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Old 08-18-2009, 11:20 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Best 5.9?

Looking to buy a Dodge with a Cummins diesel, and I know that the 5.9 has changed over the years.

What year is the best, and why?

Reliability, MPG, Other.........
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Old 08-18-2009, 11:36 PM   #2 (permalink)
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ALL sorts of opinions on this topic but ill chime in and give you my .02c


03-07 5.9L CR
these are good trucks and come with some great horsepower from the factory, plus there all up to date on all of the looks and quality. they get decent fuel mileage too. These are especially good for towing because if you plan on doing any upgrades they're really easy to handle you could get a programmer for better fuel mileage, towing capacity, and more drivability. The seats are nice and they're alot newer and the CR is more quiet than any of the previous 5.9s

98-02 5.9L 24v
These are good trucks as well for the same listed above. The only difference is they are not common rail trucks, they use the vp44 injection system, from what i hear there power is limited but none the less it is a very reliable motor, if you wanted to tune the 24v its best to get an aftermarket fuel pump, i dont own one but im sure fuel mileage is comparable.

12v im not too sure of but i know you can get good reliable Horsepower and torque out of these motors for the cheapest $$$buck. problem is finding one with a low mileage, also these engines have numerous reports of being the most reliable 5.9 money can buy with numerous reports of exceeding 500k and climbing fewer reports reaching 1mil miles.


Hope this helps
Best of luck to you.
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Old 08-19-2009, 06:06 PM   #3 (permalink)
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i have to agree with bullydogdallas. My dad has a '94 12v and pulls 19mpg around town stock with 120k miles. I've seen those trucks go forever. As long as you keep up on the maintenance on any of those motors they will last a lifetime.
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Old 08-19-2009, 09:33 PM   #4 (permalink)
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i have to agree with bullydogdallas. My dad has a '94 12v and pulls 19mpg around town stock with 120k miles. I've seen those trucks go forever. As long as you keep up on the maintenance on any of those motors they will last a lifetime.
I had the opportunity to drive my dads '95 12v for a month and averaged 22mpg.

I understand VP44 replaced the old injection pump in '97.

Is the same fuel economy still achievable with the VP44 version?
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Old 08-19-2009, 09:58 PM   #5 (permalink)
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The VP pump started in '98.5 in order for Dodge to meet emissions laws.
It's use was a stop gap measure because the CR engine wasn't ready yet.
I'm certain if it wasn't for the smog laws they would have kept using the P pump.
VP pumped trucks seem to get a couple mpgs less than the earlier P pumped trucks.
Of the three engine evolutions the VP pumped engines are for sure the least reliable.
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Old 08-20-2009, 11:51 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Powerstroke Tech View Post
Looking to buy a Dodge with a Cummins diesel, and I know that the 5.9 has changed over the years.

What year is the best, and why?

Reliability, MPG, Other.........
Reliability is a toss up between the 1st gen 12 Valve with the VE, or the 2nd Gen 12 Valve.

MPG king is hands down the VE, if they are all in stock form. Even with power adders, the little rotary pump generally delivers better mpg than the others. The 1st Gen's are also lighter than the other generations.

If you want all out power, the 2nd Gen 12 Valve is the only way to go.
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Old 08-20-2009, 12:05 PM   #7 (permalink)
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If you want all out power, the 2nd Gen 12 Valve is the only way to go.
Negatory. Common Rail. Im not downing the 12v, but its not the only platform to make power.


Hows the VP a "stop gap?" Cummins has been on a 4 year cycle since the Cummins was put into Dodge; 89-93 VP, 94-98, 98-02, 03-07. See a pattern there? ALL 4 years before the next injection pump was released. Now its still Common Rail, though a 6.7, so what are we gonna see in 2011?

Go CR, you get a newer, more spacious, comfortable truck, with the new go-to platform for power. Dont be fooled into thinking a 12v is cheap to get power out of, you gotta dump just as much into a 12v as a CR to make big power. For the best mileage, 03-04 is the way to go. And it just so happens that they make more power than the 04.5-07 trucks do when serious mods are made
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Old 08-20-2009, 09:37 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Quote:
Hows the VP a "stop gap?"
Because Cummins said they had to use the VP for variable electronic timing to meet emissions.
They weren't planning on using the VP, the plan was to go straight to the common rail from the P pump but the CR wasn't ready when they had planned on it.
Cummins has stated they were very disappointed with the VP and wished they hadn't of had to use it.
As for the four year business it's because the EPA diesel emissions tiers came in four year increments starting in 1994. 2010 is the final tier, no more emissions upgrades for on road diesel engines after that unless new laws are passed.
Cummins met the final 2010 tier requirement last year ahead of all other diesel engine manufacturers.
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Last edited by illflem; 08-20-2009 at 09:39 PM.
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Old 08-20-2009, 10:01 PM   #9 (permalink)
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I think it depends on what oyu want o do with the truck. Toy? Im a huge 12V fan (obviously because I drive one) I disagree, they are cheaper to mod up, 900 bucks for injector opposed to 1500 bucks. the problem is that they are worn out trucks by now, oh the motor will last forever, unfortunately the body wont (cummins os the best motor ever, its only problem is that they wrapped it in a Dodge...)

If you looking for a daily driver, I'd get a newer one, more comfortable. Im not a fan of the 6.7s, too many bugs to work out yet. if your gonna mod it up, 02-04. stock, Id go 04.5, more power stock.

VP trucks are good and you can still find osme low mileage one out there, the only problem is that the VP44 pump can be a 1500 dollar failure if hte lift pump got weak, or the PO chipped it up and didnt do any support work to the lift pump. VP truck's problem is they start to get starved for fuel, get hot, and bye bye injection pump!

take it as my 2 cents...btw, Im a mechanic, if that adds any clout to my opnion is up to you =-b
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Old 08-20-2009, 10:11 PM   #10 (permalink)
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they are all great reliable trucks..it just depends what you want..if you want CHEAPER power and no use of a chip or any type of programming, then get a 12v..if you want a truck that requires a good lift pump, but you can use a chip or programmer, then get a 98.5 to 02 24 valve..and if you want a new body style truck and also able to use a chip or programmer then get a common rail..and lastly if you want the newest possible truck and engine then get a 6.7..no matter what way you look at it, they all have PLENTY of power..they all are RELIABLE, they all get ok MPGs, they ALL have their own PROBLEMS, and they all sound so SWEET!!!!
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Old 08-20-2009, 11:15 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Thanks for the input everyone.

Pricewise it looks as though the only two options for me will be 5.9 p pump or the 5.9 vp. I'm not concerned with powering it up. I just want a long lasting reliable fuel efficient truck that is able to tow a fully loaded toy hauler up mountain roads.

It sounds like both will work for me with the edge going to p pump for better mpg and no lift pump problems.

The trick now will be to find one with the chassie in good enough shape.
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