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Medium Duty Trucks Discuss GM Kodiak/Topkicks, 4500/5500 & up medium duty engine & all associated components.

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Old 12-10-2018, 04:25 PM   #1 (permalink)
shawnmav
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06' Kodiak 4x4 honest opinion

Back Story: I have an 07.5 NBS 4x4 3500HD with air bags, efi heavy tow tune/delete, KD lift pumps and all else stock. I pull a 52' LQ horse trailer with a GVW of 24k, normally it weighs between 18k to 22k depending on the rodeo. I have absolutely no issues in regards to pulling, stopping and so on. I do have to be fairly aware of temps when the outside temps get up around 92+ degrees outside.

My question is, will a 2006 kodiak 4x4 be able to maintain it's speed while pulling that trailer pulling steep and/or rolling hills or pulling in to the wind? My 3500 will pull down some but I can generally maintain 65-75 in most conditions wind or hills.
I have read and herd stories where the kodiak will pull down but max speed basically being 65mph you end up slowing down to 45mph in these same cases. I would figure with the 5:13 gear ratio they wouldn't move off of set speed much at all but that is only my assumption. I came across one for sale that I am considering and would like it as a primary puller for my trailer and my 3500HD for a back up but if some of my 14 hour trips turn in to 20 with higher fuel cost I probably won't be interested in one.

My main concern is they just don't have the power or gearing to cruise down the road and not severely pulling down on the hills or against head winds. I could live with 65-70mph being max speed but only if I know that it can hold that speed up hill and down against the wind or not. I also like the thought of having something a little heavier under the trailer but not if my speed averages out at 50mph and costs me half as again as much in fuel.

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Old 12-10-2018, 06:28 PM   #2 (permalink)
Center Pin
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The two basically have the same motor and trans, what's the weight difference between you current truck and the kodiak you are looking at?


Having melted a piston in a cummins previously, all my towing speeds now are determined by the EGT gauge. What I really like about towing with a 5500...


1) Not worried that a deer is going to come through the windshield when I hit one.
2) Having way more braking ability then I'll ever need.
3) Tonnes of space in the cab.

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Last edited by Center Pin; 12-10-2018 at 06:29 PM.
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Old 12-10-2018, 06:51 PM   #3 (permalink)
rdminter
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egt's will definitely be the deciding factor on how fast you go up a steep grade. Pulling 13k up a 6% grade will put my egts over 1400 at 60mph.
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Old 12-10-2018, 08:56 PM   #4 (permalink)
shawnmav
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Thanks for your input. The braking and extra weight for stability is about all anyone else I have talked to about them could tell me would be an advantage. GM kind of stayed the course throughout history even with 200x model years kodiak and topkicks where they add a few capacity or cooling enhancements but left everything else basically the same as found in the pickups in regards to the motors. Like the old farm trucks that had the same six or v8 gas motors basically in regards to HP and torque rating as the pickups but they geared them real deep and maybe put a two speed rear end in them. But they were not intended to be over the road trucks which I would guess these were also designed for with local work site or farm work in mind, not regularly pulling trailers across the country.

From what I have gathered from talking to others over a few days of asking around the next best alternative to what I already have would be a mid size single axle truck with like an N14 in it.....thanks again for the in put
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