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The cost of a Diesel Truck

schlep1967
Nomad
Nomad
I often see discussions on here about gas versus diesel. Most will agree that diesels pull better and generally last longer. Then the discussion of cost comes in and everything gets messy.

I just wanted to share my recent experience with a diesel truck. I bought a 2007.5 Dodge Ram 2500 in November of 2008. I paid $41,038 for it new. I drove the truck for 13.5 years and sold it last night for $25,500. My cost per year was $1,150. Yes there were 12 quart oil changes along the way that cost me around $85 each time. My typical mileage running around locally was around 16 and towing was around 11.

My point is, the towing advantage of a diesel really doesn't cost you all that much if you keep the truck clean and well serviced so you can recoup a good bit when it comes time to sell.

Oh yea, the replacement diesel cost me twice as much as the 2007.5 did. I'll let you know how I do on resale in about 15 years.
2021 Chevy Silverado LTZ 3500 Diesel
2022 Montana Legacy 3931FB
Pull-Rite Super Glide 4500
24 REPLIES 24

Huntindog
Explorer
Explorer
I bought my first diesel in 2001.
For me the diesel cost ot admission wasn't too bad. I had a ton of points from the original GM card. The dealer could not believe how much he had to take off... The phone lines were burning up between the dealr and GM.... The rules had changed to a less generous plan, which I never took part in.
But that said, normally the only downside to diesel is the price of admission,,, after that staying in a diesel is easy. Yes the resale is there. And if I ever decide to go back to gas, I will do very well.
Huntindog
100% boondocking
2021 Grand Design Momentum 398M
2 bathrooms, no waiting
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2020 Silverado HighCountry CC DA 4X4 DRW

Grit_dog
Nomad III
Nomad III
riltri wrote:
I will suggest that the your cost of operation was so low because you did not have to deal with the entire DEF system, especially the DEF heater. They have become overly complicated, fail often and expensive to repair.


There is certainly that added potential cost/inconvenience. But it’s also a bit overblown, the litany of issues one is “certain” to have with a new diesel.
And there are ways to fix that problem permanently as well!;)
2016 Ram 2500, MotorOps.ca EFIlive tuned, 5” turbo back, 6" lift on 37s
2017 Heartland Torque T29 - Sold.
Couple of Arctic Fox TCs - Sold

riltri
Explorer
Explorer
I will suggest that the your cost of operation was so low because you did not have to deal with the entire DEF system, especially the DEF heater. They have become overly complicated, fail often and expensive to repair.
Blue Ridge Mtns - NC

rhagfo
Explorer III
Explorer III
nickthehunter wrote:
I bought my gasser in 2019 and today I could sell it for more than I paid for it. That doesn't mean you'll make money if you buy a gasser; what it means is your comparing apples to oranges. The market has changed in the last year and everything is selling for a gazillion dollars then what it should sell for. Two years from now it could be the total opposite.


Well we bought our 2016 Ram Laramie 3500 DRW diesel the last day of 2018 with 27,000 miles on it, it now has about 74,000 miles and valued between $7K to $12K more than I paid for it in 2018.
Russ & Paula the Beagle Belle.
2016 Ram Laramie 3500 Aisin DRW 4X4 Long bed.
2005 Copper Canyon 293 FWSLS, 32' GVWR 12,360#

"Visit and Enjoy Oregon State Parks"

PButler96
Explorer
Explorer
Grit dog wrote:
Durb wrote:
It sounds like you sold your old truck too cheap unless it had a kajillion miles on it or was rusted out. I think I could get that for my 2004.5 which is about what I paid 9 years ago.


PA is a long ways from WA. Market is strong for sales everywhere, thanks to....nevermind, not going there, lol.
But the PNW and some other areas are even higher. Unlike PA and other economically depressed and much lower cost of living states.
But that's still alot of money. Diesels retain value well, but a Ram unless a G56 trans from 07.5 is less valuable overall than any comparable 5.9 3rd Gen, unless it's deleted. So I'd say he got very good money for the truck and the location.

But your right, a cherry condition, sub 150k mile 6.7 4x4 quad cab would fetch a bit more out here.


Diesel or gas it's all relative in a local market. As far as diesel when you pay $10K-$12K more on the front end just for the diesel why would you not get back some/most of it back on the backend?

A lot of the used diesel pickup market around here is also affected by the 20 something macho boys who have to have a big ole loud diesel, with a tailpipe as big as a joint compound bucket, typically a Cummins/Ram, and they'll pay top dollar for it even if it's a POS with 300K miles.


They are adding what they call "market adjustment" to MSRP. Around here it's a minimum of $5K. At the same time most still make every attempt to lowball you on a trade. They want market for the new but do not want to give you market on the trade. And taking into account no one has any most even want that market adjustment were you to order from the factory. They get a limited allotment of X from the manufacturer and they know they can get the market adjustment from someone if you're not interested. Some may even order one with your name on it with a deposit, then sell it to a higher bidder when it arrives and refund your deposit. The best deal you have gotten is probably already in your driveway.

I expect the whole new vehicle house of cards will come crashing down to reality soon. It may be fun to watch.
I have a burn barrel in my yard.

Vintage465
Nomad
Nomad
I really never brought the difference in cost into the picture. Nor did I think about the resale value. I wanted the easiest way possible to tow my trailer in my retirement years. I've towed with all sorts of different vehicles since 1982. I figured I did my apprenticeship with everything else and now-a-days I don't ever see myself towing with anything else. It's just so easy....and quiet.
V-465
2013 GMC 2500HD Duramax Denali. 2015 CreekSide 20fq w/450 watts solar and 465 amp/hour of batteries. Retired and living the dream!

Lantley
Nomad
Nomad
This is a crazy market we are in now.
All used vehicles are currently selling/returning for higher than normal prices.
The kicker is new vehicles are also selling for higher than normal prices
19'Duramax w/hips,12'Open Range,Titan Disc Brake
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Cummins12V98
Explorer III
Explorer III
Grit dog wrote:
Cummins12V98 wrote:


NW WA I recently did a $27,000 short term loan using my 01 Sport 2500 4x4 with 160k as collateral.

CRAZY times!!!


That is nuts! But it's a nice truck! 01 Sports are my favorite 2nd Gens.


Yes I really like the truck, thanks! I looked long and hard for the same with a 6 speed but no luck!

My Son has my 98 12V in DFW area and it still is a beast.
2015 RAM LongHorn 3500 Dually CrewCab 4X4 CUMMINS/AISIN RearAir 385HP/865TQ 4:10's
37,800# GCVWR "Towing Beast"

"HeavyWeight" B&W RVK3600

2016 MobileSuites 39TKSB3 highly "Elited" In the stable

2007.5 Mobile Suites 36 SB3 29,000# Combined SOLD

Grit_dog
Nomad III
Nomad III
time2roll wrote:
Good to sell into a market of vehicle shortages.
Nov 2008 was around the start of the great recession, must have gotten a good price to buy.
Impeccable timing can work wonders. Not many can double end it.


I did, bought another diesel in 2008 for $31k 10k miles on it. Sold it 2 years ago for $30k with 190k miles on it. I just didn't use that example because the numbers were skewed, bought low, sold high...

But I also generally try to extract the most value out of purchases. Not everyone does, but those that don't will "think" something isn't a good deal, just because they weren't smart about it and it actually cost them more than a lesser purchase that they also weren't smart about.
2016 Ram 2500, MotorOps.ca EFIlive tuned, 5” turbo back, 6" lift on 37s
2017 Heartland Torque T29 - Sold.
Couple of Arctic Fox TCs - Sold

time2roll
Nomad
Nomad
Good to sell into a market of vehicle shortages.
Nov 2008 was around the start of the great recession, must have gotten a good price to buy.
Impeccable timing can work wonders. Not many can double end it.

Grit_dog
Nomad III
Nomad III
Cummins12V98 wrote:


NW WA I recently did a $27,000 short term loan using my 01 Sport 2500 4x4 with 160k as collateral.

CRAZY times!!!


That is nuts! But it's a nice truck! 01 Sports are my favorite 2nd Gens.
2016 Ram 2500, MotorOps.ca EFIlive tuned, 5” turbo back, 6" lift on 37s
2017 Heartland Torque T29 - Sold.
Couple of Arctic Fox TCs - Sold

Grit_dog
Nomad III
Nomad III
valhalla360 wrote:

Resale does play a factor but the folks saying you get 100% or more of the diesel upcharge back are being unrealistic. Particularly as you get into the 15-20yr old range, the body, suspension and little odds and ends are likely pushing most people to retire the truck...not the power plant.


Sure the market fluctuations play a huge part in resale (and purchase) but take this example then since you think someone is cherry picking numbers.
2001, new gasser 4x4 truck. Purchased during the dot come recession, got a good enough price it pushed me to actually buy a brand new vehicle (because I know NEW cars are a bad investment I typically don't buy new). Sold in 2005 with 125k miles on it, pristine condition, "normal" economy. Got $7500, best I could do trying to sell it for months.
Bought used 2002 diesel 4x4 with 25k miles for $25k, sold in 2009 at the height of tht recession for $17,500 with 150k miles.

25% ROI on the gasser vs 70% on the diesel, say the numbers are skewed however you want, resale is there. Period.

And if you're trying to make the argument that a 15-20 year old high mile truck that's beat up won't fetch the full diesel premium purchase cost back, that's about the funniest thing I've heard in a while. That's like saying 2 ply toilet paper isn't a good value because it's hard to wipe your ___ with the cardboard roll...once it's used up, it's used up...
2016 Ram 2500, MotorOps.ca EFIlive tuned, 5” turbo back, 6" lift on 37s
2017 Heartland Torque T29 - Sold.
Couple of Arctic Fox TCs - Sold

Cummins12V98
Explorer III
Explorer III
Grit dog wrote:
Durb wrote:
It sounds like you sold your old truck too cheap unless it had a kajillion miles on it or was rusted out. I think I could get that for my 2004.5 which is about what I paid 9 years ago.


PA is a long ways from WA. Market is strong for sales everywhere, thanks to....nevermind, not going there, lol.
But the PNW and some other areas are even higher. Unlike PA and other economically depressed and much lower cost of living states.
But that's still alot of money. Diesels retain value well, but a Ram unless a G56 trans from 07.5 is less valuable overall than any comparable 5.9 3rd Gen, unless it's deleted. So I'd say he got very good money for the truck and the location.

But your right, a cherry condition, sub 150k mile 6.7 4x4 quad cab would fetch a bit more out here.


NW WA I recently did a $27,000 short term loan using my 01 Sport 2500 4x4 with 160k as collateral.

CRAZY times!!!
2015 RAM LongHorn 3500 Dually CrewCab 4X4 CUMMINS/AISIN RearAir 385HP/865TQ 4:10's
37,800# GCVWR "Towing Beast"

"HeavyWeight" B&W RVK3600

2016 MobileSuites 39TKSB3 highly "Elited" In the stable

2007.5 Mobile Suites 36 SB3 29,000# Combined SOLD

nickthehunter
Nomad II
Nomad II
I bought my gasser in 2019 and today I could sell it for more than I paid for it. That doesn't mean you'll make money if you buy a gasser; what it means is your comparing apples to oranges. The market has changed in the last year and everything is selling for a gazillion dollars then what it should sell for. Two years from now it could be the total opposite.