No matter what you pay for this nice looking truck, be ready to spend $3-5000 for a transmission rebuild and at least $1000 for a rear axle rebuild. Brakes, tires, ..., are just accepted expenses for a used truck. Why would the guy have a transmission REBUILD done, then park the truck and sell it? It was probably a transmission SERVICE that found problems, like metal in the oil pan and a clogged filter. NCIB VinCheck and VinAudit are strongly recommended. Last year I bought a 2003 K2500HD with 165000 miles that had been used for towing a gooseneck car trailer. The drivetrain was in poor condition, with a new transfer case, so I had the 4L80 transmission done by a reputable shop for $3000, and did everything else myself. Now I have an older truck in great condition.
The encouraging thing is that the wiring doesn't route through a controller, but routes directly through a relay block to the mirror. So adding the auto dimming compass and thermometer mirror is possible. I had to take mine apart and resolder a couple of joints, so got to see inside it. The compass is internal and about all you need otherwise is the thermometer input (the air temperature sensor). I strongly suggest you use a stock wiring harness which plugs directly into the relay block. Good luck.
There are no problems with aftermarket touch screen radios in these trucks. I just put a Pioneer AVH-501EX ($185) double din DVD player in my 2003 truck using a PAC RP5-GM11 ($114) and eRapta ERT02 ($35) backup camera. There are a couple of good youtube videos you might want to watch. The AVH is a mid-range unit that has lots of IO and adaptability, like external video input and output, USB, Spotify, SiriusXM, ... My truck was abused and had a Walmart radio ($25!) that provided no door chimes or other truck information. That's the function of the PAC unit, to retain all truck related features of the entertainment system, chimes, steering wheel controls, ... Now the truck is working like it should with touch screen and all that. Sorry I can't add anything for you about the stock units.
GM big blocks are 70's technology with looser tolerances than new engines like the LS series. Loose engines don't seal as well, so they use more oil, that's about it. 300+ horsepower in a truck used to be amazing, now the LS begins at that rating, and they're derated from the factory. A lot of folks tow very successfully with the stock 6.0/4.10 combination. Add an aftermarket tune and the stock 6.0 will easily make 350 horsepower and 400 foot-pounds of torque. That should be plenty of power for civilian use. So what if it can't keep up with a Diesel dually full-time tow vehicle, the 6.0/4.10 is an all-around truck. It can tow or haul most of what folks need. Unrelated Diesel versus LS opinion: My nephew, and the guy I bought my 2500HD from, both swear by Diesels. They're "young" and want to tow at 70 or 80 mph whether it's safe, legal or whatever, no matter the cost. I almost bought a used F-250 SuperDuty 7.3. Took one look at the rebuild cost of a 7.3 and couldn't believe my eyes, ran down the street screaming LOL. One injector costs $600, and there are eight! Transmissions that sit behind Diesels are the same, very expensive to repair. Of course, you get what you pay for. Taken care of, a Diesel truck drivetrain will last 1,000,000 miles without a major repair. An LS-based truck probably won't get one-third that much use before a complete rebuild. But the average guy won't get near that much with his truck. If he does, he can rebuild the whole drivetrain for $5000 easy.
That truck looks odd. Those wheels and tires are badly mismatched to the truck. The fact that they didn't bother cleaning the bed says to me that the mechanicals haven't been checked out. The paint looks good, but "leather" seats and no carpet? No running boards? The steering wheel is trashed too. The headliner doesn't match and this is a base model. Don't believe the odometer, those are easily changed. I'd walk away, these trucks are very common. Nice 4x4 gas versions typically cost around $10,000. I got my 2003 K2500HD SLE 6.0 from a private party that bought a Diesel dually to replace it. Paid $4300, but it needed a lot of cleaning and several small items. Replaced a couple of the door lights, unstuck the gooseneck hitch, bought a set of used PY0 wheels to replace the black spokes and Swampers it came with, and bought new front inner fender panels because the Swampers damaged the originals. The engine is in great condition for 190 thousand miles and it has a new transfer case. I will be rebuilding the transmission. Good luck in your truck search.
Just remove the CATs and see how it works. You can always put them back if it makes no difference. CATs are restrictive, but not especially so on the street. Keep in mind that there are two O2 sensors on some of these trucks, my '03 has one before the CAT and one after the CAT. These are used by the computer to optimize the tune. Remove the CATs and you'll mess up that part of the tune. My guess is the truck will run poorly without the CATs.
If you drive hard, odds are the engine needs a rebuild. Put good parts in it and it may hold up for another 12 years. $2500 if you do it yourself with a good machine shop. Think about the transmission while you're at it. $1500 for a performance rebuild if you do it yourself.
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