MPG Challenge: 2018 Chevy Silverado HD Duramax Surprises Us on the Highway Towing Loop (Video)

How will the new 2018 Chevy Silverado HD will do on our highway MPG towing loop with about 12,500 lbs behind it? Will it do better or worse than the 2018 Ram HD Cummins and the 2018 Ford F250 Power Stroke V8 diesels?

We are here to find out. The truck you see here is a 3500 HD one-ton crew cab 4×4 with a High Country luxury trim package. Why are we comparing this one-ton single-rear-wheel to the other 3/4-ton trucks? These are the trucks that we are able to get, but also they are very comparable because all three trucks we tested had an approximately the same curb weight of 8,000 lbs.

Under the hood of the Silverado is the new 6.6L Duramax V8 turbo-diesel that is rated at 445 hp and 910 lb-ft of torque. It’s mated to a 6-speed Allison automatic transmission.

Behind the truck is the same CM Trailers 20-foot Cargo Mate that is loaded to a total weight of 12,500 lbs. It’s the same trailer and the same torsion cushioned GenY Hitch that we used with the Ford and the Ram trucks on this same loop.

We use the same procedure by going a constant 70 MPH on the highway with cruise control to approximately 98 miles. It’s the same truck stop fueling station and the same route every time.

[Spoiler alert: The Silverado HD Duramax got the best result of the three. It was 12.2 MPG.]

Here is how the other heavy duty trucks stack up.

Year Make Model Powertrain Highway Towing MPG
2018 Chevy HD 3500 Crew 4×4 SRW 6.6L V8 Diesel/445 HP/3.73 axle 12.3
2018 Ram HD 2500 Crew 4×4 6.7L I6 Diesel/370 HP/3.42 axle 10.9
2017 Ford F250 Crew 4×4 6.7L V8 Diesel/440 HP/3.55 axle 10.0
2017 Ford F250 Reg 2WD 6.2L V8 Gas/385 HP/ 8.6
2017 Ram HD 2500 Reg 2WD 6.4L V8 Gas/410 HP/ 7.3