PickupTruck.com Heavy Duty Shootout, Part 2 of 3
By: Mike Levine, Kent Sundling, and
Neil McGarry Posted:
07-02-07 02:01 PT
© 2007 PickupTruck.com
2:    
  
[Diesel v Gas Comparison]
the Drag Strip
green light drops, the blah blah blah stops.
few automotive experiences that get your heart rate up
or your hands sweating faster than rolling up to the starting
block for the first run of the day at a drag strip. (Sitting next a
six-foot tall brunette model inside the cabin of a Ferrari 599 GTB
Fiorano 6.0-liter V12 at the North American International Auto Show
is about the only thing we can think of.)
pulse surged even faster when we realized it wasn't just
our selfish pride that was at stake drag racing the guy in the
lane next to us - there was also skin in the game for the OEMs
who'd just loaned us the seven heavy duty pickups we'd be
against each other.
ask, what's the point of running heavy duty pickups through the 1/4-mile?
Isn't the job of a three-quarter or one-ton rig to simply deliver
a heavy load or haul a trailer from point A to point B? You'd be absolutely
correct except for one circumstance where the 1/4-mile test almost
always comes in as a handy measurement - getting on the freeway.
we performed represent a reasonable scenario for those drivers interested
in learning how quickly they can accelerate up to 60-mph plus to join
the flow of traffic on a freeway, without holding other drivers up
behind them or causing an unsafe situation in a slow moving vehicle
towing a trailer.
As we mentioned
in Part 1, we rented
the asphalt at Milan Dragway, just
outside Detroit. The track features an IHRA sanctioned 1/4-mile dragstrip.
It's perfect for determining time and speed performance over a fixed
distance, unloaded and loaded.
set out to test all seven trucks at Milan, but due to time restrictions
and the number of runs required for the trucks, only the one-ton diesel
trucks were completed at Milan, plus the F-450 uninstrumented. We
ran and completed testing all the three-quarter-ton gassers the next
day at Ford's
Michigan Proving Grounds (MPG).
runs at Milan were carried out at wide open throttle (WOT) in the normal
1/4-mile direction, using the right hand lane, starting from the regular
start line. Every run was initiated by following the staging and countdown
lights on the Christmas tree from a dead stop.
Milan a bit more interesting, we invited all the manufacturers to send
as many PR and engineering folks as they wanted to observe the testing
first-hand. Chrysler, General Motors, and Ford Motor Company all took
us up on that offer and had at least one person onsite during the races.
Some even took turns racing each other.
In the pictures
that accompany this story, you'll see the trucks racing each other.
However, Ricardo Inc. only collected metrics and data from
one truck at a time using an Oxford
Technical Solutions RT3102 - so how the trucks performed
head-to-head with each other wasn't necessarily indicative of the final
results you'll read about.
tests were conducted at Milan and MPG in 4 wheel drive (high range
mode) with tow-haul engaged when towing, and disabled when not towing.
A minimum of three runs was carried out in each configuration tested.
The fastest runs are presented in the results.
have time but an interesting
test would have been to have done these runs for three days, to see
how the adaptive computer programs would have changed acceleration
and shift points in the transmissions. Though under load, such as a
trailer, we may have been close to our top parameters.
Part 2: