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Old 12-15-2008, 11:17 AM   #1
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Smile V6 vs. small V8...mpg and towing....

Alright..So here's the question from the newbie...Probably been answered/debated before(but didn't find any thread doing search)...
I am looking at buying a truck again...I have narrowed it down to
two used 2006 STX's....One is a 4.2L V6(auto), the other is a 4.6L-V8(auto, 4x4)....Here is the question...Is the gas mileage gonna "actually" be that much different btwn the two? I am gonna be using either truck to pull at most a 6x12 trailer with 3 atv's...Of course, I will use at other times as well, but this will be it's main purpose in life...I have a 93 celica that gets 30MPG that I use as my daily commuter...I was just wondering if the gas savings(as we all know it will be back to $3 a gallon, sooner rather than later) is enough to decide which truck to buy...Also, will the V8 be much and/or any better at pulling the load(s)? Of course, the V6 is about 3000 bucks cheaper...Any info would be greatly appreciated...Thanks..
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Old 12-15-2008, 11:35 AM   #2
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As someone who has had both, I can say that the mileage in the V6 is quite a bit better than the V8, Although the V6 I had was a 99 and the V8 I have now is an 05. If you're towing 3 atv's I would go with the V8, they're not that heavy but when I would tow trailers with my v6, even with lighter loads it had a lot of trouble and gas mileage was less than when hauling with my v8, the v6 has better mileage on the road but it has to work extremely hard when towing and that makes it get worse mileage, at least thats my experience.
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Old 12-15-2008, 11:44 AM   #3
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Being around both as my dad has the v6 and i have the v8 his truck is much better on gas. I have pulled 3 atvs with my truck and my dads and the v8 is much better. But it is a little hard on gas while doing so. It just feels nicer pulling as its not working as hard as the v6.
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Old 12-15-2008, 12:09 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by stevezf150 View Post
Being around both as my dad has the v6 and i have the v8 his truck is much better on gas. I have pulled 3 atvs with my truck and my dads and the v8 is much better. But it is a little hard on gas while doing so. It just feels nicer pulling as its not working as hard as the v6.
If I was just 80% of the time pulling one atv with a 5x8 trailer would it be any big deal? I guess what I am saying is I am really leaning towards the V6(siince most of the time it is just my bike I am pulling) and wondering if I am gonna be totally disappointed when I try and pull my bike(s)...I'm not a big gear head and/or speed junkie, I just wanna know I am not gonna kill my tranny if I get the V6? Thanks for the replies so far..Keep 'em coming...I am planning on making this purchase this week, so the more the merrier...
Just an FYI...I am planning on putting a fiberglass camper shell on either truck as well.....
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Old 12-15-2008, 12:30 PM   #5
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You can get away with what you're doing with the V6 it should not hurt the tranny, however, the V8 will pull better, the rpms will be lower and you will probably get better mileage while towing with the V8. Overall I think the 8 would be a wiser investment anyways, you never know when you might need the extra power and towing capacity of a V8. I was in a similar situation as you when I bought my V6 after a couple years I decided that the v8 would be a better choice. I then moved up to a 4x4 V8 which I have now. Im just saying, when it comes to trucks its probably better to buy more power than you think you need, you never know when you might need it.
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Old 12-15-2008, 02:31 PM   #6
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You can get away with what you're doing with the V6 it should not hurt the tranny, however, the V8 will pull better, the rpms will be lower and you will probably get better mileage while towing with the V8. Overall I think the 8 would be a wiser investment anyways, you never know when you might need the extra power and towing capacity of a V8. I was in a similar situation as you when I bought my V6 after a couple years I decided that the v8 would be a better choice. I then moved up to a 4x4 V8 which I have now. Im just saying, when it comes to trucks its probably better to buy more power than you think you need, you never know when you might need it.
I hate to ask, but what kind of mileage do you get with the V8 4x4? towing and normal....And what year is it? Thanks
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Old 12-15-2008, 04:59 PM   #7
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I have a 2005 STX with the 4.2 liter V6. I hauled my Harley from Texas to Orlando about a week ago on a U-Haul trailer, along with my Craftman 3 tier tool boxes, several boxes in the bed, and not once during the thousand plus mile trip did the truck engine or tranny burp. During some hilly highway driving (east Texas), I flipped off the overdrive, but you'd do that too with the V8. I averaged about 18 miles per gallon as well.

The truck had 75K on it when the trip was made. I am a firm believer in that 4.2 liter. I see that Ford is dropping this engine for the 2009 lineup, as they state the 4.6 liter V8 gets the same mileage as the 4.2 did (Ford claims). I'll believe them.
Towing a couple of jet ski's on a trailer won't even make that 4.2 breathe hard. If you go with the 4.2, don't worry about it, and when you're not hauling them, you'll get better mileage then the current V8's.
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Old 12-15-2008, 05:12 PM   #8
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I recently switched from a Jeep V6 3.7 to a V8 F150 simply because it towed SO MUCH better. All the trucks come with a tow mode, that knocks out the Overdrive and normally I use it. This does knock off about 5 mpg.....
Personally I would never purchase a V6 in a "truck" that I plan to use as a truck.... Use the Celica for MPG... I would push for the V8.... but it's the kinda guy I am!!
Good luck and let us k now what you decide.
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Old 10-21-2011, 02:05 PM   #9
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I have a 2005 Ford F-150 with the 4.2L,6cyl.engine. It is an automatic. The rear end gear ratio is either 355 or 373. It came with a tow package that included a tranny cooler and a reese hitch. I bought it used so I dont know about the suspension. The GVRW IS 6650. The manual states the towing capacity is either 5000lbs. or 5600lbs. depending on the rear end. What I need to know is, what weight is practical for me to tow. I am buying a camper. I have been on forums that say the weights in the manual are not realistic. I dont want to shorten the life of my truck. I currently have 44,000 mi. on it. I am retired and would like to have this truck last. Can someone help me clear up this confusion? My wife and I will be going out this weekend looking at campers, so I need this info soon . Hope to hear from someone with the knowledge to clear this up for me. Thanks
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Old 10-21-2011, 02:39 PM   #10
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im pretty sure if you have the towing package you have the 3.73 gearing. i think if you look in the glove box there is a code in there that will tell you what gearing you have.

b9 is the 3.55
b6 is the 3.73
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