2010 HD Results; How We Scored It


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To determine the best overall heavy-duty pickups in the three categories we tested, we created a scoring system that measured the trucks in three areas. Each test was worth a maximum of 100 points.

The first component is subjective evaluations of important characteristics, and it accounts for 20 percent of the total score. It includes unloaded ride and handling, ride and handling with trailers, grade braking ability, fit and finish and overall value based on features and MSRP. The three authors all agreed on the scores.

The second component accounts for 55 percent of a truck’s rating. Points were awarded based on the trucks’ power and pulling capabilities during instrumented testing. For each test -- the fastest truck by time or the shortest to stop by distance – first place was awarded 100 points, and the second and third place trucks were assigned scores relative to how close they finished to the leader. For example, if the fastest truck through the quarter-mile finished in 15 seconds, and second place truck finished in 16 seconds, then the second-place truck received 93 points.

The third component is fuel economy, and it makes up 25 percent of the score. It’s based on measured fuel consumption when the trucks were unloaded and trailering. Like the power contests, the best-performing truck in each of the three groups was awarded 100 points and the second and third place trucks were given relative scores based on their efficiency.

2010 Heavy-Duty Shootout Best Overall Three-Quarter-Ton Gas

2010 Heavy-Duty Shootout Best Overall Three-Quarter-Ton Diesel

2010 Heavy-Duty Shootout Best Overall One-Ton Diesel

Thank You


We're immensely thankful to all the manufacturers involved for their support putting this event together, and especially GM for loaning us the trailers and allowing us access to the Milford Proving Grounds. We'd also like to thank our longtime partners from Ricardo Inc. who instrumented all the trucks and certified the data collected from the Milan and GM Proving Ground towing and brake tests.

Thanks also to Kent Sundling from MrTruck.com for once again teaming up with us on the Shootout. Kent is one of the most valuable and knowledgeable trailering and towing resources in the country. Thanks to Mark Williams for joining us as a tester and co-writer for the first time. Mark's help and input was invaluable putting this story together. The same goes for the staff from Cars.com. We couldn't have done this without their logistical support, input and creativity.

And, of course, we're very thankful to you, our readers. We do this for you.


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No surprise the F250 6.2 won best overall. Gas trucks are the future.

Gas trucks are not the future DIESELS are because oil will run out and then what is there for gas trucks to run on.
and this is coming from the guy that is mad about ford lost to THE DURAMAX face it dan ford (found off road dead) lost and who would win if you put the DURAMAX against fords 6.2L gaser.

Uhh, Duramax, do you know what diesel fuel is made from? It's a distillate of crude oil/natural gas just as gasoline is. If we run out of crude oil, then we're out of both diesel and gasoline.

It's a moot point though - we will never completely run out of petroleum, at least not in our lifetimes.

C'mon man, you're not doing anything to dispel the stereotypes regarding pick up truck owners here.

Why you Chevy guys always gotta say "found on/off road dead"? It was funny when I was 12...now, just lame. I'm no fan boy (I like almost anything with 2-4 wheels and an engine), but I've driven Ford all my life, and I can't remember one time where my Ford has ever left me for dead. I can probably ask my brothers, and they can tell me a couple of times their GM products have...and I'm sure there's Ford's out there that have too. But get off it already. Like to see you make 375,000 km on a GM without any repairs whatsoever (gaskets, trannies...more than once too I'm sure, I know mine did!) like I have in my boring old reliable Taurus. Sometimes you get lucky, sometimes you don't.

I for one am just impressed at how well they all did. Can't wait to get home where I can have the time to read the entire article.

Here's my take on this; If you're brand loyal, you're going to get a really good truck no matter what brand you're loyal to. If you're not brand loyal, then you have a lot of head scratching and research to do to decide which way to go. All NA trucks are worhty. I'm personally a Ford guy but there's not a mutt in the bunch tested here. I'd be happy with any of the 3/4 ton diesels.

@ DAN, |Diesel is future in trucks not gas, mark my words on this.

@Bill - well said.

When the Ford was put in 4x4...there were no more traction problems...then it won all the hill climbs. Another note is why would a guy nail it to a wheel hop...lean into the power and let the truck do what it was meant to do. Wheel hop comes from a lead foot Psycopath. In closing....this is the lame 6.7 not the 400/800 flashed unit. I think this test is over lololol.

gas trucks are and always will be the future.

I heard Dodge ran away with it in the manual transmission categories....

Are you "gas guys" on another planet?!

Seriously.. 1) For each of the the mfgrs when you go to a 250/2500 and higher category of truck over 75% of all trucks sold are DIESEL. Not gas.

2) For the smart guy "Dan", diesel fuel can, and is, made from a variety of sources. 100% synthetic, coal, vegetable matter, animals fats, natural gasses etc. Plus you get better mileage and better performance.

The only penalty these days is the cost. And that's as much the mfgrs being greedy as it is the extra cost to manufacture.

Seriously man.. get your facts at least CLOSE to correct.

first of all lets put a fifth wheel trailer on these trucks with 18000 pounds on,so gm cant claim they won a race fairly over some stupid wheel hop GAME. Second who starts a trailer up a 16 % grade from a complete stop. If i would do that with my 40 Foot stock trailer loaded i would better hope i have new electric brakes on the trailer or i would be going in the other direction in a hurry. And oh GM testing grounds. Whatever!!!!!!!!

@Jason : Most boat trailers are bumper hitch pull, even really big the ones. And there are some insanely steep (>/= 16%) boat launches around. It all seemed like a fair test to me, and probably the best I've seen anyone post online so far.

When was the last time you tried to hit 30mph by the time you got to the top of the boat ramp?

These are silly tests - I would like to see more realistic tests.

I have not read the entire article, but I would like to point out one issue with FORD Super Duty CREW CAB ONLY. I find this rather perplexing and I have contacted FORD directly on this. I am a family man, with two small children. Their safety is very important to me. I find it hard to belevie that FORD who prides themselves on safety, would not install the CHILD SAFTY LATCH system on the rear seat. (Yes they do have the upper tether, but not the base latch's) The Chevy and Dodge both have it. This may seem trivial to many but it is a deal braker for me. All things being equal there is no excuse from FORD to not have these simple steal latches installed on their seats. It is installed on the F-150 crew cabs. It is also offered on the extended cab Super duty. I have called FORD and spoke with them directly about this, there is no option to custom order a rear seat with the latch system as well. I also know that for vehicles over 8500lbs they are not required, by law (Simply this is the law of gross tonage, and the physics of objects in motion tend to stay in motion etc. DELTA V of two bodies). But again for FORD to hang their hat on safety along with quality they get a big zero as compared to Chevy and Dodge. My 2 cents on a $50 design issue on a $60K truck

Yeah, diesel and Gas are from the same source Dan, crude oil. And less diesel is burned for the same power output of a gasoline engine. With that being said I'm proud of all trucks competing well and doing the best in their own individual test and category. But I feel that electric will be the future. Electric motors have the most torque when they are turned on, a huge benefit for towing heavy loads. They decrease torque linearly with their speed. I believe it just takes time, just as our big dog diesels developed over time, so will electric.

I like the GM trucks the best personally. A huge benefit if your looking to buy is that Chevy's maintenance can be done under the hood, in your driveway. Fords require body off maintenance. Now, let me call up some UFC fighters so I have enough body power to lift the cab off my ford so I can change the 16 spark plugs on my 6.2 gas V-8 in my driveway.... (I don't think any engine/transmission maintenance will be done in the driveway to a 2011 Ford SD.)

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