Rental Review 2021 Penske 15' moving truck.

Joined
Jan 17, 2003
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1,843
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9200' Colorado
After a complete U-haul screw up, I last minute rented a 2021 Penske 15' moving truck with a car trailer, towing a 6th generation Honda Civic from Portland to Denver. Truck was a one ton GMC van cutaway with the 6.6 gas motor and 6 speed automatic transmission, dual rear wheels, 55,000 miles on it. Speed governed to 75 mph. Not much to say about ride but other than it really didn't beat us to death, truck had all the comforts of a work truck. Best thing and the reason for the review was the motor. The 6.6 is an absolute beast, with stump pulling torque and great acceleration loaded down and trailer in tow. It would do 75 up all the grades we encountered, and I'd guess if it wasn't governed it would have had a lot more to give. I kept it in tow/haul most of the time although on flat ground I'd take it out but the tach said it didn't make a difference in RPM so I left it on. Trans always seemed to be in the right gear, it never hunted up or down. Specified 87 octane, but we went to 85 once we hit east Idaho into Colorado.

I understand the reason for the governor but it did lead to some unsafe conditions when you needed to pass and it hit the wall at 75. I had to look at each situation and keep it in mind.

Truck had 6 good tires, and trailer had 3 good tires. I made them put on a new one before I left as it was low on tread, they didn't fight me on it at all though.

Fuel started at $5.29/gal in Portland, last fill up in Cheyenne was $3.31/gal. We averaged 11.5 the whole trip combined which I thought was stellar for what we were driving and pulling.
 

JRed

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I don't get much better than 11.5 mpg in my F250 unloaded and it is not what I would describe as "an absolute beast, with stump pulling torque and great acceleration loaded down and trailer in tow"
 

c502cid

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9200' Colorado
I don't get much better than 11.5 mpg in my F250 unloaded and it is not what I would describe as "an absolute beast, with stump pulling torque and great acceleration loaded down and trailer in tow"
Trust me, I didn't even believe the math my kid was doing, I double checked it more than once. I always thought the pump shut off early, I was like it has to take more than that. I was blown away by the performance of this motor or I wouldn't have written the review on a rental truck in the first place.
 
Joined
Apr 20, 2014
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Franklin County, PA
We rented a 16' with car hauler back in 2015 when I moved back to Pennsylvania from Mississippi. Not sure of the year, but it was the 6.0. I was towing my Jetta that was severely overloaded as well as the truck being severely overloaded. Trip was ok except in Virginia where some of the mountain passes on I-81 I couldn't even hold 45mph.

Truck stunk, was uncomfortable, and low on power (power might have been my fault with the overloading). Brakes were not adequate at all. The trailer did tow nice and even though they told you not to back it up, I did so several times with no problem.

I'll still use Penskee for cross country moving, but UHaul is still fine for "local" even though my last move with UH was a miserable experience...
 
Joined
Nov 9, 2008
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NH
My father rented some Bugets when they moved, I think 6L Isuzu power. Gutless and we crawled up some hills. But I the these were 29’ trucks. 9mpg but we didn’t drive for mpg. 70mph limiter, but that was easily defeated going down those hills. :)

No cruise so I would switch feet on a hill as all I needed to do was floor it. Could smell a hill a mile away. Shoulda weighed it hindsight.
 
Joined
Mar 2, 2004
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3,714
Location
Kentucky
I remember the days when a 14-15' truck (Uhaul, Penskey, Ryder) got you a Ford 460 or GM 454 (sometimes even the GM 366ci big block) that made a whopping 250 hp or less, all the while getting 7-8mpg with a normal load. They did the job though, but times sure have changed.

My absolute favorite was a mid 80's ford econoline U-haul with the 6.9L diesel. It belched black smoke everywhere I went, luckily it was one of those $29/day in-town moves. IIRC it returned good gas mileage, but with the penalty of not being able to go above 55mph.

I've outgrown the 15' trucks, my last couple moves were 24' from Budget and Penske-- both had International/Navistar 4300 chassis w/ the DT466E engine.. Those were just fine even pulling a trailer could do 65+ mph and return 7-10 mpg fully loaded.

In 2007-ish I moved across country with a Budget truck that had a GM chassis and Duramax branded Isuzu diesel engine. I think it was a 6.something liter, That was probably my favorite moving truck. The GM interior, controls gauges, etc. made it feel more upscale if you can believe that.
 
Joined
Apr 9, 2008
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15,979
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Central NY
I'll still use Penskee for cross country moving, but UHaul is still fine for "local" even though my last move with UH was a miserable experience...

I rent uhaul trucks to tow my Jeep longer distances. One smelled like vomit, the last one smelled of cigarette smoke. I didn't mind the cigarette smoke but the vomit smell was rough.

2 of them had no oil on the dipstick.

These were both trucks with under 20k miles.
 
Joined
Nov 9, 2008
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20,860
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NH
I remember the days when a 14-15' truck (Uhaul, Penskey, Ryder) got you a Ford 460 or GM 454 (sometimes even the GM 366ci big block)
I drove one of those once, man I was not up to the task of driving that with a granny low… about gave myself whiplash taking off on a hill. 366 didn’t seem too bad though.
 
Joined
Apr 20, 2014
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Franklin County, PA
I rent uhaul trucks to tow my Jeep longer distances. One smelled like vomit, the last one smelled of cigarette smoke. I didn't mind the cigarette smoke but the vomit smell was rough.

2 of them had no oil on the dipstick.

These were both trucks with under 20k miles.

I rented a 20' UHaul back in February when it was down in the single digit temps every night. I had to keep using my lithium jump pack as the battery was not sufficient to start it, even when warm. Glad I had two, that big V10 needed them cranking amps!

Now the 5' x 9' trailer I rented was friggin' awesome. decent tires and towed behind the Tacoma great.
 

JHZR2

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Joined
Dec 14, 2002
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49,493
Location
New Jersey
I don't get much better than 11.5 mpg in my F250 unloaded and it is not what I would describe as "an absolute beast, with stump pulling torque and great acceleration loaded down and trailer in tow"
Interesting. I get 20mpg unloaded in both of my dodge CTDs unloaded.

The improvements in power and economy that have been made for gas engines are incredible. and with the Penske truck having the aerodynamics of a brick wall, it’s even more impressive, considering that it sounds like 75MPH was encountered more then once.
 

AZjeff

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Jan 14, 2011
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in Az where the Deer and Antelope play
In May 2021 we rented a POS Uhaul Ford cutaway with the Ford 460. The truck was junk, 99k miles, 2 quarts low, bad tire, everything worn out but we couldn't get anything else. Flogged it from here in Az to Baltimore towing a car and expecting it to die at any moment. Not a pleasant trip. Then in July 2021 we flew to Baltimore and did the trip in reverse moving daughter and SIL back to Az and rented the same GMC as the OP from Penske with 10k miles. Got about the same mpgs towing a car with the cruise at 65. This 2200 mile trip was a piece of cake. Since then I've towed a a travel trailer over 5k miles with the '21 Sierra HD with the same 6.6 gas and have no complaints. The last trip to Fort Collins Colorado was 2400 miles and averaged 11.6 mpg.

And never again will I think about renting from Uhaul.
 

Nick1994

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Unless you've got a 36' 5th wheel for 4 slide-outs, a diesel is a waste of time and money. These days, I'd go gas 11/10 times.

I've rented quite a few Uhauls. One was an old GMC 26' I drove to San Diego. Besides being 2+ quarts low on oil, a rapid loud popping noise on heavy acceleration, and an insanely loud power steering pump, it was fine. All the others have been fine too.

I rented A 26' Penske diesel with a lift gate in Prescott, AZ and it was absolutely miserable. It had no power. Deathly slow. And it wasn't even loaded heavy at all.
 
Joined
Apr 9, 2008
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Central NY
Unless you've got a 36' 5th wheel for 4 slide-outs, a diesel is a waste of time and money. These days, I'd go gas 11/10 times.

I've rented quite a few Uhauls. One was an old GMC 26' I drove to San Diego. Besides being 2+ quarts low on oil, a rapid loud popping noise on heavy acceleration, and an insanely loud power steering pump, it was fine. All the others have been fine too.

I rented A 26' Penske diesel with a lift gate in Prescott, AZ and it was absolutely miserable. It had no power. Deathly slow. And it wasn't even loaded heavy at all.
If the rentals weren't so ridiculous I'd rent a diesel from Enterprise for our out of state trips. Just to brag about how much power I have 😁

NO WAY will I own a modern diesel
 
Joined
Jun 15, 2003
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38,596
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ME
My Uhaul was miserable, with a voltmeter that hovered at 12 volts but dipped to 11 in time with the turn signal. Had a brand new Uhaul brand alternator connected with butt splices. It made it though.

My class C RV with injected 460 gets 7.6 MPG without exceeding 55 mph, so another testament to technology.
 
Joined
Feb 20, 2007
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6,593
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Southeast
I stopped renting uhauls after so many bad experiences. The most common was not having what I rented available and giving me something else, usually not big enough. once, one of the substituted trucks failed on me mid trip and I had an extra overnight to get a different truck. they never had the diesels I requested even though that’s what I reserved. I generally rent local trailers from Home Depot now and trucks from…. Anyone but uhaul. I think in the original Greek, uhaul means, “never again.”
 
Joined
Jun 15, 2018
Messages
103
Location
Central OH
Can't stand Uhaul for all the above reasons, BUT, will give them props on their motorcycle carrier/trailer. 15 bucks a day for one of the best constructed bike trailers on the planet. Wish they would sell them!
 
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