Mark: Hi, it’s Mark from Top Local, we’re here with Bernie Pawlik, Pawlik Automotive in Vancouver, Vancouver’s best auto service experience. We’re talking cars. How’re you doing Bernie?
Bernie: I’m doing very well
Mark: Actually today I lied, we’re talking trucks and we’re venturing into where there be dragons. We’re going to say what’s the difference between Dodge diesels versus Ford diesels, which are tougher, what do you got to say Bernie?
Bernie: Well I know it’s going to be a controversial topic because Dodge lovers love their Dodges and Ford lovers love their Fords and most people with these kind of vehicles tend to defend their chosen brand. So, I’m not out to offend anyone I’m just telling it like I see it probably throwing a bit of my own opinion in.
So let’s start off which is tougher, I mean they both have their merits, my sort of gut feeling as which is a really tougher truck if you really just want to bash it around is probably the Ford. But we can start to get into some specific areas on the vehicles.
Mark: Okay, so in our notes, you’ve not front ends. What’s going on with the front ends, what wears out on the front end of these trucks?
Bernie: Okay, so for a front end, so when we’re talking about front end we’re talking about the steering suspension of the vehicle and so I would say definitely the Ford is distinctively, it’s noticeably tougher than the Dodge and one critique of the Dodge trucks is the ball joints and the tie rod ends tend tow wear out pretty frequently and you’d be lucky to get a 100 thousand kilometres or 60 thousand miles out of your ball joints and tie rod ends on a Dodge. Whereas, on a Ford they typically last much longer. Actually we had two vehicles in the shop, a 2008 Dodge and then a 2010 Ford, so I actually took some pictures of the front ends. I’ll show you a few comparisons. It’s a little unscientific but let’s have a look at a few things here. So we’ve got out, this is the the Dodge front end. So this is the view of the steering knuckle area, this is the universal joint you can see a quarter for comparison, again kind of unscientific, the pictures are not exactly to scale but we’ll have a look at the Ford here. This is the Ford, now again maybe I’ll just toggle back and forth between pictures but the Ford, up here this is the tie rod end, must stronger on the Ford than the Dodge. The universal joint basically, if you see it with your eyes, you can see the universal joint for the four wheel drive is much larger, the ball joints are a little bigger and this makes a difference to durability. So again, we’ll go back to the Dodge again the scale of the pictures is a little different but I’ll click back a couple of times, you can kind of see it. So then tie rod ends, this is the Ford, this is the outer tie rod end on the Ford, extremely thick bar, much larger tie rod end and if we look at the Dodge, again it’s take from a little more of a distance, but you can see the knuckle attachment is thinner, these things don’t break but they all contribute to the strength of the vehicle. So there’s a bit of a comparison there, so that’s a front end so definitely those are much more durable on Fords than Dodges. Though I will say that when you have to replace the universal joint on the Dodge, it’s an expensive job on either truck, but it’s cheaper on the Dodge because Ford has designed this automatic locking hub mechanism and there’s a number of extra seals that need to be replaced when you do the u-joint, so it adds to the cost, it’s more expensive on the Ford.
Mark: Okay, so we’ve talked about the front end in detail, so what about engines which is where the rubber meets the road so to speak with everybody’s ego.
Bernie: Yeah, so for this hangout, we’re just talking about the late model, late 2000’s Ford and Dodges. So we’ve got the 6.7 litre Cummins in the Dodge, we’ve got the 6.4 litre engine in the Ford. I mean, they’re both great running engines, for my money I’d go with the Dodge, more reliable, it’s a little simpler, it’s only got six cylinders versus eight so when things do go wrong, say you need a set of fuel injectors, you’re only going to need six versus eight, there’s just a lot less, you know the Cummins has been a pretty proven reliable engine. These both have a lot of emission equipment on them, they’ve got the diesel particulate filters so the fuel economy in these late 2000’s is worse than it was on the previous generation because of the emission equipment and it’s caused some complication. But overall, the Dodges have less problems an I would, you know for my money I’d go with the Dodge over the Ford.
Mark: And how about the transmission and the rest of the drivetrain?
Bernie: Well the Ford wins for the transmission department. This is one of the weaknesses of the Dodge, the automatic transmissions definitely have problems. Now if you buy one that’s a standard, you don’t have that problem and we do service a lot of Dodges with standards but as far as automatic transmissions, definitely Fords are more reliable. As far as the rest of the drivetrain, the differentials, we don’t see problems with either of them, they’re all really good. Of course, if you’re hauling extremely heavy loads you’re going to start wearing things out but for the Dodge and Ford they both seem to be pretty much equivalent. I think again, it seems like the Fords are built just a little tougher than the Dodges, but overall the drivetrains I think are good in both.
Mark: So final conclusion, which one is tougher in your eyes?
Bernie: Well, I think the Ford is but I like the Dodge engine better so I don’t know. You can’t really mix and match them, if you could it’d be a lot of work, but in my opinion, you know, it’s which truck you like better, go with it. If you’re going to go with the Dodge, just expect you’re going to be doing more front end work than you will on the Ford. Personally, I would take the Dodge, that’s just me.
Mark: So there you go, it’s pretty darn close. So if you have a Ford or a Dodge diesel truck that you want reliable expert service on, the guys to call in Vancouver are Pawlik Automotive. You can reach them at 604-327-7112 to book your appointment, they’re busy so you’ve got to book ahead or check out their website got a ton of videos on there covering all kinds of subjects - pawlikautomotive.com. Thanks Bernie
Bernie: Thanks Mark