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Hozzr1

Another tow vehicle question

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Hozzr1

Good morning guys hope everyone had a good weekend on the water. Had a quick question out there for you guys on tow vehicle.

Right now I have a 2011 silverado 5.3 4x4 6dpd hd trailering package. I tow 80mi round trip to the lake 1/2 of which are windy steeper graded roads. For the most part it tows our VLX great, works up some of the steeper stuff but overall good. Tranny temp hovers around 199 peaked yesterday at 214. So here comes the question of opinion and I know there is no comparison Btwn diesel and gas but rather want to know what you guys would do.

At the end of the year I have the ability to possibly trade a buddy of mine who is selling his trailer for a motor home. So here is the trade my truck currently 18k miles. For his 07 gmc Sierra 4x4 dmax with 60k. Now I know that that thing would be fantastic to tow with as I owned one years ago. But mine tows ok. 90% of the time as a daily driver mine would be more comfortable and cheaper buying gas vs diesel. My main concern is the wear and tear on mine through the years working it will it hold up. So with that what would you guys do?!?

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Bozboat

get the duramax. I had an 2004 that I should have kept. (by the way, tow threads are really fun, you will get to hear from everyone, from chevy to volkswagon)

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Hozzr1

THats the way I m leaning towards(DMax) just wondering if it's overkill for the boat? and using it as the daily driver. But I did love my 05' wish I would've never sold it.

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gorilla

As Boz said, get the diesel if you can afford it. I now own 2 diesels, Dodge Cummins and VW Touareg and will never go gas again. A diesel is more $$, but will pay for itself eventually. Only issue, diesels are heavy and wear front end components. So, make sure the Duramax has had a good inspection.

I'm not a brand "whore" and like all 3 of the domestic offerings, but the Mega Cab Dodge is NICE for hauling around 4 people with the needed gear.

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Hozzr1

It's a guy I work with and he's more type A about his vehicles than me, if that's possible. truck still looks brand new. keep the posts coming, I think I know where this is headed.

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jkendallmsce

As Boz said, get the diesel if you can afford it. I now own 2 diesels, Dodge Cummins and VW Touareg and will never go gas again. A diesel is more $$, but will pay for itself eventually. Only issue, diesels are heavy and wear front end components. So, make sure the Duramax has had a good inspection.

I'm not a brand "whore" and like all 3 of the domestic offerings, but the Mega Cab Dodge is NICE for hauling around 4 people with the needed gear.

we are kinda looking, and am interested in what you like about your Toureg? I have never driven one, but there are others on this site that, like you, rave about them. thanks

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gorilla

I think I know where this is headed.

Yup, it ends with you in a Duramax. Hahahaha

Anyway, I DD my Cummins during the winter (ride motorcycle when weather is nice) and I make sure it gets fully warmed up since diesels take a while to get up to temps. What helps my truck is pulling a snowmobile trailer every weekend during the winter to make sure to keep water/condensation build up in the oil. I know it may be a little hard on the motor not getting fully warmed up, but my commute is pretty short. I just make sure to get it nice a warm as often as I can.

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nyryan2001

Hozzr1-

I went thru the SAME problem on the SAME engine and tranny. My last was the Chevy Trailblazer with the 5.3L. While GMs run hot normally anyhow, 210degs, when towing a 4000-5000lb old boat it would start to overheat in 90deg+ temps.

The Chevy mechanics talked to me like I was stupid, said that I was towing heavier than what was rated or driving it too hard. I replaced the f'n fan clutch, didnt fix the problem...AND i even had an aftermarket Flex-a-cool electric fan system installed. Still over heated. I got so mad one day towing it was only 70deg and it started to over heated I pulled right up into the Chevy dealership with the 4k lb boat attached and had them tell me that I was towing beyond the limits. Long story short, it likely only gonna get worse.

Based on that interaction with Chevy, how they couldnt figure it out, I got rid of it and got the 2010 Toyota Tundra and it's been 100% flawless towing a 7500lb boat.

everyone loves the power, towing and longevity of diesels...... till there is a repair. nearly x2 anything you will see on a 1/2 ton unless you do the work yourself. Just something to keep in mind... and yes those new F250s and F350s with the 6.7L are straight boss. True 15-20mpg on the highway..

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teamerickson

we are kinda looking, and am interested in what you like about your Toureg? I have never driven one, but there are others on this site that, like you, rave about them. thanks

The tourag is interesting. Probably need to get the V8. People say it chugs gas though (both V8 and V6).

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gorilla

The tourag is interesting. Probably need to get the V8. People say it chugs gas though (both V8 and V6).

I've got the diesel Touareg. Better mpg than the other 2 motors.

we are kinda looking, and am interested in what you like about your Toureg? I have never driven one, but there are others on this site that, like you, rave about them. thanks

Ours is a 2010 V6 TDi and love it. Comfortable on long trips and will pull my heavy a** 23LSV if needed. Get the diesel though, great mpg and pulling power.

To the OP, sorry for getting a bit off topic.

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Hozzr1

great info guys. NYRyan I'm with you, just seems weird on the tranny temp. Those temps were from yesterday. 80' degrees on way up, averaged 199' on temp and peaked at 205'. On the way home it was 91' outside tranny ran at 205' average and peaked at 214'. Just seems hi for a truck that supposed to tow 9500lbs. truck does fine on the main road but when we get up the hill a bit into the winding roads and grades it lugs up a few of them. Like I said I'm just trying to way out the pros and cons. I know the diesel is the way to go for towing, but the times I'm not towing nice to have the smaller pickup. then it becomes newer truck vs a little bit older but still looks new and is a very nice truck for Diesel. Decisions Decisions

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gorilla

Ok, on the tranny temps, we're u pulling uphill when it peaked 214? If so, it is VERY likely that your tranny torque converter wasn't locked up. I have a gauge on mine that has peaked at 230, but my gauge reader on the output line coming out of the torque converter. That line is the hottest fluid that the tranny sees, the fluid coming out of the slipping converter. Your gauge is most likely in the pan or valve body and will read lower than mine. As soon as my torque converter locked up, I dropped pretty rapidly to 190. Just some info to think about.

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Hozzr1

Gorilla, Other than hearing tranny temps on the other forums and hearing that those are kind of high. I know nothing about where the gauges are located. That 214 temp was through the winding up and down hill grades coming back. I've owned manny GM vehicles and loved everyone of them. But I am still trying to get used to the newer torque converters, the different shift points and now the Variable cylinder management. Granted VCM never kicks in while towing. NOw with the 6 speeds they are putting in the 3.42 gearing. Not sure if this was right or not but I did put it in manual 4 mode yesterday so that it would lock out 5 and 6 gear and put in tow haul mode. That did keep it from doing a lot of shifting and seemed to pull better. Normally I just ran the truck in tow haul. I guess this is part of my question out there too is that am I fine with my 1/2 ton and I'm just wanted the biggest and best? OR is there really a need for longevity in the diesel? I see a ton of guys here that tow with there 1/2 tons and are fine.

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jesutton3

I'm not sure what cab and bed configurations the two trucks have but if you look at the actual numbers you might be suprised. When looking at my current truck (2011 F250) I compared the dimensions for the 250 and 150 trucks. With the same cab and bed the only difference was height and mirror width. The length, width, and wheel base were all the same. So yes the 250 looks like a monster compared to the 150 but they are actually the same size.

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Hozzr1

Both are crew cab short box. 9" different in length due to longer bed on 2500 hd

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Bozboat

....I guess this is part of my question out there too is that am I fine with my 1/2 ton and I'm just wanted the biggest and best? OR is there really a need for longevity in the diesel? I see a ton of guys here that tow with there 1/2 tons and are fine.

While there are those who will swear they save money driving a big diesel, I found that not to be the case. I think if your daily drive was long enough or you put 25000 plus miles a year on a truck you might get closer to saving some money. For me, replacing the two big batteries, the expensive oil changes, fuel filter changes, ball joints, and the higher price of fuel pretty much wiped out the mpg savings, but I did not drive it enough, in fact part of my decision to trade the duramax was based on not driving far enough between start and stop to actually warm the engine to operating temp. (the other reason was I got tired of dealing with the damage from a battery that exploded)

In my way of looking at this, buy it if you would enjoy driving it and get rid of it when you decide to move on. It is truly big fun to be able to move out of the slow lane and charge up the hill pulling a heavy trailer.

I got rid of my 5.3s because they were not fun to drive at highway speeds and didn't like to have to drop into 3rd or 4th gear pulling a trailer. I could have saved some money by slowing down, but what fun would that have been.

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Rznhales

I got rid of my 2500HD due to crappy mileage and ride, granted it was the 8.1liter motor. Traded it for the new 5.3 and hate the towing issue as well. That being said you can get the new Max edition that puts a 6.0 liter gas motor in the half ton package.

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Bozboat

I tested the chevy 1500 HD for a week (a few years ago). Could not get above 10 mpg in town only. It did have the 4 wheel steering that was pretty fun.

If moving beyond the OP question of 5.3 newer or 2006 well kept duramax, my current solution is the F-150 Ecoboost, which has amazing power at 2000 rpms. Closet thing to a diesel in power and while the ecoboost does not get as good of mileage towing as some, it does get good mileage. Still haven't gotten used to the lack of cool motor noises, but the sheer power is amazing.

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jesutton3

Both are crew cab short box. 9" different in length due to longer bed on 2500 hd

Not sure on the Chevy but Ford has two box lengths for the Crew Cab 1/2 ton. A 4' something and the other the same as the 3/4+ ton.

For what I use it for the 4' something bed is just too short. My opinion only, your mileage may vary.

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kengrutza

I had an 01 Tahoe with the 5.3 and it was ok for towing, hills with the Bu it struggled a bit, but made it. I recently went back in time and got a 99 Tahoe with the 5.7 and have put a Jet Performance Stage 1 chip in it, a K&N air filter system and a Cat back Exhaust system on it. Recent;y towed the BU and was almost 14 mpg and no strains up and down hills. Will take it out and test it on a longer trip next month but, the 5.7 seems to be the best choice in the Tahoe/Suburban/1500/25000 for my $$.

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Tims

we are kinda looking, and am interested in what you like about your Toureg? I have never driven one, but there are others on this site that, like you, rave about them. thanks

I have a 2012 Touareg with the 3.0 TDI diesel and 8 speed auto. Love it!!! 32 mpg on the highway, over 400 pound feet of torque, "Audi like" fit and finish, 7800 lb towing capacity, similar in price to a Chevy Tahoe but out perfroms it everywhere except physical size. They are built in eastern Eurpoe on the same line as the Porsche Cayenne and Audi Q5/Q7.

I had my doubts on the towing ability and actually got the dealer to let me hook up my boat before I would commit. Needless to say, it performed much better than expected and towing my VLX is a breeze (and this is coming off of a 2008 F-250 Super Duty with the 6.4 Powerstroke.)

The only thing I don't like so far is the dealership experience. I think the Touareg is a bit of an odd ball for VW as they are used to dealing wiht Jetta's and GTI's, not premium SUV's.

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Hozzr1

Good point... I only drive about 12000 miles a year, and a lot of in town country roads driving. This is why the question. While the diesel would be awesome for towing the daily driving of a half ton is better. The other option I was thinking of doing was an intake and exhaust, maybe a programmer just not sure if that is worth it. Only reason I thought of going to the diesel is because it would be a trade. I think my wife would divorce me if I bought another new truck. lol. With that being said I could keep the current and upgrade it or trade to the diesel. I love my daily driver, but it lacks towing the BU up the winding grades. Thanks fro the input guys..

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gorilla

If u don't go diesel, just make sure you get a bigger gas motor. The in town driving does suck pretty bad with my Mega Cab, but it's my tow vehicle. It makes up for it on the longer trips. I just wish my commute was longer so it would allow the truck to fully warm up on cold days. I plug in the block heater AND it's in my garage that rarely sees below 45-50 degrees in the middle of the winter.

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jkendallmsce

I have a 2012 Touareg with the 3.0 TDI diesel and 8 speed auto. Love it!!! 32 mpg on the highway, over 400 pound feet of torque, "Audi like" fit and finish, 7800 lb towing capacity, similar in price to a Chevy Tahoe but out perfroms it everywhere except physical size. They are built in eastern Eurpoe on the same line as the Porsche Cayenne and Audi Q5/Q7.

I had my doubts on the towing ability and actually got the dealer to let me hook up my boat before I would commit. Needless to say, it performed much better than expected and towing my VLX is a breeze (and this is coming off of a 2008 F-250 Super Duty with the 6.4 Powerstroke.)

The only thing I don't like so far is the dealership experience. I think the Touareg is a bit of an odd ball for VW as they are used to dealing wiht Jetta's and GTI's, not premium SUV's.

Thanks for the input. 32 mpg is tough to beat. and you can never have too much HP and TQ....400 will get ya down the road and up the hill no problem.

My Rainier with the 5.3L has approx 325-335 TQ, so the added TQ would be nice, but I gotta imagine the Toureg is a tad heavier than my Rainier.

Are there any mods like with most of the diesels to gain HP and TQ?

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Tims

Thanks for the input. 32 mpg is tough to beat. and you can never have too much HP and TQ....400 will get ya down the road and up the hill no problem.

My Rainier with the 5.3L has approx 325-335 TQ, so the added TQ would be nice, but I gotta imagine the Toureg is a tad heavier than my Rainier.

Are there any mods like with most of the diesels to gain HP and TQ?

The diesel T-reg has a curb weight of 4974. Probably 300 or so pounds heavier than your Buick if it has AWD, but the 8 speed auto on the T-reg does a great job keeping you in the meat of the Torque range giving you a 7 sec 0-60 time. There are a couple of tuners that will re-programm the ECU which will bring the Tq numbers in the 500 pound feet range if you need more.

You can get the same engine and drivetrain in the 2013 Cayenne if you want another option. You get the better suspension and Porsche grade interior / looks.

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