Average Fuel Economy of Duramax Diesel Engine Trucks

Updated

The Duramax diesel engine is predominately found in GMC trucks. It was introduced in 2001 and has gone through many updates. The current version (2017+) is a 6.6L turbo-diesel V8 which has some of the best torque and horsepower you could ever want in a diesel engine.

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There is also a smaller 2.8 liter version of the Duramax diesel turbo-diesel engine that can be found on 2016+ Chevy Colorado and GMC Canyon midsize pickups.

Rather than the 910 pound-foot of torque found with the 6.6L engine, the 2.8L 4-Cylinder Turbodiesel offers 369 pound-foot of torque. However, both give users great gas mileage as well as the power you would expect from a diesel engine.

Duramax engine fuel economy

Duramax MPG for 5 Most Common Trucks

When people shop around for trucks of any size, in addition to torque and towing capacity, they likely want to know the miles per gallon that they’ll get out of it. Duramax diesel engines are made to enhance fuel efficiency so that you get the most miles per gallon out of your truck that is possible.

Below are 5 common vehicles which have a Duramax diesel engine in them. Because manufacturer based MPG numbers are usually unrealistic, the fuel mileages shown below are taken from hundreds of actual owners of the vehicles themselves, millions of miles driven, and actually putting the trucks through typical days of work (courtesy of Fuelly.com).

Note: Obviously, the actual fuel economy achieved is based on many factors (speed, driving style, weight, towing, etc.) so your results may vary but this should give you a good idea of “real-world” usage.

#1 – Chevrolet Silverado 2500HD

Chevy Silverado 2500HD Duramax Diesel

YearAverage Miles Per GallonYearAverage Miles Per Gallon
200115.4 MPG200215.0 MPG
200314.9 MPG200414.3 MPG
200513.9 MPG200614.3 MPG
200714.6 MPG200814.5 MPG
200913.4 MPG201014.7 MPG
201113.7 MPG201213.3 MPG
201314.9 MPG201414.3 MPG
201514.2 MPG201614.3 MPG
201714.3 MPG201813.8 MPG
201914.5 MPG202013.1 MPG

#2 – GMC Sierra 2500HD

GMC Sierra 2500HD Duramax Diesel

YearAverage Miles Per GallonYearAverage Miles Per Gallon
200114.2 MPG200215.0 MPG
200315.2 MPG200415.5 MPG
200513.6 MPG200614.7 MPG
200714.3 MPG200814.4 MPG
200914.6 MPG201015.0 MPG
201113.9 MPG201213.7 MPG
201313.4 MPG201413.7 MPG
201513.9 MPG201614.4 MPG
201714.2 MPG201815.3 MPG
201914.4 MPG202014.9 MPG

#3 – GMC Sierra 3500HD

GMC Sierra 3500HD Duramax Diesel

YearAverage Miles Per GallonYearAverage Miles Per Gallon
200713.6 MPG200813.3 MPG
200915.1 MPG201013.2 MPG
201113.7 MPG201213.3 MPG
201312.5 MPG201412.2 MPG
201514.3 MPG201612.6 MPG
201713.3 MPG201811.8 MPG
201911.2 MPG202013.8 MPG

#4 – Chevrolet Colorado

Chevy Colorado Duramax Diesel

YearAverage Miles Per GallonYearAverage Miles Per Gallon
201623.8 MPG201723.6 MPG
201822.7 MPG201922.3 MPG
202020.1 MPG

#5 – GMC Canyon

GMC Canyon Duramax Diesel

YearAverage Miles Per GallonYearAverage Miles Per Gallon
201624.0 MPG201724.3 MPG
201824.8 MPG201922.0 MPG
202024.5 MPG

General Motors owns the brand and rights to the Duramax diesel engine. The company currently has a joint venture with the Japanese motor company called Isuzu. This joint venture is referred to as DMAX, which is the manufacturer of Duramax diesel engines.

The engine became popular after they were first installed in the 2001 GMC and Chevrolet trucks. Ever since then, GMC has given people the option to have a Duramax diesel engine in all the medium-sized trucks, vans, and pickup trucks that they sell. If you come across this option, be sure to take it.

 

Comments

  1. While driving in the right most lane on level highway at 65 miles per hour I can pull 24 mpg with the Duramax diesel 6.6L in my Silverado 2500HD truck.

    Reply
  2. I was hoping somebody had tried success getting better mileage. I’m picking up a 2008 with 220k on it this week. If you don’t mind my asking, what year is your truck, Jim?

    Reply
  3. The results above are based on “real-world” scenarios of thousands of drivers so there’s no way to know but I’d assume most are running their trucks stock or close to it.

    Reply
  4. 2019 duramax crewcab srw getting 24mpg hwy, level road 65mph Standard factorry equipment? Encouraging to know if that is true. Can changing filters, exhaust or anything else increase mpg?

    Reply
    • So much of MPG is based on driving style but yes, I do believe you can increase mileage from a better intake, a more free-flowing exhaust (sometimes), or custom fuel mapping. If someone really wanted to, I bet they could get close to 30 MPG with a Duramax.

      Reply
  5. I have a GMC Sierra SLE 2007 3/4 ton (2500)LBZ 6.6 Duramax with a 6 speed Allison Transmission. Pulling a huge load at 50mph in 4 gear I get about 10 mpg. Pulling a medium load in 5th gear at 62mph I get about 14mpg. Empty on the highway driving 63mph I get about 20mpg. Empty at 70mph I get about 18mpg. I have 235K on the engine. It still runs great! The size of the load and amount of wind can and will make a difference. Change oil & filter every 7500 with Valvoline Blue Extreme. Change the transmission filters, fluid and the pumpkins every 100K with Amzoil synthetic recommended viscosity’s. Rocker panels are starting to rust. ($5K to repair at the bodyshop) I was in the dealership today to price out a new one, about $60K for a GMC Sierra SLE no leather crewcab and a long bed. Thinking about it or just purchasing another used GMC duramax. I don’t think I would ever go back to a gas engine, I love the power of the diesel!

    Reply
      • …Should consider slowing down to around 65 mph. I have a 2018 GMC Sierra Denali loaded with the 6.6 Duramax diesel with 13,000 miles on it and I’m averaging 22.4 mpg (when using the cruise control and not towing anything). Will see whaI I average when towing my 9,000 lb 5th wheel camper. i think I’ll still be happy with my baby.

        Reply
        • Curious what the results are with the camper. I have a travel trailer and looking at moving from a tundra to the 2500 Duramax. Getting 6.8@ 65mph now in the Tundra.

    • Hello all, I have a 02 hd2500 4×4 long box crew with the duramax. I purchased back in 02 used with 30k miles. I love this truck, I have 230k and it just went to shop yesterday for first issue. It is smoking blowing unburdened fuel out exhaust. I was getting 19mph when empty and never below 16 on a normal pull. If you keep it under 72mph. Now around 16 to 14. Time for surgery, lol. Was told 3,500 to 4,500 for full injection rebuild. Will see.

      Reply
  6. We have a 2002 GMC Duramax, now with 880,000 miles. Three times dealerships and transmission shops condemned the transmission, and 3 times we found they were incorrect. We have changed injectors on the engine once, and cleaned them twice. Our diesel mechanic recommends we dump a half quart of transmission fluid into the fuel at every fill up to help keep the injectors clean.

    Reply
  7. I have a 2015 2500HD LTZ Double Cab. I hate the Double Cab. On my meter of the last 50 miles I have a best of 27.5. Pulling my trailer I would get 10 to 12. I never topped a hill under 60 MPH. My truck doesn’t like the cold weather. It drops to 13 to 17 around town and even trips of 200 miles. I have 62000 miles on the truck.

    Reply
  8. Curious what the results are with the camper. I have a travel trailer and looking at moving from a tundra to the 2500 Duramax. Getting 6.8@ 65mph now in the Tundra.

    Reply
    • I had a 2004 Chevy Duramax and got about 19 empty over the road. I also had a 2012 GMC Duramax. I hauled an 8500 lb 5th wheel from San Antonio to Grand Canyon Through Utah to Yellowstone to the Black Hills And back to TX. 6000 miles. Got an average of 11 mpg. Getting ready to buy another GMC Duramax. To me there is no other choice. I really didn’t feel the trailer behind me at anytime through the mountains etc. Hardly ever got above 1700 rpm. Hope that helps.

      Reply
  9. I have a 2020 Denali 3500 Duramax with a new 10 speed Allison love it empty I get 21 to 23 pulling on 16,000 pound fifth wheel I’m getting anywhere from 12 1/2 to 9 1/2 depending on the hills and train

    Reply
  10. I have a 2017 Chevy Colorado 2.8 L. had for 3 years now and live in Chicago, been driving highway and city going to work everyday, and I average 25.9 on both city and highway miles… I dont know if the cold air intake is why but I get great gas mileage.

    Reply

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