2010 HD Best Overall Three-Quarter-Ton Diesel Truck (SRW)


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The best overall HD rig in the three-quarter-ton diesel category is the 2011 Chevrolet Silverado 2500HD. Though its interior isn’t up to par in quality and materials with the latest from Ford and Chrysler, the Chevy’s combination of the powerful Duramax diesel, all-new frame and suspension and excellent fuel economy put it ahead of the Ford and Ram trucks. It’s possible that if we’d had a Super Duty with the new 400/800 power ratings, it could have beaten the Chevy on performance but that wouldn’t have changed the way we feel about the Silverado’s ride and handling and steering characteristics, which we now think are the benchmarks in the segment, followed closely by the Ram.

Score Category Weights: Subjective 20% / Performance 55% / Fuel Economy 25%


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It couldn't be clearer to me, that GM will always be number 1, yes that's numero uno in Spanish. Way to cool, go GM and Chevy. Oh wait is that a FORD Girl I hear crying wolf, did they upgrade the computer software in the truck, lol.

This is a slam dunk win for GM. This is another spot where the Ford's job 2 diesel will probably make getting the power down even harder. Sounds like Ford needs to "upgrade" their traction control systems rather then try and beat GM in power.

Hmmm tough choices here. Tough, refined, new chassis with plain interior
Or new high tech tough engine with tough solid front axle and nice interior...? Both still seem very appealing to me.

I find it ironic that Fords biggest problem is the increased HP and TQ of its new diesel. Good thing they increased the power even more :)

Well, guys, it isn't any surprise that GM isn't up to the quality of Ford.

No surprise the F-250 has better fuel economy with a trailer.

It's no surprise that the Ford F-250 has better braking than GM.

Some might go for the truck that is 1/2 second faster at the track. But I would give up that 1/2 of a second for quality.

I am a diehard GM man at heart and think in real world day to day situations the results are correct but at the end of the day it all comes down to what you like and want they all are good trucks.

Glad that someone has finally given GM some love for upgrading the things that truck buyers will notice the most in real world usage.

I love when people throw around quality all the time, but hey whatever Mike Rowe says, right?

No surprise the CHEVY 2500 has better combined fuel economy, which is all that matters anyway.

It's no surprise that the CHEVY 2500 has better loaded braking than the F-250, and DENALI has better braking than the F-350.

I could buy a truck that is superior in almost every category, like the GM trucks, or buy the Ford, because it has a big cool chrome grill, and a fancy computer readout.

It's no Mike Rowe, it's what Mike Levine said. He make the point about the lack of quality in the GM compared to Ram and Ford.

Better loaded braking? The Chevy 2500 has better loaded braking by about 3 inches! 154.64 for vs. 154.94 Chevy Do you really think that matters? Ford beats Chevy by 4 feet without a load. Denali beats the Ford by 8 feet in the 1 tons but honestly how many people are going to buy a 1 ton dually Denali here?

Look at the actual figures. No truck was superior in almost every category except Dodge and Ram for quality.

Here's your loaded braking "victory":
Ford 154.94 ft
Chevy 154.64 ft
That is 3 inches.

Mark, the GM fanboys are funny. All they want is to read how they won. It was like a Superbowl victory. They don't care how, or in what areas. They're not even going to buy a truck, so pros and cons are irrelevant. It's the same group of people who were complaining last week how this site is too pro Ford.

As for me, I found this test very informative. Everything that is good in one area (like IFS for comfort and handling) has a trade off on other areas. I think I would prefer solid for off-road abuse. I have driven all three, and I knew this test would come down to a close call between Ford and GM. I think people still need to think about what they want more out of their truck. Use the shootout to help you find which one suits you. The ONLY reason I rule out the Dodge is because the fuel economy on the Cummins is crap! To be honest, I could live with a truck that may not be the fastest from 0-60

They are all great trucks, and all of them have something where they are not as good as the other 2.

wow mark.. Ford wins one braking test and they are best truck... Talk about grasping at straws....

I know it must be tough to see your beloved Ford diesels finish behind GM 2 years in a row, but sack up and take it like a man...

you Ford girls are great... keep the excuses coming, they are hilarious..

GM has the better diesel, better transmission, better ride, better handling... but your right, Ford won a brake test so they are better....

Jake, are you even going to buy one? Or is this like a Superbowl victory to you?

I have a 01' 2500 cummins. I love my truck it fits me and who i am. I will always stick with cummins because of its simplicity and heritage.

All these numbers are so close to each other that it really boils down to what your loyal to.

So what you can haul your trailer 1mph faster than me...
So what you can brake shorter than me by 3"
So what you make 10 more hp than me...

All moot points when you really look at it. Now it would be something if one truck totally blew the doors off of everything like braking 50ft shorter or pulling a sled up 16% grade 30mph faster and 20 seconds less time...

Dodge and cummins are a great combo for me and i am happy.

Wow Ram came very close to the new GM and Ford with 3 year old technology. i love the way Ram braking and handling loaded and unloaded beat the new Ford. Congrats to GM #1 HD diesel truck.

Agreed Deezl, a lot of the differences are minute and only relevant for a conversation at the dinner table, though didn't one of the tests show a 5mpg deficit on the Dodge? That would be my only complaint. And the trailer sway control would be nice to have. That new Duramax is savagely fast! I'm interested to see how the Job 2 PowerStroke goes in acceleration.

@ Alex - I agree. Take the information and apply it to one's own wants and needs.
The excuses are entertaining.
Imagine the gloating and BS flowing once the Bobsie twins and their multiple personalities start to post about the GM win.

I've been a GM person all my life, but when I bought my first Ford truck it kicks the competitions butt! It is definitely a work truck, quality and innovation is exceptional. GM has to copy the competition to claim itself worthy, what's up with their own ideas/innovation? GM... is more like Government Motors. Must have used the bankrupcy money to market themselves again.

Come on people buy F'n American, not this ISUZU (Susie Q) motor!

This cheesy "shoot out" (test) is nothing compared to real world applications. I guarantee that this new diesel ford pick up with the 400 hp/ 800 #torque is beyond GM's capabilities (power, torque, esp. quality). Ford had to wait to see what GM puts out on the market and then flipped the switch, it's all about strategy to keep an edge. Notice Dodge is not mentioned in my comment. GO FORD, it will forever reign SUPREMECY!!

Good test but nothing in any of this is going to substantially change anyone's mind about which truck they plan to buy. The numbers are way to close. In fact when a large problem in the test is that 1 ton duallys with trailers cannot keep traction (read that sentence over and over until it sinks in) its time to start looking at these vehicle differently and abandon the power wars. For me fit finish and quality of ride are going to rule out in favor of empirical track data as none of these vehicle really suffered in any category other than subjective feel and minuscule handling operations. The traction control was a big letdown on the ford and should be upgraded in the future. I know they have better available. But at least they had it. (looking at you Dodge). GM needs to learn how to make a GD interior The Denali is nice but far from amazing.

Well Im a Ford guy and I still will always like Ford more. Im not goanna get all bent out of shape since I cant afford to buy any of these trucks. I dont care who won I wont be getting any of these any time soon.

To "FORD Rules"

I really find your comment about the Duramax being an Izuzu product, but the simple fact of the matter is that only the raw block and crank come from Japan, all the rest is made by DMAX corp. right in the good old USA, infact the new LML is almost entirely re-engineered from the original LB7, only sharing its displacement and name, Izuzu has not been involved in the duramax's development since the LLY, approximately 5-6 years.....

As for the new 6.7L powerstroke being American made... i hardly agree, its MEXICAN made in Chihuahua MEXICO, but if you would rather support mexican workers that get paid a fraction of the american workers do thats entirely your prerogative

GM also makes some trucks in Mexico, same with Ram - trucks made in Mexico.

I think if the Ford had the same gear, it would have been as good as the GM. Not trying to cry foul, but it would have been a better match.

@Glyn: Ford was **aware for weeks** what GM and Ram were bringing to the Shootout - and vice versa. It was their choice to supply the trucks they did knowing the rear axle ratios of the competitors.

The 6.2 F-250 is only available with a 3.73 or 4.30 rear axle, while the GM and Ram pickups came with a 4.10.

Yeah this was a very fair game. Congrats to GM! Maybe when Ford gets a new chassis, we will see the potential of the 6.7. And when Chevy gets a new engine the competion will be even more intense!

I can't believe that they don't do a payload comparison with these trucks. I can't argue with anything that they have said here, but I've found that SRW chevs of the past are dangerously unstable when compared with fords when hauling loads with a high center of gravity ( think welding rigs or toolbox canopies). Those of us who use these for work in the real world every day don't make decisions based solely on dragstrip numbers.

Jake I disagree. Although it is nit picking what good is all that power and torque if you can't slow it down?????

I'm sure some of you know that i am a ford guy, but congrats to chevy. I probably won't read any of the chevy dudes comments because i will probably take back what i said... lol idk why ford didn't tune their trucks before though, not saying that it'll be an automatic win, but it definitely would have helped. Go FORD still love ya! lol

Not sure that this review is really a help at all to the "Normal" consumer... They neglected everything that matters! If you are towing a 5er 3k miles accross the country, yes you want to be sure that your truck is capable of the task, but you are also going to spend lots of time sitting in the cabin of said truck. If it lacks several of the features, fit and finish, or comfort of another manufacturer are you going to forego these things for the satisfaction of knowing your truck is slightly faster in the 1/4 mile? I love road trips, and I don't mind putting 30k miles a year on a vehicle... But if I am going to; I want to make sure that it is the quietest available, that it gives me all the connectivity options available, and that its fit and finish are second to none. Really in a way this test is void for those of us that are looking to travel in comfort as we traverse our corner of the world. The journalists here completely negated the needs of the "every day joe", you can't compare these trucks and not give the consumer the low down on the rest of the package... It's like only telling half the joke, if you leave out the punch-line no one is going to get it.

@Brandon Budge We touch upon most of the items you mention in pages 2-4 except cabin decibel levels, which our friends from Diesel Power Magazine measured and will publish in their Sept. issue.

For further reading about these items, I suggest you also see our first drive reviews:





I don't disagree, braking is very important and if you read the test it seems like GM understands this perfectly... I was just responding to Marks post who said the Ford was the better truck because it won one of the many braking tests.... Which IMO isn't a big enough deal to declare a truck the winner.

@Jonathan, if Ford released power figures of 370HP/690 lb-ft, Chevy would have done 380/700. If Ford did 410/820, Chevy would have done 420/840. They are not trying to give you the highest potential of the engine, they just want to be best in class. Ford has to make sure there is plenty left in the engine for when Chevy brings out the all new Duramax engine. Who knows what power and torque figures will be looking like then! A lot more than any of us needs, that's for sure!

all of the trucks did extremly well. they all have good points and bad points but as far as saying the ford has better fit and finish i dont think so i have driven in all 3 and i dont see that much diff as far as power gm does not follow ford it has always been the other way around ford has never made alot of power go back to the drag race days it was always between chev and dodge nothing about ford.and to all of the ford guys wait a couple of years on your new ford and let me know what its worth they have no resale value.anyway all 3 trucks have been built well and i like the style of all three.

Well here is how I see it, I sell Chevy so it has to be the best, lol. The Ford and Chevy are moving in the right direction, where the Dodge is still trying to turn on the lights in the engine department. Yes it Cummins name once was magical but time to move on, better mileage, better emissions and quiter out of the V-block motors.

Like them all for something, love the Chevy cause it pays the bills!!!

ford makes the best trucks and the sales numbers prove it they out sold chevy ever year for 32 years theres more ford trucks on job sites.. most citys and suburbs fleets are fords because there built better and safer. and last longer. gm been rollin out crap for years and are now forced to build a better truck and there still coke cans on wheels.. they had american people fooled for years just put it out there and they will buy it where did that get them.. a new name goverment motors! built ford tough its not just an ad slogan

wow maybe ford did use the biggest bolt.or maybe they forget to add some...ford tough...on paper..

since 2001 ford has been second to the duramax. no excuses, i've owned 2. buy what u want, but in real world like you throw around who is going to buy a 50 or 60 thousand dollar truck and take it off road to the point of breaking? this is the first time since the creation of the duramax that ford is even close to performance. new vs. legacy, when the new d'max arrives it will be no comparrison again.

i have to give it to GM for there powertrains they are bullit proof but the rest of the truck falls apart when you work it! you might beat a Ford to the next stop light but you won't beat it on the job site !

I do not understand what pickuptruck.com has against GM's interiors. I have sat in all three and I like GM's better. I do not like the boxy look the Ford and Dodge have. It seems to make the buttons seem further away. Dodge does have the better cloth but the seats are not as comfortable as GM's. Don't get me started on Fords cardboard seats. after 20 min you butt goes numb. Look at the fit an finish on the out side. Both Ford and Dodge use gas struts to hold their hoods up and it is flimsy. Not to mention Fords wiring is exposed. If you need to work on the Ford, which you will, it is a pain to get to the block.

I saw worry about exterior fit and finish, more than interior and you will see where Ford cut corners

The review was great, and you did mention the interiors on the trucks... But it didn't come into play for the results, it was a mute point in the end. I am glad that someone put them to the "work" test, but there isn't a magazine out there that has included all aspects into one review. It would be great to see a complete work up of towing, driving, fuel milieage, fit and finish, comfort, towing, off road, tech levels of available features and drive trains, and anything else that may be applicable to the consumer. Is there any chance that you and your crew will revisit this topic in full. I believe of all the journalists out there you are the best choice for this test! You seem to really love what you do! I hope that we can get others, chevy lovers, ford lovers, dodge lovers and general truck lovers to petition for another shoot out! Thanks!

All good.

These trucks are in reality very close in all tested areas, but at $8000 less, the Dodge is hard to pass by, Does anyone else wonder why Ford and GM are so expensive?


No, PUTC will never do that. Been here too long to notice that. Nice try though!

All the haters need not comment. I've owned an independent auto repair shop for almost 30 years and have seen just about everyting the engineers have thrown at us. Over those years spent in the trenches of reapair, ALL 3 automakers have turned out some fine trucks and some real crap! This whole article's point is just to prove that they are all fine trucks and it really boils down to preference. It's that simple. In the end though, I earn my money the hard way and want the most for it. I bought the new Chevy.

Was I the only one to notice the Odometer readings . 3/4 ton Diesel G. M. 2556 , Ford 9133 , Ram 12934 . Ford and Ram had considerably more brake in time ?

I noticed on some of the test runs a few GM trucks jumped the gun on the FORD. This test is useless to me now.

@Frank: As we wrote in the introduction, even though you'll see trucks racing side-by-side, the trucks were instrumented and timed individually. The 'drag races' had zero impact on acceleration results.

Mike seems like all the little mistakes you made always favor the gm products, graphs, charts, ect and I like the way the GMC truck sits on the start line then drives off before the test begins nice work for gm Mike cant get more obvious then that

@Roger: Not sure what mistakes you're referring to but if they were mistakes, they've been acknowledged and corrected.

You probably missed my comment directly above yours. The one that says the drag races in the videos had ZERO IMPACT on acceleration results because Ricardo (neutral 3rd party) instrumented one truck at a time.

At least ford can biuld there on diesel why cant chevy and dodge?

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