I'm completely happy with my Diamondback HD. The tailgate seals quite well; I don't get any water in the bed--even at the car wash. It should be quite easy to drive with the back section open, since the gas springs can be easily disconnected, allowing the section to fold 180 degrees and lie flat. I would probably tie it down using a few of the cleats if I were traveling like that.
With my 2015 2500HD Duramax, I added DEF about as frequently as I changed the oil (once per 5000 miles). I had to add DEF on my 2020 3500HD for the first time at 3600 miles (down to 1 bar on the DEF gauge). I'm somewhat disappointed about the increased DEF usage....
I have a 31' camper and I tow with a ProPride (Jim Hensley design) hitch, which adds a few extra feet between my truck and trailer. I was worried that my rig might not be suitable for the transparent trailer view. With fingers crossed, I permanently mounted the camera and hid the cable on the interior of the trailer. I measured the 7 dimensions required in the setup menu and then started driving while it calibrated. It kept calibrating...and calibrating...and calibrating.... I eventually gave up and drove home. About 20 minutes (maybe 15 miles?) of city and freeway driving, I got the "calibration successful" message. The transparent trailer view works! When we get back from Spring Break, I'll make a proper post about my installation, setup and practical experience.
I recently upgraded from a 2015 GMC Sierra 2500HD Duramax Denali to a 2020 GMC Sierra 3500HD Duramax AT4. Both were equipped with the standard (i.e. short) box size. Overall, the 2020 is a better truck, but there are a few regressions. Notably, I miss the adjustable floor pedals and the quick-release tilt wheel. With a longer wheelbase and sharper turning angles, the new one handles quite a bit differently in tight spaces. But the benefits far outweigh the negatives. The new mirrors are phenomenal, both side mirrors and the rearview camera “mirror”. There are absolutely no blind spots on this behemoth. The built-in cameras (plus the additional trailer-mounted one) really aid when towing large trailers. The integrated trailer tire pressure monitors are easy to setup and seamlessly integrate into the truck’s electronics. The new engine/transmission combo is light years ahead of my 2015’s drivetrain. I see some guys complaining that the 10-speed likes to switch gears too frequently (especially when towing), but I haven’t had that experience. The new transmission shifts much more smoothly (perhaps because gear ratios are closer together?) so I’m rarely aware of the shifts. The really low first gear (only available in tow-haul mode) is really nice when pulling a heavy trailer from stop; I can drag my RV out of the gravel with far less “jerking”. One thing I really like about the new ones is something I haven’t really heard much chatter on: The steering wheel is now centered with the driver seat and the 2 armrests sit pretty much at the same height. I find that this makes for a much more comfortable driving experience, especially when sitting for a few hours. And, finally, the kids have a lot more legroom in the back seat of the much-longer crew cab.
Hi Wayne I'm anxious to see how you get this to work on your camper. I have a 31' Airstream with a ProPride hitch, so I'm close to the 10m limit. Like you, I'm heading to Europe for the week. I hope to figure out how to setup the camera settings when I get back next weekend....
I have recently moved from a 2015 2500HD to a 2020 3500HD, with both trucks being crew cab, standard (i.e. short) box models. While the 2020 is obviously larger in every dimension, I am not finding the overall length to be the most noticeable differentiator. The longer wheelbase plus the sharper turning capability of the front wheels are the biggest differences in how the 2020 handles much more differently than my 2015. I wouldn’t say either one is better or worse than the other, it just took me a bit of time to make the adjustment. For a period of time I was occasionally driving each, and I had a bit of challenge in tight spaces—simply because my muscle memory wasn’t synchronized with the 2 respective vehicles. Now that I’m driving the 2020 exclusively, I find it no more difficult to park in tight spaces than I did with my 2007 1500. In any case, I do try to park away from other vehicles simply because I’m not wanting door dings in my brand new baby.
Yes, I like the speaker system. It’s great to be able to listen to music when we’re sitting out by the truck (kids’ soccer practice, while sitting by the camper, tailgating, etc.). Is it worth the price? Considering I’ve dropped about $80k on this truck, it’s only a small part of my investment. We’ve actually used it quite a bit, so for us it has been worth doing. I have a 31’ travel trailer that we use as much as possible, and I’m challenged to find a half-ton truck (with enough space) that can tow it while keeping within payload and axle capacities. Therefore, I have this so-called “behemoth”. With my previous 2500HD, I was exceeding payload capacity when fully loaded with trailer, family, and gear, so I opted for the 3500HD this time around. I cannot really justify owning a vehicle for just the purpose of towing my RV, so it’s also my daily driver. I’m probably not taking this thing off road all that often (who would? It’s more than 20’ long and weights nearly 4 tons!), so I bought it for the looks—I’m not a big fan of the chromed-out Denali trim.
Hi XY74 I have a question on your particular install. I see the camera cable comes out the top and then hooks around to go under your trailer. Was this an intentional choice, were there any other mounting geometries that would work for your install?
Please help me understand this comment that I bolded. The rear end is only 1 part of the equation; the ratios of transmission gears are equally important here. This is easy to see when plotting gear ratio vs. final drive ratio for each model. I can understand why the truck might shift more often (i.e. there are more finite choices with the 10-speed), but this doesn't affect where you'll be when towing on the highway (i.e. at or near overdrive gears).
The OEM mats that came with my AT4 cover essentially 100% of the carpeted interior of my truck--even under the accelerator pedal! I have only the small, carpeted default storage box under the rear seat, and my mats cover everything.
For my 3500HD, I had to drill only 2 holes (unlike the 4 in the Youtube video). The automotive industry has made great strides in corrosion resistance over the last 20 years; I am not worried. The installation took me about an hour...with the most difficult step being the blind installation of the amplifier mounting bracket. The parts shop at my dealer says they get 2 hours labor for this installation.
I have the GM Kicker MultiPro Tailgate speaker system. It took me about an hour to install. It has a clean look and actually works quite well. Is it worth it? Hard to say....the sound is very tinny, so all you audiophiles out there should stay away. However, we find it to be quite useful when hanging out near the truck when camping, at the kids’ soccer games, etc.
I just installed a Diamondback HD Cover on my AT4 HD. I’ve always had color-matched caps and covers, so I was a bit tentative with how this might look. Overall, I think it works well with the black trim on the AT4.
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