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Out of curiousity, I started wondering how the 4.3 in the 2014-2018 Silverado/Sierra reacts to towing. When I did a quick online search, I couldn’t really find too much. I was wondering if anyone reading this could share their experiences. (If so, please list cabs configuration, if the truck has 4WD, axle ratios of your truck, trailer specs, steepness, and temperatures)

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Out of curiousity, I started wondering how the 4.3 in the 2014-2018 Silverado/Sierra reacts to towing. When I did a quick online search, I couldn’t really find too much. I was wondering if anyone reading this could share their experiences. (If so, please list cabs configuration, if the truck has 4WD, axle ratios of your truck, trailer specs, steepness, and temperatures)
Donstar might give you some info that you are looking for as I believe he tows with his v6.

Most of us, I don't believe, buy that combination if we plan to tow on a regular basis.

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I think it will tow anything better than a corolla but worse than a dmax

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If you were happy with the GMT900 4.8 or 5.3 V8's & 4L80 you will never notice the difference. 

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What are you trying to tow with the truck? What kind of hitch?

The broad question of "how does it tow" is hard to answer.

I don't have the spec sheet anymore for all the combinations but the 2WD double cab with 6.5' bed, 6.2 V8, and the max tow package had the highest listed towing capacity. It was 11,600 lbs or there about. It's safe to assume there is a decent margin of safety in there. All commercial products have margin.

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I've towed with it only a few times, but I'll give some feedback.  

 

I helped a friend move about 30 miles towing a full 12' uhaul and carrying his bed and some crap in the truck.  

With high hopes, due to the 305 lb ft that this motor has, I set out in hilly stop and go traffic.  

The truck has "adequate" to anemic power.  The tranny got up to an unsettling 221 degrees and it was only about a 50 minute drive.  It felt labored and strained.  The Chev is about 5300lbs, 3.42 gears, 4x4, 4.3, 2017, stock.

 

For the sake of comparison, my last truck was a Nissan Frontier 4.0 4x4.  It had 3.13 gears, 33 inch mud terrains that were north of 70lbs at each corner, and about 800lbs of off road armor.  (Unloaded at the scales it was about 5150lbs).  

When I moved with this truck, I traveled a greater distance, had a full, heavy load in the bed, a passenger, a much more packed 12' Uhaul trailer, drove it hard, and the Nissan didn't feel labored.  The engine felt like it could've taken another 2000lbs.  

 

This comparison isn't completely fair, because the Nissan engine was tuned with a Superchips Cortex for 87 octane, but it does give perspective.  

Maybe when this beast is out of warranty, I'll tune it and see if improvements become apparent.  

 

Tomorrow the Chev is towing about 1300lbs, should be easy, I'll report what happens

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I have a ccsb with 3.42s I've towed my wife's grand am on a dolly with no issues in the past. I also have a 3500lb travel trailer. Does ok. Rpms around 2400. Mpg blows but it does okay

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As mentioned above, I tow with the 4.3.  I have a CC 4X4 standard bed and 3.42.  My truck is rated to pull 7k lbs and my trailer has a GVWR of 7k lbs.  If you stay within the specifications of your truck (including payload) and use a proper hitch system, you will have a good towing experience.  Of course, this applies to all engine sizes.  My experiences pulling my TT have all been positive.  I've driven through mountainous terrain and heavy freeway traffic.  Gas mileage is impacted when towing with the V6 or the V8.  Speeding with a sail behind you is the biggest culprit for sucking gas. Driving between 55 -60 mph keeps my mpg's well in the double digits.  The Ecotec 4.3 V6 is a very strong and capable engine.  The fact that more powerful engines are available does not negate this fact.

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I would say the V6 will tow up to 4500 lbs comfortably. It will be labored for sure with that load but manageable. 

 

I have towed my 3500 lb enclosed 7x14 V nose trailer with both my 1997 5.7 4x4 3:73 33" 4l60e 4-speed and 2018 6.2 4x4 3:42 33" 8l90 8-speed.

 

Yes the newer truck has more power but the biggest difference is the transmissions. The gear spacing in the 6-speed and 8-speed is a HUGE improvement for towing compared to a 4-speed auto. With the 4-speed auto you are either screaming in 2nd at 55 - 65 mph or slowing down in 3rd requiring a downshift. 

 

Transmission temps are normal up to 260? degrees in the newer 6 and 8 speed transmissions. Remember there is a thermostat that keeps the trans cooler shut off until 200 degrees. 240 and up on older transmissions was too hot and usually guaranteed short transmission life.

 

V6 4.3 Ecotec 285hp @ 5300 | 305tq @ 3500

 

V8 5.3 Ecotec 355hp @ 5600 | 382tq @ 4100

 

V8 6.2 Ecotec 420hp @ 5600 | 460tq @ 4100

 

_______________________________________________

 

V8 5.3 Vortec 320hp @ 5400 | 335tq @ 4000 (GMT900 Generation 2007.5 - 2013)

 

V8 5.7 Vortec 255hp @ 4600 | 330tq @ 2800 (GMT400 1995.5 - 1998.5)

Edited by 2009GMC

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Yesterday I towed 1300lbs and the truck performed really well.  It felt like it had plenty of power on tap.  

 

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On ‎2019‎-‎01‎-‎08 at 8:38 PM, Appleboy84 said:

Out of curiousity, I started wondering how the 4.3 in the 2014-2018 Silverado/Sierra reacts to towing. 

What are you thinking of towing?  I was asking a similar question to yours a year or so back when I was considering a Travel Trailer.  

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Sorry for the lack of replies, I wasn’t getting email notifications and forgot about this thread. Thanks for the replies by the way.

 

My current truck is a 2013 Silverado EC 2WD 5.3 with a factory trailering package. I actually am not really in the market for anoher truck. I’m more just interested on the towing performance of the 4.3. Though, I sometimes like to look around at what’s on the lots. If I were to actually find something, I would likely get a 5.3, but I would like to look at 4.3s for the fuel economy and the 4.3 trucks appear to have more towing capacity than I’ll ever need so I shouldn’t be towing near or at the capacity. I would still want the 3.42 axle ratio regardless the engine.

 

The only thing I tow is a 21’ travel trailer (3430 Ibs dry weight and 3950 GVWR) a few times a year. My current truck has the factory hitch that was installed with the trailering package and I use a weight carrying Curt ball mount and ball combination that has a 2” ball (I’m still kinda new to trailering so I don’t know if I am using the right terminology).

Edited by Appleboy84

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These engines are great for fuel economy.  I cut off the majority of the front air dam and it still gets 20mpg consistently.

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Moving from a previous generation 5.3 to a newer 4.3 will not give you a noticeable change in performance. I went from a Vortec 5.3 CC with a 3.42 to the same configuration with the 4.3.  The "pro" for me was cost and the "con" was sound.   (I miss the stock idle sound of the V8!)   You would also notice improved fuel economy with the newer Ecotec 5.3 engines along with increased power.    You will probably find more favourable pricing on the less popular V6 which may or may not be your concern.  I purchased my current truck based on my satisfaction with my '09 5.3.  If your current truck meets and/or exceeds your power needs then definitely don't pass on a good deal on an Ecotec V6.   

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My friend has a 4.3L 2wd Silverado that he tows his race car in an enclosed trailer with. He scaled it once and it was roughly 7,600lbs fully loaded. I'm amazed at how well it tows and the race track is about 1.5hrs away so it's not a short drive. He was going to change the gearing but ultimately decided to just use it as is because it worked so well.

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