2014 Ultimate One-Ton HD Challenge
It’s been almost four years since we last rounded up all three one-ton dualie competitors. In that time, all three have made significant upgrades in performance, passenger comfort and technology. For this test, all three trucks were one-ton 4×4 crew-cab dualies with 3.73:1 axle gears and maximum-output turbo-diesel engines. No price limits here; that’s why we’re calling this our Ultimate One-Ton Heavy-Duty Challenge.
We’ve pitted these competitors because this segment has so much at stake. Ford’s F-350 has a stronger Power Stroke engine and improved exhaust brake; GMC’s Sierra 3500 HD has a new look, all-new interior and an upgraded exhaust brake; and the Ram 3500 HD offers a new front suspension and a multilevel exhaust brake. How do they compare?
We broke this exhaustive testing into 19 different quantitative tests, from a quarter-mile track to a Michigan fuel-economy run to max-load towing up infamous hill climbs like Davis Dam on the Arizona/Nevada border and Colorado’s Eisenhower Pass. Each of these tests was conducted with monster trailers.
The winner was determined by combining scores from empirical data we collected during acceleration, braking and other tests using calculated formulas along with our expert judges’ scores in six important aspects of each truck. In the end, we simply added up the scores.