windshields approx ’99/2000+, thereby extending, overhanging the top of the firewall, partly over engine.

But you’ve gotta do something really dumb, or major neglect, most of the time to do major damage to a modern diesel, and or ignore all the warning signs.

The last 3 years of the 6.0 Power stroke are fast becoming collectible “classics” in high demand, with or without “bulletproofing”. They’re well “sorted” thanks to innovative independent shops and the aftermarket. Although early (disaster) 6.0s will accept all later Ford “updates”.

They’re the last of the postmodern, “pre emissions” trucks, with full diagnostics, huge variable-turbo, 32 valves, overbuilt 5-speed auto, coil front-end (2wd/4X4), short turn-radius and available King Ranch. What’s nuts is the demand for loaded 6.0 Excursions, even 2wd.

There is a lot of things you can do without pulling the cab but you just have to have the extra time to do it that way. The cab comes off because it is that much quicker.

I think it’s called “Brunello” leather? It’s a nice shade, I was looking at a F250 Platinum over the weekend, dark grey “Granite” exterior paint with this leather interior….very nice.

I think one of these will be my next truck after the Raptor gets too many miles on it, and yes it will be my DD. The next round of Employee Pricing promotions will knock $12K off the price of a Platinum before the delivery rebates, that’s a lot of truck for the money. You can get these with 4.30 gears from the factory, throw a set of 37s on it…..done!

SWEEET!!! I am all over this thing, need one badly. I’ve got a 60 mile round trip commute every day in heavy traffic and live in a crowded suburban area. BUT…..I had to pick up a 2×4 last weekend at Home Depot so this will be perfect for me!

Bozi – have you considered reviewing a Transit for the same sorts of duties? I’ve driven a ’14 Silverado and put 600 miles on a brand new Titan (non XD), and none held a candle to the driving dynamics and long haul comfort of the high-roof Transit 350 I put 1,800 miles on over the summer.

I’ve rented a Transit from U-Haul previously and I like it. Might have to see if I can borrow one to test towing.

Weird truck. In my view, the price is ridiculous for just a bunch of nice chairs and some electronics. However, it must make sense to a lot of people like Baruth mentioned in R/T.

Bozi, the gas engine versions of these trucks will not get anywhere near the fuel economy of their diesel powered counterparts. Most tests show a 2-4 mpg difference. The real reason to buy the diesel is not fuel economy (the payback period for the extra cost of the diesel is very long). The real reason to have the diesel is a much more pleasant driving experience if you’re towing 6,000 to 10,000 pounds worth of trailer. Not only is the Ford diesel greater in absolute horsepower than any gas engine available in a pickup, but the massive torque will mean that the engine lives at under 2,000 rpm while the gasoline counterpart is wailing away at 3,000 rpm or more pulling the same load up a grade. Secondly, the diesel exhaust brake provides much more engine braking than is provided by a gasoline engine. Spend a little time around folks who pull trailers and they’ll explain why they went for the oil-burner.

You’re absolutely right. I am sure that once you get closer to 10,000 pounds that the diesel makes life a lot easier.

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