What motor/tranny is best on pre-89 GM diesel?

Discussion in 'Trucks and Trailers' started by Cheryl, Jan 1, 2004.

  1. Cheryl

    Cheryl LawnSite Member
    from Florida
    Posts: 95

    Looking for a used diesel GM PU truck. Looking at reliability of power train alone, what year 6.2/6.5 diesel should I look at? What transmission should I look at?

    Thanks,
     
  2. pottstim

    pottstim LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 501

    If you are considering pre-89 trucks, then a 6.2 L powered truck is your only option. GM didn't start offering the 6.5 in their trucks until the 1992 model year. After the 82-83 model years, the 6.2 was a pretty decent engine. During those 2 model years, they had a problem with head gasket failures. The nice thing about a 6.2 is they were easy to work on and got decent fuel mileage. They were equipped with the simple mechanical injection pumps. The diesels of today have the complex electronic pumps. I will tell you this. If you are looking for a truck with a tremendous amount of power, the 6.2 is not for you. My dad had an '86 Chevy K20 with a 6.2 as a company truck. It was a solid truck in every way, but it was slow acceleration-wise and top speed was in the 60-65 mph range because of the lack of power and low gearing. If I were looking for a 6.2 powered truck, I would opt for one with the turbo 400 automatic, or the SM-465 4 speed manual transmission (dad's truck had this transmission). I hope I have provided you with some information that will help you out. I know there are some other folks here that can also share some good information. Best of luck.
     
  3. ksss

    ksss LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 7,131

    I had an 84 1 ton with 6.2 and currently have an 88 1 ton with 6.2L. If your pulling, turbo 400 and 4:10 gears. The 700 R4 got great mileage but doesn't hold up especially if your pulling. Good engines if maintained. There are guys with over 1 million miles on them. However, your not going to pull anything real heavy, real fast. I have had no complaints with mine other then I wished they had more power.
     

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