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Dodge 3.9L vs. Ford 4.2L vs. Chevy 4.3L V6: Which is best?

Discussion in 'Trucks and Trailers' started by genesis215, Jan 26, 2009.

  1. genesis215

    genesis215 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 795

    I only have one walk-behind mower to pull so a V6 will do just fine for me. I really don't know much about these engines. What little I have heard is that alot of the Ford 4.2L's don't seem to last past 150k miles before blowing up. Again, I really don't know; it could be due to hard driving, and poor vehicle maintenance. I haven't heard anything about the Dodge 3.9L though, and have not heard very much about the Chevy 4.3L. Could anybody give their experiences? Thanks for your help.
  2. Greg78

    Greg78 LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,010

    We got a GMC van with the 4.3 just over 190,000 and no problems at all. :usflag:
  3. South Florida Lawns

    South Florida Lawns LawnSite Platinum Member
    from usa
    Messages: 4,784

    I have an 03 silverado with the 4.3 V6. It pulls my 16ft enclosed with my Z and stander just fine. 200k miles on it been trouble free since I bought it new.

    We had an 02 dakota nice little truck with the 3.9 but I thought that thing was a gutless dog that couldn't even get out of its own way. it got terrible millage too.
  4. TXNSLighting

    TXNSLighting LawnSite Fanatic
    from DFW, TX
    Messages: 6,464

    The dodge gas engines are weak links unless its a hemi. Ford and GM have great gassers. So either the Ford or GM will serve you well. I dont know if youre looking new or not, cuz ford no longer makes a V6 anymore. Which is fine with me. IMO the only good 6 cylinder is an inline.
  5. Albery's Lawn & Tractor

    Albery's Lawn & Tractor LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,674

    The ford 4.2 is a great engine for what it is. The main problem with them is the factory intake gasket will crack at the corner and the allow water to slowly enter the cylinder. Its a pain to fix, but if you do it when you first notice your loosing water your fine. I've had 2 of these trucks, water leaked into my number 4 cylinder and when we went to start it one day, boom bent connecting rod. That truck had just over 100K on it. My current truck has over 165K and this past summer it finally started loosing water, replaced the gasket and its good to go again. The 4.2 has a little more power then the 4.3 too. Either way you'll be getting a good truck.
  6. genesis215

    genesis215 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 795

    What fuel mileage do you get with these?
  7. Albery's Lawn & Tractor

    Albery's Lawn & Tractor LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,674

    I average around 13 pulling my enclosed loaded (about 5500 lbs)

    NEW CITY LAWN CARE LLC LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,271

    Personally I would go 5.7L Either Tundra or New Dodge Ram both with 390 HP, your only talking about a couple mpg's, so its well worth the extra power.
  9. Albery's Lawn & Tractor

    Albery's Lawn & Tractor LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,674

    and just spend 5 times your budget for that new truck. Some people really shouldn't give advice unless they can stay on topic.
  10. Gravel Rat

    Gravel Rat LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 9,544

    The only good V-6 Ford produced was the 4.0. The 4.3 Chevy is pretty good the highways maintenance dept used to have Chevy 1/2 tons with the 4.3 on propane they did pretty good even driven a little hard :laugh:

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