If you’re in the market for a pre-owned truck and have been looking for used trucks for sale near Odessa and are leaning toward a full-sized pickup or SUV for hauling or towing, you’re probably considering a diesel-powered truck. That’s an excellent idea. Diesel engines are celebrated for their remarkable durability and can effortlessly sustain extensive mileage, rendering them a beneficial long-term investment. Additionally, diesel engines typically have more torque, making them better for towing and other heavy-duty roles.
They may be especially good deals when bought used since a diesel with 50,000 or even 100,000 miles could easily give you a couple of hundred thousand miles of reliable use. Diesel engines are extra durable for a number of reasons, including the fact that they have fewer parts than gasoline-powered engines, they’re built to handle the high compression of their ignition cycles, and diesel fuel lubricates the engine as it runs.
Diesel engines are also generally more fuel-efficient than gas engines due to the higher energy content of diesel fuel since diesel fuel packs more energy in every gallon compared to gasoline. This higher efficiency is particularly notable for vehicles traveling long distances on highways. Even though the cost of diesel fuel can be higher at times, the greater fuel efficiency of diesel engines can result in overall savings over the vehicle's life, especially for those who drive many highway miles.
So, let’s take a look at your options as a diesel truck shopper. Since diesel trucks last a long time, you might find diesel trucks from thirty years ago or more. But to keep our overview within the range that you’re likely to find on used vehicle lots, we’ll go back roughly two or three generations for each model.
The Ford F-150 was available with a Power Stroke 3.0-liter V6 diesel engine for a limited time between 2018 and 2021. The Power Stroke diesel engine was designed to optimize combustion and includes a variable-geometry turbocharger to enhance power and torque. The F-150 with the Power Stroke diesel engine generates a relatively modest 250 hp but a very respectable 440 lb-ft of torque, making it a competitive option for those who need a light-duty truck with both luxury and robust hauling capabilities.
The Power Stroke diesel may not be available in the light-duty F-150 anymore, but it lives on in Ford’s Super Duty lineup, which consists of the F-250, F-350, and F-450. From 1994 through 2003, a 7.3-liter V8 featured then-cutting-edge tech like a waste-gated turbocharger and an air-to-air intercooler. In 2003, advancing technology allowed a smaller, more efficient, but still very powerful 6.0-liter Power Stroke to be born. In 2007, displacement increased to 6.4 liters, horsepower jumped to 350, and torque reached 650 lb-ft. From 2011 right through the present, the engine grew to 6.7 liters and now produces an amazing 1,200 lb-ft. of torque.
While Ford’s full-size Expedition SUV has never quite gotten around to offering a diesel option despite rumors to that effect, the titanic Ford Excursion offered two diesel engine choices during its production run from 2000 to 2005. Based on the F-250 chassis, the Excursion was a natural home for diesel power plants. The two choices were the Navistar 7.3-liter turbodiesel V8 (2000-2003) and the 6.0-liter turbodiesel V8 (2003-2005).
Chevy’s heavy-duty pickup line, consisting of the 2500 and 3500, has been fitted with multiple generations of GM’s Duramax diesel engine line since that motor was first introduced in 2001. Originally a 6.6-liter turbodiesel V8 called the LB7, it produced 300 hp and 520 lb-ft. of torque. In mid-2004, a new Duramax engine called the LLY bumped the numbers up to 310 hp and 520 lb-ft. of torque.
In 2006, the LBZ Duramax became one of the most popular iterations of this engine, cranking out up to 360 hp and 650 lb-ft. of torque. The following year saw the LMM arrive, the first Duramax with a diesel particulate filter (DPF) for lower particulate emissions. Subsequent generations of the Duramax in the HD lineup include the LML and the L5P.
Chevy’s light-duty Silverado 1500 was a latecomer to the diesel engine game, trailing its heavy-duty 2500 and 3500 stablemates by several years in getting a variant of the famed Duramax turbodiesel. In 2019, it finally got a Duramax of its own: the 3.0-liter turbodiesel inline six-cylinder LM2. It was a late-year arrival, so you won’t find too many 2019 models with the LM2. 2020 was the first full year for this engine choice. It made 277 hp and 460 lb-ft. of torque, good for a 9,300-lb tow rating. In 2023, the LZ0 model of the Duramax increased those numbers to 305 hp, 495 lb-ft. of torque, and a maximum towing capacity of 13,300 lbs.
Chevy’s midsize Colorado truck gets a Duramax of its own, although it is a scaled-down version. As a 2.8-liter four-cylinder turbodiesel, it generated only 181 hp but cranked out a very usable 369 lb-ft. of torque at a nice low 2000 RPM. This gave it a respectable 7,700 lb. towing rating. Unfortunately, it wasn’t to last, with the diesel option being discontinued for the 2023 model year.
GMC’s offering roughly parallel Chevrolet’s, being built with common bodies and many common engines. However, GMC trucks with Duramax diesel engines sometimes have slightly different horsepower and torque ratings than their more work-oriented Chevy counterparts. This is in keeping with GMC’s more upscale image, offering generally better-appointed and more luxurious trucks than Chevy. That being said, their capabilities aren’t far off from their mechanical cousins at Chevy dealers.
Variations of the Duramax have been dropped under the hood of some of GM’s full-size SUVs over the years, going all the way back to the 2006 model year when the Hummer H1 Alpha got the 305 hp LLY. Starting in 2021, the Chevy Tahoe, Chevy Suburban, GMC Yukon, and Cadillac Escalade received an option for the LM2 inline six-cylinder Duramax. Some models of the Chevy Express and GMC Savana vans have also been powered by Duramax engines between 2006 and 2017.
Ram won the race to introduce the first diesel-powered light-duty pickup truck engine in the 21st Century when it debuted the EcoDiesel in 2014. This 3.0-liter turbocharged inline six-cylinder powerplant generated 240 hp and 420 lb-ft. of torque when it was introduced, numbers that would hold steady through the 2019 model year. For 2020, Ram boosted the EcoDiesel to 260 hp and 480 lb-ft. of torque while still improving fuel economy. Sadly, the EcoDiesel was discontinued after the 2023 model year.
Ram’s heavy-duty trucks have offered the legendary Cummins diesel engine since 1989. Although the original 5.9-liter inline six-cylinder turbodiesel offered power and torque that would be considered relatively modest by today’s standards, it was a class leader at the time. Beginning in 2007, a 6.7-liter offered 350 hp and 650 lb-ft. of torque in the Ram 2500 and 3500 models. These numbers evolved over time until the 2023 models’ power plant generated 370 hp and 850 lb-ft. of torque, good for a 19,980 lb towing capacity.
From 2014 through 2019, the 3.0-liter EcoDiesel was available in the Jeep Grand Cherokee. Starting in 2020, the Jeep Wrangler began offering that engine in the Rubicon model, although it was slated to be discontinued after 2023. The Jeep Gladiator Rubicon pickup truck will continue to offer the EcoDiesel for the time being.
Imported car manufacturers haven’t tended to offer many diesel options in American-spec models, but there have been some noteworthy exceptions. For instance, Nissan offered a 5.0-liter Cummins turbo diesel V8 in the semi-heavy-duty Titan XD pickup truck from 2016 through 2019. This motor produced a respectable 555 lb-ft. of torque, but it trailed far behind the powerful diesels in domestic heavy-duty trucks. Other diesel imported trucks include some models of Mercedes Sprinter cargo and passenger vans and two models of Land Rover’s Range Rover SUV.
As you undertake your search for used diesel trucks here at Classic Honda of Midland, you might find yourself almost spoiled for choice. Whether you’re looking for tremendous towing capacity, long-term reliability, or fuel efficiency for over-the-road deliveries, you should find a truck, van, or SUV that meets your needs. Remember that even 100,000 miles is barely broken in when looking at a well-maintained diesel vehicle, and you’ll have even more options to find power for the long, long haul.