It’s tough to decide on the greatest of all time, but that’s what MotorTrend set out to do. The publication got to work picking the 10 best diesel pickup trucks of all time. It acknowledges these types of opinions will never be unanimous. But MT took a look at drivetrain performance (including fuel economy) and towing/payload capabilities to determine the best light- and heavy-duty diesel trucks.
The list includes the 2020 Ford F-Series Super Duty lineup. And here’s why it got a special shout-out.
2020 Ford F-Series Super Duty named MotorTrend’s ‘Best Diesel for Towing’
Among other diesel trucks on MotorTrend’s list, the 2020 Ford F-Series Super Duty ranks as the best diesel pickup truck for towing. The line includes the F-250, F-350, and F-450. These trucks are designed to handle tough jobs, and their optional diesel engine also makes them extra-powerful.
MotorTrend calls the Ford diesel “the current ‘almighty’ engine among the latest Big Three heavy-duty pickups.” It’s a third-generation 6.7-liter Power Stroke V8 diesel engine producing 450 hp and a whopping 1,050 lb-ft of torque. It pairs with a 10-speed automatic transmission.
The 2020 Ford F-250 diesel
The standard engine on the 2020 Ford F-250 is a 6.2-liter V8 matched with a six-speed automatic transmission. There’s also a new 7.3-liter gas V8 and a revised 6.7-liter diesel V8.
The 2020 F-250 is available with a regular cab, SuperCab, or crew cab and offers two bed-length options. The Ford F-250 can tow up to 20,000 pounds with a SuperCab, eight-foot bed, and diesel engine, Ford reports. With a gooseneck or fifth-wheel, that increases to 22,800 pounds. The configuration that can reach that maximum is the two-wheel-drive F-250 with a diesel engine, regular cab, and eight-foot bed. Even when not fully equipped, the F-250 can still tow 12,200 pounds. The larger F-350 can tow up to 37,000 pounds when properly equipped.
Though the F-250’s interior is nice, MotorTrend points out the styling is beginning to feel a bit old. But the design saw a significant refresh for 2020. The F-250 also has optional technology features. They include Pro Trailer Backup Assist and a 360-degree camera system, the Sync 3 infotainment system with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, and a 4G Wi-Fi modem. Available advanced safety features include automatic emergency braking, forward-collision warning, and blind-spot monitoring.
More of the best diesel trucks of all time
The 10 diesel pickup trucks on MotorTrend’s list dominate for various reasons. Here are the other nine winners:
- Timeless Diesel: 1989–1993 Dodge Ram D-250 and D-350
- Best Used Diesel Value: 2003–2008 Dodge Ram 2500 and 3500 HD
- Most Capable Diesel: 2010–2013 Ram 2500 Heavy Duty
- First 1,000 lb-ft Diesel: 2020 Ram 3500 Heavy Duty
- Best Budget Diesel: 1999–2003 Super Duty
- Best Diesel to Modify: 2008–2010 Super Duty
- Best Pre-Emissions Diesel: 2006–2007 Chevrolet/GMC 2500HD and 3500HD
- Best Hot-Rod Diesel: 2020 Chevrolet Silverado/GMC Sierra 1500
- Best Diesel Drivetrain: 2020 Chevrolet/GMC 2500HD and 3500HD
Overall, there are plenty of reasons why Ford F-Series pickup trucks have outsold all other vehicles for years. Among those reasons are the Ford F-250 and its best-in-class diesel power and torque. Its towing capability also helps make it one of the top diesel trucks of all time.