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6.5L Turbo Diesel 1992-00 6.5L Turbo Diesel - Welcome to the Internet's first discussion forum for the 6.5L diesel engine. Tips on performance, upgrades, cooling, fuel economy, troubleshooting and more.

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  #1  
Old 10-04-2019, 09:14 PM
topher84 topher84 is offline
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Default Need help deciding: first time 6.5 purchase.

Hello all. I am brand new to this site, but have been looking into 6.5’s for a while now. I just came across this forum tonight and thought that, since I have made up my mind to buy one, I would look to the experts for some advice. I have read all the stickies. I am trying to decide between 2 specific 2500 suburbans that will be long distance/overland trucks for my family outings. They will not be daily drivers. They will see moderately rough trails regularly, but will not be rock crawlers. The truck will tow our Offroad camper (roughly 2000lbs) and will occasionally see other countries.

One suburban is a 97’ with only 107k miles, is white, has some surface rust on the frame but the body looks clean, and everything looks stock. Unfortunately It is a state away, i haven’t seen it up close, it is at a dealership and it’s history is fuzzy, and they are asking $7k for it.
Oh and it’s white (not a big fan)

The other one is a 94’ with 207k, it has minor surface rust on frame, and bubbling just below the fuel cap. It is nearby, It is owned by the son of the original owner, had a new engine put in 40k miles ago (short block), runs drives, shifts, and brakes flawlessly, and is asking $3500. Its blue which I really like but it had a maaco paint job a couple years ago (same colors as original.) this was used to tow a 6k lb boat to lake mead from salt lake once or twice a summer and that was it apparently. It looks to be all stock except for a PMD relocate.

I’m a bit more drawn to the 94 because it seems simpler (manual 4x4 shift, OBD1, etc) and it will give me more money left over for upgrading/bulletproofing, but the mileage on that 97 makes all the unknowns seem less scary...

Thanks in advance for your thoughts!
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Old 10-05-2019, 07:46 AM
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JohnC JohnC is offline
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Just shooting form the hip, but I think I'd go for the one with the new engine. At least it's close by and you can look at it and touch it, and it's half the price. (And it sounds like you prefer the color, too).

Either one is still a 20+ year old vehicle and there's nothing you can do about it. If it was well maintained (it had to have been fairly well maintained to get this far!) then the mileage is less of a concern.

If the engine was truly "new" then it has the latest, greatest block. (The '94 has the original 6.5, which isn't a bad choice, either, but it is 20+ years old and has 107k...)

Hopefully, others will chime in with more recent experiences; the last 6.5 I owned was a '95 and that was 13 years ago!
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Last edited by JohnC; 10-05-2019 at 09:09 AM.
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Old 10-05-2019, 08:13 AM
ronniejoe ronniejoe is offline
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For me, I much prefer the interiors on the 95+ trucks. The 97 should have the upgraded cooling system which is much better all around, but will have the large OD piston oil nozzles which are contributory to main web cracking.

The 94 has the new style, better looking grill (in my opinion), but has the old interior.

I had a 95 Diesel Suburban from 2000 until it was totaled in 2015 (actually still have it sitting out back) and I loved it. Best all-around vehicle that I've ever owned.
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Old 10-05-2019, 04:51 PM
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Robyn Robyn is offline
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I agree with Ron about the body style (Interior) Buttttttttttttttttt...a fresh engine is a real plus.

I have had 94's and 95's

The interiors on the later trucks are nice...

Tough call...
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Old 10-05-2019, 05:55 PM
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I agree. I had both a '93 and a '95. The '95 was better looking and had a more modern interior. The '93 (mechanical injection and manual trans) was bullet proof, but not collision proof... Stopped a minivan with the left front quarter.
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"Greed" (formerly meant what "need" means today) - wanting to keep your own.
"Compassion" - a politician's willingness to arrange the transfer.
-Joseph Sobran

Current oil burners: MB 350SDL, Kubota 7510
Gone but not forgotten: '87 F350 7.3, '93 C2500 6.5, '95 K2500 6.5, '06 K2500HD 6.6
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Old 10-06-2019, 02:25 PM
topher84 topher84 is offline
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Default Thank you

great feedback, thank you! I agree that the interiors on the 94’s are not as nice, and that’s a big factor, but I think they are easy enough to upgrade to make comfy for a long trip. I’m going to go try and meet with the owner today. Thanks again guys.
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Old 10-07-2019, 02:50 AM
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trbankii trbankii is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by topher84 View Post
I agree that the interiors on the 94’s are not as nice, and that’s a big factor, but I think they are easy enough to upgrade to make comfy for a long trip.
I swapped some later model seats into my '94 Yukon and that improved things greatly: https://www.thedieselpageforums.com/...9&postcount=82

Of my '93 (mechanical) and '94 (electronic), I've had more issues with the '94 in a lot fewer years of ownership.
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