Short-Bed Diesel: 1983 Chevrolet K-10

Here’s a short-bed 1983 Chevrolet K-10 and it’s a diesel! Almost every box is checked with this one for me. It’s listed on eBay with a current bid price of just over $2,500 and a Buy It Now price of $4,500. I predict that someone is going to pop on that buy it now price. This nice 4×4 truck is in Granville, Ohio.

This is a solid and great looking pickup, but it’s not rust-free. The rust that is there should be easy enough to repair, and being a white truck touching up the paint should also be a no-brainer. Any of the Barn Finds friends and family should be able make this one look like new again. Parts are readily available for rockers and pretty much anything else that you would need for these third-generation C/K Chevy pickups.

This K-10 diesel pickup was originally owned by an airline and used on their property. The current owner worked for the airline and bought it from them with 148,300 miles on it 10 years ago and hasn’t driven it in the winter, which they say explains the small amount of rust on it.

The interior looks great, but the seller mentions that the dash is cracked so they got a custom dash pad for it. In the last decade the seller has done an incredible amount of work maintaining this truck, including, “completely rebuilt the front suspension using Spicer chassis parts (ball joints and tie rod ends), front leaf springs, all of the sway bar bushings, rubber brake hoses front and rear, front axle u-joints, front wheel bearings and seals, front and rear brakes, rear cylinders and hardware, all coolant hoses, 4 core brass radiator, wiper motor, reman steering gear, reman hydroboost unit, all power steering and pressure hoses, power steering pump, OEM glow plug controller, alternator, all 4 battery cables with OEM cables, all window and door seals (except wing vent seals), front wheel hubcaps, OEM GM front fender emblems, OEM turn signal switch, taillight assemblies, side marker light assemblies, and license light assemblies.” Wow!

Sadly, there are no engine photos, but it’s a 6.2L 379 cubic-inch Detroit Diesel with 130 hp and 240 lb-ft of torque. This pickup has an automatic 700r4 transmission and an NP208 transfer case which the seller says “is the shift on the fly unit” and it has automatic front hubs. This seems like a good one to me, at least as far as having desirable features. It’s a short-bed, it’s a diesel, it has very minimal rust, a nice interior, and it’s a 4×4. Oh yeah, the price is great, too!


  1. Howard A Member

    Whoosh, and away she goes. You were right Scotty, that didn’t last long. Very unusual to see one like this for all the same reasons. I don’t have much experience with this motor, which would have been the only deterrent for me, but I know, when properly maintained, they will go a lot longer than this. You can bet this will pop up again soon with a 5 digit price tag. It was a very nice truck.

    • Dave Wright

      6.2’s are great engines……although not the power houses we have now. This is the engine Humvees use, engines and parts are readily available. The 6.5’s are an upgraded version. The military still is operating early 80’s Chevy trucks, suburban’s and Blazers. They have kept them because they work well and were the last non electronic engines that would not be damaged by a nuclear radiation surge. My current old Chevy has a 6.5, my daughter is driving it right now in the snow and cold we have ( 4X4 crew cab flatbed) Started and ran this morning at 0% after sitting out all night. It is pushing 300,000 miles. I would not hesitate to drive it anywhere. Off course, I am spoiled by my newer GMC Duramax with the Allison transmission but the old girl is great. Horsepower does not tell the entire story on this engine, they have more torque than the big block of the time. The military trucks have a couple of differences like 24V electrical systems….that I love…..the heaviest transmissions and differentials available at the time, otherwise off the shelf stuff.

      • Dave Wright

        There are a couple of dozen of them for sale direct from the military right now

        Like 1
      • leiniedude leiniedude Member

        Nuclear radiation surge? Not familiar with the term but what about the driver ?

      • Dave Wright

        I used the wrong term… is called an electronic pulse……it is one of the effects of a nuclear explosion that extends far beyond the blast zone.

      • Wm Lawrence

        I think he means the electromagnetic surge that will fry unprotected electronic circuitry in the event of a nuclear weapon detonation. If that happens old cars will be at a premium.

      • geomechs geomechs Member

        I lost track of the 100s of 6.2 trucks we sold through our dealership, and the 2000 or so we ran through our diesel shop. 6.2s were good motors although there were some growing pains. The ’82 – ’83 models could suffer from cracked heads (castings too thin). The 700 R4 transmission had some case failures behind a diesel because of the torque characteristics. The injection pumps had problems with the advance pistons and the early ones had governor weight retaining rings fail. We had a couple of 400K mile motors crack the #4 main. Overall still good motors!!!!

  2. JamestownMike

    I’m not a fan of that Detroit diesel, that’s a REALLY BIG negative for me! Seems like a rare engine option for a half ton, short bed, square body truck. It’s in GREAT shape! The rust doesn’t seem too bad, especially for an Ohio truck! I’m not at all surprised someone did the “buy it now” for $4,500. I disagree with the statement of, “and being a white truck touching up the paint should also be a no-brainer”……..just an FYI, white is one of the hardest colors to match! That statement would be true if it was BLACK!

    • Dave Wright

      It is not a Detroit Diesel…….they did collaborate on the design but it is a pure Chevrolet engine. And white is the most difficult color to match……… K3500 crew cab still gets 19MPG after nearly 300K miles.

      • geomechs geomechs Member

        Hi guys. DDA did sell and service the 6.2 as a power unit through its own outlets, but the design and building was all Chevrolet. I remember the test specification sheets from Stanadyne Injection Systems that showed DDA as the customer.

  3. G.P. Member

    I sold my 1984 Silverado 1500 4×4 with the 6.2 auto. last winter. It had a snow plow on it for at least 15 years. It was rusted so bad I had to brace the floor on the driver side because the seat was sinking. Even my dog wouldn’t ride with anymore, but that 6.2 started every time and purred like a kitten.

    • Howard A Member

      Hi G.P., the hot set up was to stop driving them before this happened. :)

      • Emile W

        Cool and Interesting photo set. For a second I thought the plow truck engine went into that nova or whatever you had on there. But from what it seems it went into that awesome 90s cclb which looks amazing!

      • G.P. Member

        Thanks Howard for the photo, It wasn’t that bad. The guy that bought it is changing it from automatic to a 4 speed and new metal panels.

  4. Jim

    Yeah, I had a friend who had one…I had a C10 with a 350 in it, and always wanted his 6.2. He worked at a DDA dealership, and he knew how to tune a motor. He had that thing built to the point where nothing would touch it. Loved riding in it.

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