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-   -   What would be your tow vehicle of choice? (http://www.wakeworld.com/forum/showthread.php?t=778583)

04-16-2010 7:31 AM

What would be your tow vehicle of choice?
Im going truck shopping this weekend!
What would be your truck of choice and why? ( 2011 models excluded )
Price range between 10k - 25k
New or Used
It will be lifted if not already lifted
Decent gas mileage

Goals :
Be able to pull my future boat ;)
Not crap out ( dependable / long living / No or Low problems )
Dosnt have to be top of line but would perfer mid 2000's or newer
Would perfer a turbo diesel ( just because they live forever )
Which company has the best? I heard Chevy is pretty top notch

What kind of tow vehicle do you have and what are the pros and cons of it?

wakereviews 04-16-2010 7:47 AM

Love my Armada. Definitely in your price range. Tows amazing. negative is gas mileage.

beretta5spd 04-16-2010 7:51 AM

trailblazer ss:

like this one. although lifting it probably isn't a good call


edited for link

04-16-2010 7:51 AM


Originally Posted by wakereviews (Post 1574083)
Love my Armada. Definitely in your price range. Tows amazing. negative is gas mileage.

I dont know if im tooooo fond of the Armada its a nice looking suv but I think my replacement would probably a ford excursion if I did that , I really like the thought a of a bed though

moon 04-16-2010 7:54 AM

If you're going with diesel I would be cautious of the powerstroke 6.0. You can find threads on here about egr problems and head gaskets (personal experience with egr). I actually just traded my powerstroke 6.0 for an 06 dodge mega cab 2500 with the 5.9 cummins. So far so good, but I haven't had the chance to tow with it yet. I don't know much about chevy d-max, so I can't really make a comment about them. I would say that each brand probably has their own issues, but the earlier 2000's have less emissions crap which is a good thing for engine life. Before dropping a dime on any of them, research the heck out of them. Be aware of the issues that each of them can possible have, and if you do get one it's probably a good idea to pick up an extended warranty just to cover your ass cause they can become pretty expensive.


04-16-2010 7:54 AM


Originally Posted by beretta5spd (Post 1574089)
trailblazer ss:

like this one. although lifting it probably isn't a good call


edited for link

I do like the trailblazer SS's , Fast! ( corvette engine muhahaha ;) ) ( my friend has the silverado SS ) but I dont think it would be a tow vehicle I would want to use, plus I dont know if you actually can lift them since they are lowered, atleast for the silverado SS he cant so im assuming its the same thing with the trailblazer, again like the thought of a bed

adam4x4 04-16-2010 8:10 AM

If you can find on F 250 or F 350 with the 7.3 2003 or older had 2 6.0 ford bought them both back. GMC or Chevy r a nice choice to, but the can have front end problems when lifted high. i do not k now how high u want to lift yours. my F 350 has 9" with 37" tires on it

jarrod 04-16-2010 8:21 AM

I'm with adam. A turbo diesel would be in my ultimate tow vehicle. Big advantage in both power and efficiency over gas motors.

sidekicknicholas 04-16-2010 8:28 AM

Beset I've pulled with:
My friends 02'(?) F-250 V10 -- couldn't even tell the boat was there -- then it blew out a spark plug and cost $1500 to fix

My dad's old (2004) Chevy Silv 2500 w/ Duramax -- it was a best, got much better gas milage than the V10

hatepain 04-16-2010 9:17 AM

02 F250/350 7.3 TD are awesome trucks. If you can find and 03 in the 7.3 thats even better, 06 and 07 6.0's ar pretty damn solid too. If gas I'd go with a 04 or newer F150 I've towed a ton with these and they do an excellent job. Those are my preferences but I also sell Ford so I'm biased. I have sold all of the major 3 (US) and they all make nice trucks and having been trained on all three I feel Ford makes the best truck front to back. The Duramax and Allison combo is great too as is the Cummins, Dodges 48RE tranny is pretty good. My concern with Dodge would be getting parts down the road depending on what happens with them. The Ram line is up for sale and after next year Dodge likely will not have a diesel for 2012 for non commercial trucks. They couldn't afford to build a new deisel to keep up with EPA emmissions but for 2011 they are allowed to run out there current diesel one more year thanks to government credits.

04-16-2010 9:20 AM

Hate N Pain do you have a source explaning whats happening to Dodge?

petrey10 04-16-2010 9:24 AM

how big is your boat going to be?? I would say that a F250/350 would be WAY overkill for towing your dream boat. If it were me I would search for a V6 turbo diesel so when you aren't towing you are still getting great mileage for a truck that can outpull almost all gas engines. I think GMC Sierra has one with the allison tranny. Best combo in my honest opinion and is all we use on our family farm (farms 5300 acres). If you are worried about mileage and durability I would not "supe" it up at all. Lifts, bigger tires, etc... lessen gas mileage and are expensive. So if you are worried about costs I would stay stock with some good 6ply tires in your stock dimensions. If price is your main concern then you could find a diesel with 70-80,000 miles on it and still have 200,000 miles left in the engine EASILY!

hope this helps...

talltigeguy 04-16-2010 9:25 AM

How big a boat are you planning on getting? Diesel is way overkill for most 21 foot boats. But if you are getting a 24 footer, a diesel might be a good thing.

I have an 05 Excursion with the 6.0. Have had some mild problems, but there is NOTHING else on this planet that seats 8 people and has a diesel. So I am keeping it until it dies, unless something else is finally manufactured, or I step down from a 24 ft boat. I have 115K miles on it now.

04-16-2010 9:29 AM

My future boat will probably be 21 or 22ft to be honest, lakes in colorado have restrictions on boat sizes and you can get away with any of them with those two sizes, as far as gas vs diesel the only reason I would pick diesel over gas is because I just heard they can last forever and are very durable and like I said im not TO worried about gas mileage because I will lift my truck and get bigger tires thats the first thing im going to do to it and I know it can decrease gas mileage but just as long as im not getting like 5mpg I can withstand it :)

patrick232 04-16-2010 9:35 AM

Hate I think I have a clue about the future of Dodge, if the bird told me the truth. We show know after the third qtr for sure. They need engines and a trucking company needs a truck to put their engine in.

petrey10 04-16-2010 9:36 AM

at 21 or 22 ft in colorado going up and down mountains.... i would say you would love a diesel over gas as long as you got a place to fill up that isn't out of the way cause some gas stations don't have diesel... me being in farming area just about all have it. Excursion would be nice but may suck up gas I don't know never had one or ridden in one or knew someone that would need one.

petrey10 04-16-2010 9:37 AM

another big factor is what gearing the vehicle will be... higher the number the lower your MPG will be

wake26 04-16-2010 10:01 AM

I tow a 22' boat with a 99 dodge with the cummins in it and I absolutly love it I can get 20mpg on the highway empty and 14 while towing. I have towed the same boat with a dodge half ton and a ford f150 both towed ok till you hit any kind of a hill then they were both pigs (we have alot of hills in Colorado) so to me it is a nobrainer get a diesel either dodge with the cummins or a ford with the 7.3.

wake_upppp 04-16-2010 10:18 AM

Tow with an 03 Cummins here and love it. Its going to be around for a long time.:D

99_slaunch 04-16-2010 10:18 AM

I have heard about problems from the Fords, Chevy and Dodge. That being said I had an 02 Chevy D-max with no issues. I traded it in on an 08 Dodge cummins and love it. I have no regrets. Chevy interior is more comortable than Dodge. I wanted a straight axle front end with a 4x4 though. Get on the diesel forums and do your home work. You will see people have had problems from all of them. I personally think it's all about how you take care of them and drive them.

olskooltige 04-16-2010 10:18 AM

2006 Chevy or GMC Duramax: Allison, LBZ engine, easily removable EGR, and all the torque you will ever need.

hatepain 04-16-2010 10:38 AM

My source is just industy reports. Apparently Fiat is looking to package Jeep (cash winner) with the Ram line to entice potential buyers. They are also selling the Viper line, imagine that! You may note that Dodge is not tagged in the new commercials for the Ram. Incidentally just becuase I sell Fords doesn't mean I want to see Ram go away. I don't think thats good for anybody. Its just than when the shizz hit the fan and Dodge was realing big time we had a hell of a time getting parts to make our trade ins ready for the lot.

V6 TD? In what? I've never heard of this before, other than dreams and speculation.

ponyh8r 04-16-2010 11:34 AM

You mentioned lifting the truck after you get it. I will say that NOTHING looks as good as a lifted superduty IMO. They just look so legit lifted for some reason. I have an 06' w/ 75K miles and have had exactly zero issues with it. It has a 6" lift and 35's and still tows my x-star without an issue. I have heard that many people have had issues w/ these motors, but i personally have not. I think in your price range, an 02-03 would be the best bet. The 7.3 is great. My buddy has one that has never seen the shop. He also has all the new exterior body parts so it looks just like a newer one.

The only 6 cylinder TDs i know of are in high end foreign German thingys....VW has one available in the Toureg right?

guido 04-16-2010 12:37 PM

'06 6.0 PSD here.... Nothing but good things to report. The truck is a beast. I drove it off the lot at the end of '06 and it's never been back to the dealer since. It's got just under 60k miles on it now. Service is easy if you're somewhat mechanically inclined. Keep the oil fresh and the fuel filters changed and it'll go a long time.

There were a ton of reports about the 6.0's having issues, but I know 3 guys with them and none ofthem have had any issues. That said... maybe we're all just lucky.

There is nothing that tows or goes up mountains like a Diesel. They just lope along like nothing is going on. I love blowing by cars on the way up the passes. It doesn't even shift down. Just builds boost and goes.

wakeboardertj 04-16-2010 12:54 PM

I always preferred towing with my dodge 1500 hemi but that was because it was more easy to maneuver than taking my dads giant lifted f350. Now that I sold my dodge though its between my new jeep grand cherokee or borrowing my dads f350. The f350 hands down is the best truck I've towed with, over the various gmc's my buddies have let me tow with. It feels like the boat isn't even there. Once you try out a turbo diesel and experience the kind of towing capabilities it has you'll never want to go back.

tinytdubb 04-16-2010 2:11 PM

I recently sold my 05 Ram Diesel with 59k miles clean as a whistle for 24 so they are in your price range. Best vehicle I've ever owned. Great fuel mileage and could tow a house.

petrey10 04-16-2010 2:30 PM

sorry I meant to take the turbo out.... jsut got to typing and stopped thinking

cjh1669 04-16-2010 2:45 PM


Originally Posted by wake26 (Post 1574145)
I tow a 22' boat with a 99 dodge with the cummins in it and I absolutly love it I can get 20mpg on the highway empty and 14 while towing. I have towed the same boat with a dodge half ton and a ford f150 both towed ok till you hit any kind of a hill then they were both pigs (we have alot of hills in Colorado) so to me it is a nobrainer get a diesel either dodge with the cummins or a ford with the 7.3.

yeah if you plan on going anywhere in this state and towing you need a diesel.

Wow 20 empty, my 2001 gets between 16-17 empty and 14 towing.

JohnnyDefacto 04-16-2010 3:19 PM

I cant pick the truck for you, but here is mine.

05 dodge 2500 4x4 with the 5.9L cummins diesel. quad cab


not a true quad cab, so it will fit in a standard garage if you choose.
great brakes, best I have ever experienced
21.5 mpg combined average streets and highway (highway speed 65-70 always) highways %70- streets %30
15 mp towing approx 7000 lbs (55-60 mph)
stock ride height is on the high side compared to chevy, similar to ford. My friend with the same truck put A 2" level kit in front for $150 and it will fit atleast 33" tires and looks good.
I left it stock because I tow and when I put the trailer on it, it levels out.
easy to maintain, oil changes, filter changes, trans fluid and filter changes easy.
120K miles on it. made it 88K miles on stock tires and front brake pads. also had to change the water pump ($80) at 100k miles. Have had to have the transmission bands adjusted twice. once at 40k and once again at 110K. (first one was covered by warranty, second one was qouted at $780 at dodge, or about $400 at a local trans shop)
motor noise less than same year fords, little louder than same year duramax
5.9L cummins is a inline 6 cyclinder, less moving parts. the truck will fall apart around the motor.
dash and interior are very simple, it is definately a "truck"

not a true quad cab so big adults in the back for long distances suck.
2wd version looks goofy because the front end is so low.
transmission. 4 speed auto is the weak link in this truck in my opinion. had the bands adjusted twice, at low loads or hills it would be "searching" between 2nd and 3rd for about 5 seconds. wish it had an allison trans. I think that '07 and newer have the new 5 speed trans that is supposed to be way better. however I think its out of your price range.
6 speed manual is the way to go, its just hard to find, and who wants to shift?
every oil change you must/should grease the u-joint on the front drive shaft. you need a grease gun and a $10 adapter, there is no zyrk fitting, just a concave cone that you must find to grease the joint. pain in the but to find it sometimes.
the dash and interior are very simple- no frills. Not even close to how comfortable the chevy's are.

If i had to buy it again, I would absolutely buy the same truck.

motogod77 04-16-2010 5:35 PM

1 Attachment(s)
Another 7.3 PSD vote - the only weak link is the transmission and if they're built right they're pretty bullet proof.

ethan31 04-16-2010 7:21 PM

04'-06' Chev 2500HD

jonyb 04-16-2010 11:42 PM

Chevy 6.0L would be my last choice. I've owned one, they're hogs with no torque. I'd lose 20mph going up slight inclines with a 6,000# boat.

ajholt7 04-17-2010 1:20 AM

I use a 2003 F250 6.0. Pulls awesome. I know there are complaints about the 6.0 but, I am not convinced it is as bad as everyone says. I know several people with them and no problems. Just look around at how many of them you see driving down the road. I would not rule out a 6.0. Just make sure it is well maintained and doesn't or hasn't had a programer. They have plenty of power without it.

919chad480 04-17-2010 5:23 AM

2007 f250 6.0l turbo. i work for a ford dealer and they are great truck despite what every one says

brycejb328 04-17-2010 6:37 AM

No complaints to speak of with my 2001 CTD, if you go cummins... just budget in upgrading the lift pump right off the bat and install a lift pump gage. just my personal preferrence.

nvsairwarrior 04-19-2010 9:04 PM

Not sure you would consider an Excursion 7.3 Turbo Diesel but I've got one with only 72K miles on it with tons of extras that is on the market....seats 7 in style.

MattieK27 04-19-2010 9:26 PM

You guys are just towing wakeboarding boats, right? ;)

Seriously though, with all the big truck love in this thread, I would have thought you guys were trying to tow 38' go fast boats. Do most of you guys have full size trucks to do your towing? My borrowed Grand Cherokee is going to look dinky at the ramps when I finally get a boat...

nvsairwarrior 04-19-2010 10:14 PM

1 Attachment(s)
We do what we can with with we think we need. Ok this is a 40 footer but my neighbor had (wanted) to get a new truck for his new boat. Being all Carbon and not fiber glass it weighs less (I'm told) then a 36 footer. However the difference may be made up by the elaborate trailer.

jonyb 04-20-2010 8:57 PM

Matt, my wakeboard boat weighs just as much as my 25' Baja did. The only trucks that towed worth a crap were diesel's. Sure, you can get by with something smaller, but I won't take that risk.

val_cal 04-20-2010 10:11 PM

I tow with a gmc with a duramax and a 10" lift no problems and it gets great mileage. I used to have a h2 and it towed like crap


trace 04-21-2010 7:27 AM

Don't lift it if you care about fuel economy, towing, longevity, resale, and reliability. Lifts are all form and no function IMO.

I have owned a couple diesels in the past when I had a need to tow things much larger than a wakeboat, but I'm totally fine with my 1/2 ton Z71 for towing my boat. Although if I lived near mountains, I would probably have a diesel.

Also, of all the trucks I've owned, the diesels required the most maintenance. I've never had a 1/2 ton that wasn't extremely reliable.

Matt 04-21-2010 7:36 AM

2 Attachment(s)
For my Supra I pull with a 09 Duramax or a 2010 Denali either one does just fine...

petrey10 04-21-2010 7:48 AM

"Don't lift it if you care about fuel economy, towing, longevity, resale, and reliability. Lifts are all form and no function IMO. "


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