2012 Diesel Truck Buyer's Guide

Ford, GM, & Dodge Heavy Duty Trucks for 2012

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

2012 GM/Chevrolet HD

  2012 GMC Sierra HD

Engine:

6.6L Duramax LML Turbo Diesel V8

Transmission:

Allison 1000 6 speed automatic

Horsepower:

397 hp @ 3,000 rpm

Torque:

765 lb-ft @ 1,600 rpm

Towing (max):

• 23,000 lbs 5th wheel
• 18,000 lbs bumper pull

Payload (max):

5,775 lbs

Base Price:

Approx. $36,190 with diesel option and standard equipment (3/4 ton)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

For the 2011 and 2012 model years, GM has made it quite clear that it is looking to attract consumers who need a heavy hauler. The GMC and Chevrolet HD pickups have beat out the Ram and Super Duty in most categories of independent tow tests. GM is still offering the 6.6L Duramax, which was introduced in 2001, while Ford has switched powertrains 3 times and Dodge twice during the same period. While the new Duramax has undergone major changes in recent years, including the adoption of required emissions equipment, the fact that the 6.6L is still available has become a major marketing point for General Motors. Also still in service, the 6 speed Allison 1000 transmission, which seems to have undergone additional refinement to support the engine's latest attitude adjustment.

 

 

2012 Ford Super Duty

  2012 Ford Super Duty

Engine:

6.7L Power Stroke Turbo Diesel V8

Transmission:

TorqShift 6 speed automatic

Horsepower:

400 hp @ 2,800 rpm

Torque:

800 lb-ft @ 1,600 rpm

Towing (max):

• 24,500 5th wheel
• 17,500 bumper pull

Payload (max):

7,110 lbs

Base Price:

$36,900 with diesel option and standard equipment (3/4 ton)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Despite increased competition from GM and Dodge, the Ford Super Duty remains the frontrunner of the light duty diesel market, outselling the Ram and Sierra/Silverado HD by a wide margin. Ford's new 6.7L Power Stroke has already spawned a cult following, and there have been no major reoccuring problems to report. For those who need a serious workhorse, Ford continues to sell the F-450, with class leading towing and payload capabilities. Independent testing proved that the Ford Super Duty isn't the quickest up a grade, but it did manage to excell in fuel economy tests while weighted down. Ford's engineers have always designed their transmissions around the engine's torque curve for maximum tow efficiency and moving power, not dragstrip performance. It looks as though Ford is sticking to their roots, and it seems to paying off well. Additionally, Ford is merging into the luxury segment by offering the Super Duty with a variety of creature comforts that were unavailable in years past. Did we mention the Super Duty continues to lead the market in overall customer satisfaction?

 

2012 Ram HD

  2012 Ram 2500

Engine:

6.7L Cummins Turbo Diesel Inline 6

Transmission:

• 68RFE 6 speed automatic
• G56 6 speed manual

Horsepower:

350 hp @ 3,013 rpm

Torque:

• 800 lb-ft @ 1,600 rpm w/ automatic transmission
• 610 lb-ft @ 1,500 rpm w/ manual transmission

Towing (max):

22,750 lbs 5th wheel

Payload (max):

5,181 lbs

Base Price:

$35,625 with diesel option, manual transmission, and standard equipment (3/4 ton)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The new high output Cummins beats GM and matches Ford in torque. However, independent testing has shown that the diesel powered Ram falls short of its competitors in overall performance and fuel economy. The 6.7L Cummins does not require the use of urea injection in order to meet emissions, unlike the Power Stroke and Duramax. While this eliminates the expense and hassle of keeping the DEF tank full, it restricts the Ram from achieving the fuel economy figures that Super Duty and Silverado owner's are reporting. The Ram is the only truck currently available with a manual transmission, but owner's will have to sacrifice 190 lb-ft of torque to shift their own gears. The 68FRE automatic seems much less refined than the Allison or TorqShift, which seem to work harmoniously with the engine to enhance drivebility. The Ram receive high remarks in regards to interior space and the aesthetic appeal of their interior packages. It seems the 2012 Ram has all the right parts, but is in need of refinement to match the performance and appeal of their competitors.

 

2012 3/4 Ton Diesel Comparison

  2012 Ford F-250 2012 GMC Sierra 2500HD 2012 Ram 2500
  2012 Ford F-250
Crew Cab 4x4
2012 GMC Sierra 2500HD Crew Cab 4x4 2012 Ram 2500
Crew Cab 4x4 (auto)

Horsepower:

400 @ 2,800 rpm

397 @ 3,000 rpm

350 @ 3,013 rpm

Torque:

800 lb-ft @ 1,600 rpm

765 lb-ft @ 1,600 rpm

800 lb-ft @ 1,600 rpm

Conventional Tow:

14,000 lbs

13,000 lbs

12,000 lbs

5th Wheel Tow:

15,200 lbs

15,800 lbs

12,650 lbs

Payload:

3,290 lbs

2,706 lbs

2,390 lbs

*All trucks compared are crew cab, short bed, 4x4 models with 3.73/3.55 axle ratios and automatic transmission. Payload & tow capacities may vary with alternative configurations.

 

2012 1-Ton Diesel Comparison

  2012 Ford F-350 2012 GMC 3500HD 2012 Ram 3500

 

2012 Ford F-350
DRW Crew Cab 4x4

2012 GMC Sierra 3500HD DRW Crew Cab 4x4

2012 Ram 3500
DRW Crew Cab 4x4 (auto)

Horsepower:

400 @ 2,800 rpm

397 @ 3,000 rpm

350 @ 3,013 rpm

Torque:

800 lb-ft @ 1,600 rpm

765 lb-ft @ 1,600 rpm

800 lb-ft @ 1,600 rpm

Conventional Tow:

17,500 lbs

18,000 lbs

12,000 lbs

5th Wheel Tow:

21,500 lbs

22,400 lbs

16,700 lbs

Payload:

5,990 lbs

5,133 lbs

4,500 lbs

*All trucks compared are crew cab, long bed, 4x4, dual rear wheel (DRW) models with 3.73/3.55 axle ratios and automatic transmission. Payload & tow capacities may vary with alternative configurations.

 

 

All specifications direct from manufacturer records. The commentary featured in this article may contain the author/editor's opinions and interpretation of data provided by independent testing.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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