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I stopped into my local dealer the other day and took a new 2018 2055 Tradesman for a spin.

I really liked it. I especially like the stiffer suspension that actually felt like a truck to me.

I have a feeling that when I get my settlement cash, a new 2500 might be in my future.

This is the one I drove.

https://www.mychryslerdodgejeepram.com/new/Ram/2018-Ram-2500-81418c750a0e0ae90138d8b4432af8ef.htm
Nice good, basic HD truck. I would paint the wheel flares the body color and upsize the radio if I were shopping for a 2500.
 

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Exactly what I would buy. It has the 3:42 rear end ratio. That provides a real reduction in rpm at higher crusing speeds allowing much better fuel mileage. The ones with the 3:75's take a big hit on fuel mileage at speeds above 68 mph. Unfortunately you cannot get that 3:42 in the 2019 Cummins. To me that's a good reason to get a 2018. That 3:42 ration will pull tons more than any Ecodiesel and easily deal with larger trailers far beyond the scope of the most capable Ecodiesel

Now the 2018 has the mechanical Cummins valve system. You will have to do valve adjustments say every 100K. You get the CP3 injector pump which is real reliable. The engine block and pistons are brick solid but not as friction free as the completely re-designed 2019 Cummins. That is a Generation 5 engine with major block, piston, rod and hydraulic valve changes. The 2019 was designed to be a lighter and more fuel-efficient engine. Unfortunately the rear end ratio mitigates those gains. With the 2018 you get the older 48RE transmission which has some minor shift lever glitches. The 2019 models have a revised 48RE transmission to handle those issues and deal with the extra 50 ft. lbs of torque. The future holds a ZF 8 speed transmission but that may be a couple years off.

That radio selection has Bluetooth. Near a must today to deal with phone answering. Wish I had something like that as mine does not have the ability to do hands-free phone operation. That makes it illegal in Georgia and soon to be a problem here in Florida. That is the exact radio I would want.

I like the truck you are looking at. If would be my choice if I wanted to get a 2018 right now.
 

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When I bought my Ecodiesel, the salesman said, could probably get a 2500 with a Cummins for the same price, I said great, now can it get 30 mpg? Nope BTW, bought my Ecodiesel 1st of August, last year, now mid May it's ready for it's 40,000 mile oil change.;) Looks like I'll be putting on around 48-50,000 miles per year. Thats a lot of gallons of diesel difference. So as I figure $2,290.75 more for me to drive a Cummins per year. If this little Ecodiesel let's me down, a Cummins will be in my future!;)
 

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Research resale prices of a 2014 EcoDiesel vs 2014 Cummins same mileage same models, Then figure back cost of each vehicle new at the time when purchased . Then figure fuel savings difference between the 2 vehicles , figure 10 mpg difference ( Mines 8mpg ) come back and please report accurately.

Capt paid 34 k new EcoDiesel Tradesmen 115,000 miles used value 15k

A new Tradesmen Cummins was around 38k -40k in 2014.

My neighbor just sold his well used ranch truck 2012 3500 Tradesmen with 140,000 miles for 22k on Craig’s list, in 1 day and the new owner went by at 10 pm to give a deposit to hold the truck , my friend said he had about 6 calls the day he sold it ....He paided 36k in 2012 ...

Now this doesn’t compare ride quality or no need for bigger truck, a justifiable need and use for a truck....
 

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Those comparisons quickly get complicated with all the variables. Gawd forbid you live in a state with high registration fees based on vehicle value or higher insurance fees.

Mid 40's ain't too bad for all that 3/4 ton capability.
 

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Research resale prices of a 2014 EcoDiesel vs 2014 Cummins same mileage same models, Then figure back cost of each vehicle new at the time when purchased . Then figure fuel savings difference between the 2 vehicles , figure 10 mpg difference ( Mines 8mpg ) come back and please report accurately.

Capt paid 34 k new EcoDiesel Tradesmen 115,000 miles used value 15k

A new Tradesmen Cummins was around 38k -40k in 2014.

My neighbor just sold his well used ranch truck 2012 3500 Tradesmen with 140,000 miles for 22k on Craig’s list, in 1 day and the new owner went by at 10 pm to give a deposit to hold the truck , my friend said he had about 6 calls the day he sold it ....He paided 36k in 2012 ...

Now this doesn’t compare ride quality or no need for bigger truck, a justifiable need and use for a truck....
All true but we are in Florida with mint trucks 17 years old...he is in Michigan and the road salt/batteyr acid chews through those trucks. Up there they advertise used vehicles as 'Florida Truck'...Texas, AZ, ect.
Plus the roads suck from plows and pot holes...beats the suspension to death...
 

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I’m fortunate to live in The Great State of Florida!!!! We’re allowed to choose our Trucks weight load , I register at 9999lbs this gives me
Enough carrying capacity of 1ton in my bed , I pay 100 .00 per year registration No other taxes....

And we’re allowed to pull 27k not including truck with a 1 ton , BTW my neighbor is head of DOT for central Florida, he gave me the numbers to work with....

https://www.cummins.com/engines/cummins-67l-turbo-diesel-2019 And yes There’s a lot of variables ,look on the bottom left side of crankshaft? That’s the crankshaft positioning sensor , How many reluctor wheels have gone bad which requires removing transmission? Water pump 2 bolts,hardest part of job is releasing belt tension and replacing coolant.. Or stuck glow plugs in a aluminum head , which required head removal
Turbo replacement access removing fender well 11 screws . The list of easy maintenance goes on....

These Cummins are still extremely simple to work on , well designed basically Tractor engines very accessible ....

Everyone thinks it happens to others, not them .... Until?.... This isn’t living in fear , This is thinking about reality....
 

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Honestly, when Ram puts the 8 speed ZF behind the Cummins in a 2500, things could get interesting.
Agree. "Interesting" is an operative word.

First issue on that topic is the final gear ratio. With the highest, lowest numerically, rear-end ration available as a 3:75, the fuel mileage is an issue tied to rpm. Granted heavy towing owners would want that lower gear ratio and even a set of 4:10's. Not on my watch. I know that with the current 6 speed the package runs over 2,000 rpm at 70 mph. That puts the older Cummins into a higher rpm operation and a greater fuel consumption range than operations below that rpm. Granted wind resistance is an issue but a big factor is the sustained rpm needed to run above 70 mph.

Now a ZF 8 speed may indeed bring that final ratio down a bit, lower the rpm and combine with the re-designed Cummins engine to achieve better fuel mileage over the old engine.

Well the next consideration is the ZF transmission itself. It will have to be modified to handle the extra torque of a Cummins - new or old engine design. Then there's the lingering issue I have with bad ZF design by both not having a dip stick and not having a reasonable way to add fluid to the transmission. The current ZF is very difficult to check fluid levels. It's even more difficult to add fluid or change and re-fill if needed. Those two factors make it a loser in my book, in spite of their growing reputation for reliability used in the Ecodiesel program.

To me this final gear ratio and transmission is a major factor in staying away from the new Cummins until more information is available on just what the efficiency is at highway speeds for the current 2019 Cummins/2500 package. Couple that with the unknown situation of a probably new Ecodiesel and my conclusion is to do nothing.

Nothing is what I am good at doing.
 

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These Cummins are still extremely simple to work on , well designed basically Tractor engines very accessible ....

Everyone thinks it happens to others, not them .... Until?.... This isn’t living in fear , This is thinking about reality....
This is what finally sold my dad on a cummins. I have always loved cummins, but for what I do with one I just cant justify owning one. If I could have taught my wife to drive a manual i'd still have my 2010 3500 :(
 

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This is what finally sold my dad on a cummins. I have always loved cummins, but for what I do with one I just cant justify owning one. If I could have taught my wife to drive a manual i'd still have my 2010 3500 :(
My manual Cummins was getting "rough" and causing me some relatively major repairs. Last one was a new rear main, clutch, complete transmission plus universal to rear end, steering box, front bushings and more. Then the body seemed to get bumped here and there, looking like a pock-marked hail victim front and back. I even tore up the front seat with a screwdriver in my pocket. After a while it just seems like a change would be nice. The wife liked how it ran and hinted, thought she could drive a stick, a model with higher seat and automatic would be nice.

Got the automatic and she still does not like to drive. My mistake and now I'm stuck with that automatic that I detest. Now as age increases along with traffic, I see where that is a reasonable option.

Oh well, gotta go. Some lady backed into the side of my Ecodiesel and caved the side in. Her insurance is giving me a loaner all week so I have to go drop it off at a local body shop. Shades of what my old Cummins started to look like.
 

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I bought a srw 3500 because we pulled a 30-foot gooseneck 400 miles round trip with a tractor every time we went to the ranch. little over a year after I bought it we built a big metal shop with living quarters and left the tractor there. I got married and the trailer sat for probably 5 years without moving, owning a vehicle my wife couldn't drive didn't make since and I didn't need it so I got rid of it. Still miss laying into the go pedal and rowing through the gears. Maybe some day ill have another but until then it will just be fond memories.

I tried to teach her to drive it 3 times and I just cringed. No way I would want her out on the road in it to wreck it and hurt herself or our kids all at the same time. Just seemed smarter choice to move on.
 

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Must be a different generation. My wife grew up with manual transmissions. She even easily operated my old tractor, until it came time to turn the steering wheel. She did not have the strength and forgot how nice power steering is. I learned decades ago to never even try to turn the steering wheel unless you were moving. The old parallel parking used to be an exercise without power steering. That's all I knew - manual transmission, drum brakes and manual steering with rayon tires that lasted 7,000 miles.
 

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My wife is bugging me to pick up an old rez rocket car with a standard transmission. Not good enough to use for anything but teaching the kids how to drive stick. I think it is very important for people, my kids especially to know how to drive different vehicles or machinery. Although I think owning a HD truck with a Cummins and a stick would be a bit cantankerous for daily driving needs.

A neighbour of ours, who is a cattle farmer, runs two mid 2000 common rail Cummins trucks. One auto and one with the G56. You rarely see them with the auto outside driving around, they just prefer the stick.

I think that with the improvements on the 68RFE and the AS69RC, the auto is just a nice, easy to use option. I love rowing gears but that AS69RC is so damn close to how a manual shifts, its kinda cool!
 

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BrianF ... It appears we use our trucks in the same manner and our neighbors seem to be the same type of folks :eek: Your description of the Aisin transmission is basically my opinion as well , it’s a Real Heavy Duty Transmission ... I’ve noticed more issues with the G56 clutch assembly than issues with either of the automatics,unless the owners tune additional hp and add oversized tires and don’t re-gear , this is a recipe for transmission failures ...

My brother has a 68rfe he seems to achieve about 1.5-2 mpgs better fuel economy than my Aisin...It’s difficult to compare though,I’m pulling 20k plus on a regular basis, I rarely unhook my gooseneck lately....I believe both trucks would have very similar highway only mpgs , he’s regularly getting 20-21 mpgs on his daily drives , and lately he’s been getting 22+ with our summer heat 95 F + degrees and summer fuel all hand calculated...
 

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Our Big Blue has been parked for the month, left hooked up to the horse trailer. We got some new moccasins on our Trailblazer, so it is back to daily driving duties. She takes Blue out running horses here and there. I gave up tracking mileage. Meh.

Trying to look objectively at the transmissions... My friends who run the G56, its stock power, believe its still the lower output 5.9 and has stock tires. They pull heavy and pull long distances but gasp! drive respectable and have no issues. Another friend runs a 2011 with the 68. He is deleted but stock tune, stock tires. He has not serviced his transmission in its 270-280,000km life. He often pulls well north of the trucks capacity. He too drives respectable and it never missed a beat.
 

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BrianF.... You’ve got Big Blue , I’ve named mine Patches :eek:. Again we have the same type of neighbors , 2 neighbors had the G56 ,one of those 2 recently traded his G56 for a 68rfe . His G56 was slipping the clutch with a tune on 30hp ,Apparently it irritated him about 1year after tuning he traded for his 2018 68rfe he’s very pleased with the new truck.

A transmission tune from CTT/HPP makes a world of difference with a 68rfe , It shifts beautiful,no lugging or early shifts . Revmax recommends using CTT transmission tunes . One of my friends about 3 months ago deleted with HPP now CTT he’s kinda obsessed with tracking his mpgs . At first his tuning seemed negligible in the mpg department, Our temperatures here are a steady 90F plus and his last 3 fill ups 21mpgs , This is about a 2 mpg gain from last summer..

Not sure about your opinion on G56 ? My opinion is I’m seeing quite a bit more issues with the manual transmissions than either automatic’s , usually clutch failures, not even tuned..Too much factory HP ? ..I believe this is the reason the G56 went bye bye...

My only complaint with the Aisin, It downshifts to easily on the slightest grade, Unfortunately the transmission doesn’t realize or ability to see it’s only a slight grade overpass and if I don’t downshift from 5th to 4th pulling heavy when I crest the top of a overpass it’ll downshift :mad: IMOP they need to program a lock / hold gear longer option to help with these situations, nothing worse on a automatic’s transmission than short shifting with a load ..

BTW same opinion on tracking fuel mileage with my truck....We use them to pull...
 

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Well I'm waiting for the Cummins 2500 4 x 4 that will do 24 mpg solid cruising down the road.

I'm waiting, waiting, waiting and ......... waiting.
 
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