1996 GMC Sierra Review

1996 GMC Sierra 3500 SX 6.5L turbo diesel from North America

Model year1996
Year of manufacture1996
First year of ownership2001
Most recent year of ownership2006
Engine and transmission 6.5L turbo diesel Automatic
Performance marks 8 / 10
Reliability marks 2 / 10
Comfort marks 8 / 10
Dealer Service marks 6 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 3 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
5.4 / 10
Distance when acquired120000 kilometres
Most recent distance218000 kilometres
Previous carChevrolet Lumina




- 4 injection pumps

- transmission ($3k or so to fix)

- power steering pump

- various front end components (ball joint, steering linkage)

- front brake cylinder

- transfer case 4wd sending switch

- front hub 4wd engagement solenoid.

General Comments:

This is a beautiful looking truck. It's a 1 ton crew cab with all the options. Very nice to drive, very smooth for a 1 ton. However, it eats parts and $$ like there's no tomorrow. I'm never going to own another vehicle that is newer than 1992.

The electronic injection pump on this truck failed 3 times in 100,000km. Luckily it was under an extended warranty until 190,000kms. The last one only made it about 12,000kms.

The 4l80e transmission is supposed to be good, but I guess by "good" they mean expensive and manages to make it 180,000kms. Not good in my book.

If it was just a few things it wouldn't be too bad, but every time I touch the thing something fails. I'm afraid to drive it!

In short I'm very unimpressed. We also have a Toyota Corolla with 390,000kms on it that has had 1/10th the amount of work done to it.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 17th October, 2006

1st Jun 2009, 01:59

Well the 6.5 liter engine was probably the worst engine GM put out. Or the worst diesel engine in general. I own a 1998 Dodge Ram 2500 with a Cummins turbo diesel. This truck has just rolled 400k and still runs as good as new. And I work the heck out of it, but maintain it religiously as you should with any vehicle.

I have a friend who once owned a 1995 Ram Cummins that had over 700k on the original motor, and still ran great. If you want a real diesel truck, then you definitely can't go wrong with a Cummins.

Average review marks: 5.4 / 10, based on 1 review