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Old 04-20-2009, 07:43 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Buying a Dodge, need some help...

So this will be my first Diesel, I no longer am in the 4x4 game for now but do tow a 4000# boat weekly in the summertime.

My budget is right around 20-30K, so that puts me in anything from an 05 to an 08 for a crew or mega cab 4x4 short bed with less than 50K

so the question is 5.9L or 6.7? I have heard they bumped up the displacement because all the smog equipment robbed power so they compensated.

Also 4 speed auto or 6 spd auto? Cant have a manual for the wife pulling out the boat up the steep ass ramp we use. Does more gears leave me ready for more problems?

I don't plan on anything more than a leveling kit and 33s, maybe just exhaust and air filter/intake, but nothing major due to the lovely CA smog thats coming in '10. If I could get one thats all stock thats ideal.

I've tried to research on CF and here and just need to get a simple conversation going from people who've had these trucks and have an opinion.

I realize if I get an 05-07.5 it will be the 4 speed and 5.9, just wondering if one is much better in the long run than the other, I plan on having the rig for a long time.

I live in the Valley so not alot of hills, maybe a trip to the mountains with the boat once a summer.


Also what is a VP44 mentioned in one of the other posts?
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Old 04-20-2009, 08:21 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Stick with the 5.9. Save some loot and go with a built trans. Add a gauges and a programmer to enjoy the fuel economy bump. Stock trucks will handle 33s with no issues. 3rd Gens can run 35s with a spacer on the front.
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Old 04-20-2009, 09:13 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WhiskeyTango View Post
so the question is 5.9L or 6.7? I have heard they bumped up the displacement because all the smog equipment robbed power so they compensated.

Also 4 speed auto or 6 spd auto? Cant have a manual for the wife pulling out the boat up the steep ass ramp we use. Does more gears leave me ready for more problems?

I don't plan on anything more than a leveling kit and 33s, maybe just exhaust and air filter/intake, but nothing major due to the lovely CA smog thats coming in '10. If I could get one thats all stock thats ideal.
IMHO, I would stick with a pre '07 emissions truck regardless of what brand light duty diesel pickup you are looking at. The DPFs, VGTs, and other things the manufacturers have used to make the trucks pass emissions are likely to make the cost of vehicle ownership higher over the long term.

As far as transmissions go, the 5.9L was only available with the 4 speed OD torqueflite. The 6 speed automatics came out at the same time as the 6.7L motor. Either trans is decent and will last fine as long as you don't abuse it. Putting a big programmer or chip on it will most definitely shorten its life.

I consider an intake and exhaust as "supporting mods." I really wouldn't expect a ton of improvement in the power department from it but you would likely net some lower EGTs and faster spooling.
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Old 04-20-2009, 09:37 AM   #4 (permalink)
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I just bought a 6.7L and haven't had any trouble so far at 7,500 miles but I've read a lot of stories of people having trouble. I've been putting some decent weight behind mine on a regular basis which seems to be the key, if it's more of a daily driver not towing a lot you'll have trouble.

I sold my 98 5.9 when I got this new truck, I loved the old 12 valve but this new truck is nice. I like the interior, it's simple and comfortable. The new 6 speed auto and stock exhaust brake are great, well worth the price of the new truck and if the emissions crap starts giving me trouble I'll pull it all off and run without it.

I weighed in a 26K lbs towing to KOH from Houston with 1500 miles on the truck and she loved every minute of it, the transmission alone makes the truck worthwhile.
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Old 04-20-2009, 10:02 AM   #5 (permalink)
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OK thanks for the info, as far as I know and have read in CA all light duty diesels are going to have to pass a visual smog check starting Jan. '10, so anything with a chip or programmer will need to be returned to stock and have the cat in place to pass. Anyone heard anything different? This is a tough decision because the prices are all pretty close between the 05s and 08s for what I'm looking for....



mondtster: what are DPFs and VGTs??

Thanks again, I can always count on the PBB!
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Old 04-20-2009, 10:29 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by WhiskeyTango View Post
OK thanks for the info, as far as I know and have read in CA all light duty diesels are going to have to pass a visual smog check starting Jan. '10, so anything with a chip or programmer will need to be returned to stock and have the cat in place to pass. Anyone heard anything different? This is a tough decision because the prices are all pretty close between the 05s and 08s for what I'm looking for....



mondtster: what are DPFs and VGTs??

Thanks again, I can always count on the PBB!
DPF = Diesel particulate filter
VGT = Variable Geometry Turbo (variable vane)
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Old 04-20-2009, 10:32 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Oh and from what I've read here and on the Cummins forum, CA diesel owners are in for a fight when it comes to smog because they want to test everything 97 or 98 and newer and it'll have to meet EPA standards.

I will say one thing about the 6.7L cummins, for every 1 person I talk to that have had trouble I find 6 or 7 that have had none. There's been a few ECU flashes that have come out which seem to fix most of the emissions issues, it doesn't give you back the power that they rob from you and the stock truck won't smoke to save it's life but it'll clear up the issues with the DPF. Most people like myself run the Exhaust brake all the time, it helps with soot buildup in the turbo.

Diesel here on PBB has a 6.7L that has or is giving him trouble but he uses it as a grocery getting and never gets it hot enough to go through a proper regen period.
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Old 04-20-2009, 10:38 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Yes your right. there will be a visual smog check. It will consist of ALL diesel trucks from 98 and up. Heres a link to let you know what will be expected. http://www.cumminsforum.com/forum/ca...ould-read.html

For my suggestion on the truck, try to get a bone stock 5.9. Heard about some problems on the 6.7's. That way you will have all of the factory patrs that you replace with aftermarket ones. Also heard that crusing at slow speeds, the 6speed auto will shift up and down alot.
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Old 04-20-2009, 10:49 AM   #9 (permalink)
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...I will say one thing about the 6.7L cummins, for every 1 person I talk to that have had trouble I find 6 or 7 that have had none....
Count me in as a 6.7 owner (07.5) with 31K miles and zero problems.
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Old 04-20-2009, 11:15 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Also heard that crusing at slow speeds, the 6speed auto will shift up and down alot.
Maybe so but I haven't noticed it, mine is as smooth as the CVT tranny in my wife's Altima even with 14K lbs behind it. The only time you even feel mine is when it's downshifting in tow/haul mode with the EB on which is just it doing it's job. I've talked to guys with 550HP+ hooked up to the new 6 speed auto and they're still holding just fine.
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Old 04-20-2009, 12:29 PM   #11 (permalink)
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....Also heard that crusing at slow speeds, the 6speed auto will shift up and down alot.
Actually it's the 5.9 and the 48RE that will do this. Cruising about 15-18 mph, it will have a hard time deciding between 2nd and 3rd. Mine did it... Dealer says it's normal - and its just the programming... I go that speed (continuously) almost never, so I never really gave it any thought. I just noticed it because we used to live about 1/2 mile down a gravel road and that was about as fast as you could comfortably go.
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Old 04-20-2009, 06:58 PM   #12 (permalink)
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My biggest complaint about my 6.7 is not being able to get consistant fuel mileage. One day you can drive 100 miles at 60mph and get 16mpg....the next day you can drive the same road at 60mph and get 13mpg....then the next day you can drive the same road at 80mph and get 16mpg....and then the next day drive the same road at 80mph and get 13mpg. Compared to the other CTDs I have owned the 6.7 is a pita if you are trying to figure out the best driving style for fuel mileage. My truck only has 26k on it and I have had everything related to the emissions replaced under warranty at least once and have gone about 12k trouble free. Do I want to get rid of the truck...no...if I had it to do over again would I get a 5.9.....tough call for me now that my truck is running properly. I do plan to have my DPF and EGR go MIA pretty soon if only for the fuel mileage benefits. I don't have anything to add for the automatic since I like shifting my own gears other than most like the 6spd auto.

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Old 04-20-2009, 07:41 PM   #13 (permalink)
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I bet your fuel mileage is all over the place because you're averaging regen cycles in with normal driving.
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Old 04-20-2009, 07:53 PM   #14 (permalink)
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Actually it's the 5.9 and the 48RE that will do this. Cruising about 15-18 mph, it will have a hard time deciding between 2nd and 3rd. Mine did it... Dealer says it's normal - and its just the programming... I go that speed (continuously) almost never, so I never really gave it any thought. I just noticed it because we used to live about 1/2 mile down a gravel road and that was about as fast as you could comfortably go.
As with any auto trans, if it's hunting and you want it to stay in one gear, manually select the lower of the 2 and it will stay there. Every now and again a person must do some things for themselves
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Old 04-20-2009, 08:10 PM   #15 (permalink)
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I bet your fuel mileage is all over the place because you're averaging regen cycles in with normal driving.
What I was getting at was in my older CTDs I could get in them and drive them to get good fuel mileage. In my 6.7 there is no relation to my driving style and my fuel mileage. It doesnt matter if I drive it like my grandmother or drive it like John Force there is no way to get consitant fuel mileage with the DPF. I was using the 100 mile thing as an example.
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Old 04-21-2009, 03:25 AM   #16 (permalink)
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What I was getting at was in my older CTDs I could get in them and drive them to get good fuel mileage. In my 6.7 there is no relation to my driving style and my fuel mileage. It doesnt matter if I drive it like my grandmother or drive it like John Force there is no way to get consitant fuel mileage with the DPF. I was using the 100 mile thing as an example.
From day 1, my 6.7 4x4 Dually has consistently achieved the exact same mileage under the same conditions as my 5.9 4x4 Dually did...

Highway speeds - 16.5-ish
around town - 14.5-ish
towing the toyhauler - 7.5 to about 10-ish (depending on wind)

<shrug>
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Old 04-21-2009, 04:01 AM   #17 (permalink)
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I have nothing bad to say about a 6.7 and would recomend it to anyone. I have had no Tranny hunting issus. Actually havent had any issues at all.

BTW Smarty ME goes on my truck in the morning. Cant wait to rip it up! Code free with everything deleted.

BTW in STOCK form the 6.7 puts down more power then any 5.9 from the factory.
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Old 04-21-2009, 04:27 AM   #18 (permalink)
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05-06 5.9
I'm just short of 200K on my 05 with only replacing a water pump and belt on the engine. I'm not including maintainance in that.
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Old 04-21-2009, 10:25 AM   #19 (permalink)
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08 6.7 auto here. DPF delete code free and edge with attitude.

16 + mpg in houston traffic.
18+ Hwy @70 mph

Note: I have a 4x4 normal 4 door. Stock wheels and tires and I do not haul around a bunch of extra crap. No tool box to fill up with 1000 lbs of stuff. Mileage is hand calculated using GPS numbers.
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Old 04-23-2009, 07:48 PM   #20 (permalink)
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Doing the same search for a new truck and had the same questions. Thanks for all the info!
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Old 05-08-2009, 03:47 PM   #21 (permalink)
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Update

So it's my 30th birthday, we have the family over, I am bbqing it up, the wife disappears, I am asked to help my bro in law unload some stuff from his car, I walk out and in the driveway pulls a brand new Dodge diesel mega cab with the wife driving and a huge red bow on top

I have the coolest wife ever.....

This truck has by far more stuff to distract you from driving than should be allowed. Drives great, tows even better.

So now I need to start tinkering with it. Will a leveling kit create any warranty issues? How about changing out the muffler, just the muffler, I am not going to mess with anything else down there until the warranty is up.

Any other minor mods?? I am not going to spend a grand on a programmer yet she's got enough power for me.....

Thanks again for all the advice, even though it really didn't matter in the long run
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