Best Diesel Trucks for Sale in Canada
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10 Best Diesel Trucks for Sale in Canada

With the arrival of electrification and increasing emissions regulations, arguments for manufacturing diesel-powered engines from carmakers are running thin. Therefore the 2023 model-year will remove a large chunk of diesel-truck offerings from the Canadian market.

However, if you’re a fan of diesel propulsion for its obvious benefits – high-torque, durability, and fuel economy – then rest assured that it’s still possible to put your hands on some 2021 and 2022 models that are powered by a trusty, diesel-powered alternative. Here’s our 10 top picks for diesel-powered trucks in Canada.

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Jeep Wrangler EcoDiesel

Jeep Wrangle EcoDiesel | Photo: Jeep 

Who is this for? Adventure-seeking consumers looking for a Jeep that offers both enormous low-end torque and fantastic fuel economy.

Why we like it

  • All the benefits of a Jeep with the added brawn of diesel power
  • Considerably more fuel-efficient than the gasoline fed V6
  • Surprisingly smooth and quiet

Yes, we know: the Jeep Wrangler isn’t exactly a truck. It’s, well, a Jeep. But considering that it comes with the traditional truck-specifications, that is built on an actual frame, an engine that’s installed longitudinally and one that can mechanically lock its differentials, we felt the Wrangler deserved its spot on this list.

In EcoDiesel form, this is one heck of an interesting Wrangler. Power comes from a turbodiesel 3.0-liter V6 that’s good for 260 horsepower and a ground-shattering 442 lb-ft of torque. While its towing rating is the same as the 3.6-liter V6 at 3,500 pounds, the Wrangler EcoDiesel will return a solid 9.5L/100 km fuel consumption average according to Natural Resources Canada. You’ll also get open-top motoring as a bonus.

Jeep discontinued the Wrangler EcoDiesel for 2023. But 2022 examples are still scattered around the country for yours to grab.

Mercedes-Benz Sprinter Diesel

Mercedes-Benz Sprinter Diesel | Photo: Mercedes-Benz 

Who is this for? Consumers seeking a trusty cargo van for work, adventure, or leisure, but that also want the torque, the reliability, and the fuel-efficiency of a diesel engine.

Why we like it

  • A spacious and flexible cargo van with a lot of refinement
  • More than 1,000 possible configurations
  • Two horsepower and torque outputs are available for the diesel engine

Here’s another interesting diesel-powered truck that’s not exactly a truck. In this case, it’s the charming Mercedes-Benz Sprinter cargo van which can be ordered in a full plethora of available configurations. 

Cargo vans have been highly popular in recent years to the rising #vanlife lifestyle, essentially people selling their houses, cars and personal possessions to go live in a van. It’s become such a popular way of life that aftermarket startups that specialize in the conversion of livable transportation devices have exploded all over the world.

Realizing this fad, Mercedes-Benz has heavily updated its Sprinter cargo van for the 2023 model year. While it’s true that the old diesel-powered V6 is now a thing of the past, it’s been replaced by a powerhouse of diesel propulsion. This new unit is smaller, way more efficient and just as effective. At only two-litres of displacement, this inline four-cylinder can offer two different output figures. 

When equipped with the single turbo setup, it’s good for 168 horsepower and 295 lb-ft of torque. When adding a second turbocharger, Mercedes engineers were able to crank this tiny engine’s output to an impressive 208 horsepower and 332 lb-ft of torque.

Jeep Gladiator EcoDiesel

Jeep Gladiator EcoDiesel | Photo: Jeep 

Who is this for? Adventure-seeking consumers who love the Jeep Wrangler EcoDiesel, but that also need the capability of a pickup truck.

Why we like it:

  • Essentially a Jeep Wrangler with a bed
  • Class-competitive towing rating
  • More torque than all its rivals

Here’s a bit of good news for diesel enthusiasts: unlike the Jeep Wrangler, which loses its EcoDiesel engine for the 2023 model year, the Gladiator will soldier on by still offering it. Weren’t not exactly sure how long this drivetrain option will be offered under the hood of Jeep’s Wrangler-derived midsize truck, but it’s worth considering on your list.

In diesel form, the Gladiator cranks out the same 260 horsepower and 442-lb-ft of torque than the SUV on which it's based. This allows it to be the midsize truck that offers the most amount of torque in the segment. It’s also a towing king, capable of hauling up to 7,600 pounds when adequately equipped. All of this comes with the added benefit of lower fuel consumption. This truck will regularly hang in the low nines.

Here’s a look at all the small trucks in Canada now, including the Gladiator.

Chevrolet Colorado/GMC Canyon Duramax

2019 GMC Canyon SLT Diesel | Photo: GMC 

Who is this for? People who prefer the compact size of a midsize truck but still have heavy towing needs.

Why we like it

  • Class-competitive towing ratings
  • Butter-smooth powertrain
  • Impressive fuel-economy

Yes, we’re aware that the 2023 model year will bring an all-new generation of the Chevrolet Colorado and GMC Canyon twins. This also means that the tried and tested Duramax four-cylinder turbodiesel engine will be removed from the lineup.

But if you’re willing to shop in the second-hand truck market, we’re here to tell you that the diesel versions of GM’s popular midsize trucks are fantastic little machines. When equipped with the 2.8-liter turbodiesel inline four-cylinder engine, these humble little trucks crank out a stout 181 horsepower and 369 lb-ft of torque. 

In this configuration, they can tow up to 7,700 pounds, making them the strongest small trucks on the market all while returning a 10.5L/100 km fuel consumption average, considerably less than the available 3.6-liter gasoline V6 (12.1L/100 km).

Ford F-150 Power Stroke

2018 Ford F-150 Power Stroke | Photo: Ford 

Who is this for? Consumers who love the versatility of a Ford F-150 but looking to lower their expenses at the pump.

Why we like it

  • More than 12,000 pounds of towing capability
  • Proven reliability
  • Impressive fuel economy

If you’re interested in the Ford F-150 Power Stroke, you’ll need to roll things back to 2021. That was the last model year this engine was offered with Canada’s best-selling truck. Indeed, Ford figured that since its latest PowerBoost hybrid drivetrain is just as powerful and efficient as the diesel, that it no longer needed the latter in its lineup.

But if hybrid technology isn’t yet your thing, know that the F-150 Power Stroke is a very compelling choice. For starters, it’s a tank of an engine. It has proven itself many times over in past Ford and Land Rover vehicles. Heavily revised when introduced in the F-150 in 2018, this 3.0-litre turbodiesel V6 may be small on paper, but it boasts big numbers. Horsepower is rated at 250 horsepower and torque, at 440 lb-ft. That’s 30 lb-ft more than the 5.0-liter gasoline V8. 

What’s even more impressive is that when mated to a ten-speed automatic transmission, this diesel-powered F-150 can tow up to a whopping 11,500 pounds when conveniently equipped. Perhaps more impressive than that is the fact that the diesel model will consume, on average, up to 1.3 L/100 km of fuel less than the 3.5-liter EcoBoost V6.

Ram 1500 EcoDiesel

2020 Ram 1500 EcoDiesel | Photo: Ram 

Who is this for? Consumers who need a diesel-powered full-size truck, but who prefer the looks, interior and ride comfort of a Ram 1500.

Why we like it

  • Highest towing rating in its class
  • Best ride and interior in its class
  • Impressive fuel economy

Here’s another diesel truck we’re going to lose in 2023. With electric pickup trucks being all the hype these days, Ram, just like Ford and GM, is preparing its version of an electrified full-size truck as well. This, along with ever stricter emissions regulations, forced Stellantis to pull the plug on its beloved EcoDiesel engine offering.

And that’s too bad, because in our book, this was arguably the drivetrain that best suited this truck. Not only did Ram allow consumers to pair it with pretty much any trim level, including the off-road ready Rebel, it proved smooth, efficient, and very capable. Just like the Ford, this turbodiesel V6 comes at 3.0-litres of displacement. But its output is higher, pumping out 260 horsepower and an impressive 480 lb-ft of torque. 

This allows the Ram EcoDiesel to be the full-size truck to boast the highest towing rating in the segment at 12,560 pounds. What’s more, its fuel economy ratings are even better than the Ford’s at 9.7L/100 km combined.

Chevrolet Silverado/GMC Sierra Duramax

2020 GMC Sierra Duramax Diesel | Photo: GMC 

Who is this for? Consumers who don’t necessarily need to tow heavy trailers but favour the efficiency and smoothness of a well-engineered diesel engine.

Why we like it

  • Best fuel economy in its class
  • Smoothest diesel drivetrain in the segment
  • Still available in 2023

The Chevrolet Silverado/GMC Sierra Duramax twins aren’t ahead of the Ford and Ram because they’re particularly more powerful, nor can they tow more. As a matter of fact, when powered by a diesel engine, the GM brothers boast the lowest towing rating in the segment at 9,300 pounds.

But where they greatly surpass their rivals is in the darn efficiency of their drivetrains. These trucks are smooth, quiet, and peppy to the point that you’ll never guess they’re running on diesel fuel.

They’re also the only models of the group that are not powered by a V6, but rather a 3.0-litre turbodiesel inline six, which is no longer built by Isuzu, but by General Motors itself. It now cranks out (updated for 2023) more power than both the Ford and the Ram at an impressive 277 horsepower and a whopping 495 lb-ft of torque. All of this comes with a Ram-rivalling 9.8L/100 km fuel consumption average. Oh, and one more thing: this truck is still available in 2023.

Ram HD Cummins

2023 Ram 2500 HD Rebel with Cummins Diesel | Photo: Ram 

Who is this for? Consumers who need something strong for hard labor, but favour strength and reliability over sophistication.

Why we like it

  • Downright brute force
  • Two outputs to choose from
  • A towing monster

Entering the heavy truck segment, it’s impossible to ignore Ram’s now iconic Cummins turbodiesel engine technology. Available in the Ram 2500, 3500 series heavy duty trucks for over two decades now, these engines have proven themselves many times over from a reliability standpoint. Owners appreciate these trucks for their simplicity, ease of maintenance and downright brute force.

The current Cummins offering in the Ram HD trucks comes in two flavours. At 6.7-litres of displacement, this enormous inline six cylinder is all about churning out big power and torque at low RPM. The first version churns out an impressive 370 horsepower and 850 lb-ft of torque, while the high output version of that same engine bumps things up to downright dizzying 1,075 lb-ft.

While considerably less technologically advanced than its main rivals from GM and Ford and significantly heavier at 1,060 pounds, this mammoth of an engine allows Ram’s big rigs to tow up to a mind-boggling 37,090 pounds when adequately equipped. As we said: brute force.

Chevrolet Silverado/GMC Sierra 2500/3500 Duramax

2020 Chevrolet Silverado 3.0L Duramax | Photo: Chevrolet 

Who is this for? Consumers who prefer the sophistication, technology, and smoothness of operation of the Duramax powertrain.

Why we like it

  • Technologically advanced
  • Very smooth and efficient engine
  • Diesel option available on a variety of different trim levels

Just like it is the case with the standard Silverado and Sierra Duramax, the Heavy Duty versions of General Motors’ diesel-powered trucks aren’t necessarily ahead of the Ram because they're neither more powerful nor more capable. Because they aren’t. They’re ahead because they’re technologically more advanced and come through as the more efficient and intelligent machines of the pack.

Yes, on paper, the GM twins “only” boast a 36,000-pound maximum towing rating. Their 6.6-litre turbodiesel V8, that’s good for 470 horsepower and 975 lb-ft of torque, doesn't sound as impressive on paper as the Ram’s “look at me” numbers. But none of that matters in the real world.

Because on the road, the GM twins are by far the most pleasant to drive thanks to a smooth and seamless power delivery. While the Cummins is a festival of turbo lag, the Duramax never actually reveals its turbocharged nature. There’s also the fact that the ten-speed automatic transmission is smoother and a lot more efficient than the Ram’s dated six-speed unit. If the Ram trucks are the big bruisers of the bunch, the GMs twis are the geeks.

Ford Super Duty Power Stroke

2023 Ford F-Series Super Duty with 6.7L Power Stroke V8 Diesel | Photo: Ford 

Who is this for? Consumers who want it all in a heavy-duty truck: power, efficiency, refinement, and capability.

Why we like it

  • The torque king
  • Always smooth and refined
  • Highest towing rating in the segment

If there’s something Ford understands better than its main American rivals, it’s what truck buyers need. The Ford Super Duty is a case in point, especially when powered by the iconic Power Stroke diesel engine.

With this rig, Ford somehow manages to blend the brawn of the Ram Cummins with the sophistication of the GM brothers. For instance, at 7.3-litres of displacement, the turbodiesel Power Stroke V8 gets significant updates for the 2023 model year that make it the most powerful in its class. It pumps out a never-before-seen in a diesel truck 500 horsepower and an incomprehensible 1,200 lb-ft of torque. All of this is mated to the same excellent 10-speed automatic transmission as the GM. 

All this furious might can only be translated into one thing: more towing. In that respect, Ford doesn’t disappoint. The new for 2024 Ford Super Duty boasts the highest towing rating in history for a heavy-duty full-size truck, breaking the 40,000-lb mark when adequately equipped. That’s a heck of a lot of weight to carry around on a trailer.

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