Buying a pickup truck: How to choose Advertiser Disclosure Advertiser Disclosure We are an independent, advertising-supported comparison service. Our goal is to help you make better financial choices by offering interactive financial calculators and tools as well as publishing original and reliable content. We also allow users to conduct research and evaluate information at no cost and help you make informed financial decisions. Bankrate has partnerships with issuers, including but not limited to American Express, Bank of America, Capital One, Chase, Citi and Discover. How We Earn Money The products that appear on this website come from companies who pay us. This compensation may impact how and where products appear on the site, such as for instance, the order in which they may appear in the listing categories in the event that they are not permitted by law for our mortgage and home equity products, as well as other home lending products. However, this compensation will affect the information we provide, or the reviews you read on this site. We do not contain the entire universe of businesses or financial offerings that could be accessible to you. AleksandarNakic/Getty Images

4 min read published 20th April 20, 2022

Kellye Guinan Kellye Guinan. Written personal and business finance Contributor Kellye Guinan is an editor and writer on a freelance basis with more than five years’ experience in personal financial planning. She also is employed full-time at the local library where she assists people in her community gain access to information on financial literacy, in addition to other subjects. Edited by Rhys Subitch Edited by Auto loans editor Rhys has been editing and writing for Bankrate since late 2021. They are passionate about helping readers to control their finances through providing detailed, well-researched, and well-written information that breaks down complicated topics into bite-sized pieces. The Bankrate promise

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We are compensated in exchange for the promotion of sponsored goods and services or when you click on certain hyperlinks on our website. Therefore, this compensation may impact how, where and when the products are listed within categories, except where the law prohibits it for our mortgage or home equity products, as well as other home loan products. Other factors, like our own proprietary website rules and whether or not a product is offered in your region or within your own personal credit score can also impact how and where products appear on this site. We strive to offer an array of offers, Bankrate does not include details about every credit or financial item or product. Trucks are a complex thing. There are many different configurations, and the size and strength you require depends on how you plan to use yours. Be familiar with the most basic features like powertrains and axles, the cab’s size and towing capacity prior . Picking a pickup truck is a process of investigation however, preparation can lead to an informed decision that fits your lifestyle and budget. What kind of horsepower do you need? A vehicle with more horsepower, towing capacity and torque will cost more. It’s not all about price, of course, but you should consider whether you actually need a high level of power prior to spending thousands of dollars to purchase it. A diesel engine that has higher power can also cost you a lot. A V6 or V8 engine are more common and offer greater power, however there are also four-cylinder engines to accommodate lighter load sizes. If you’re planning to haul the most weight for groceries, consider smaller models that comes with an automated gas engine that has good fuel efficiency. A smaller engine may be better for you and your budget. How much are you hauling? A midsize truck is your ideal choice if have plans to haul large boats or trailers. They’re less expensive and offer better performance than full-size models. Midsize trucks are suited for smaller loads, not towing. Due to their weight reduction you’ll pay less for fuel. If you’ve got something to tow, you should opt for a large-sized truck. There are light-duty and heavy-duty options for virtually every full-size model out there. Naturally, trucks meant for light-duty can carry less , but in addition they provide better fuel efficiency due to their lighter weights. Keep in mind that towing capacity and payload capacity are different. Towing is the amount your truck can haul behind it. Payload is how much it can accommodate in the bed. Even if you don’t plan to mount a strong-duty horse trailer to the rear of your truck, be sure the payload of the trailer meets your requirements. Do you need four- or two-wheel drive? A truck with two-wheel drive is less costly and will offer . You’ll have the option of choosing either rear or front-wheel drive. Whichever you choose is the best choice for staying on the road. A vehicle with four-wheel drive is better for driving off the road and icy or slippery conditions, such as at a boat ramp. You’ll get more traction, but your truck will not be as efficient in fuel. What size of space in the cab do you require? The cab space is one of the more important factors for novice truck drivers. And for most, a crew cab will be the best choice even if it does cost more. Single Cab: Single cabs are the most classic style of two-door. They typically only seat three persons, but they can often accommodate more beds. Extended cabs: Extended cabs are essentially a cab and a half. They have two doors as well as a small amount of legroom in the rear seat, but it’s a good compromise between the one-cab and the crew cab options. Crew The crew cab is the one with four doors that resembles an SUV or sedan. The size of a crew Cab is different according to trim and model and are the ideal choice for those who have backseat passengers on a regular basis. Fuel options You are not limited to just gas or diesel. Companies such as Ford have pledged to offer additional options in the near future. However, these aren’t new choices and may restrict your towing or payload capacity. Between diesel and gas, diesel engines are more efficient in terms of fuel consumption. They also provide more power for working trucks. However, they’re also more expensive to purchase and use fuel. For casual drivers an engine powered by gas could be best. They offer more versatility and lower cost than electric or diesel engines. It is more likely to see these on the bed , too. Long or short bed? The longer your bed, the smaller the cab. If a crew cab is required then you’ll likely be stuck with a shorter bed. If you require a longer bed, you may have to settle for a single or extended cabin. What you need to consider is the frequency at which you’ll be placing things in the bed. If the truck is used mostly for show -it’s fine with this — a narrower bed will be easier to move around and park. It’s also likely to be more than enough space to carry something heavier. Used or new? Newer trucks give you the opportunity to be certain about every aspect of your vehicle inside and out. This is certainly an investment- new trucks are expensive however if you have a style, technology, or other features you want to have it’s best to go. A used car is the more affordable choice. You might not be able to get the exact truck you want but you’ll be able to avoid that depreciation. If you’re looking for something functional you can find older models on the market that are affordable and durable. It depends entirely on your budget and priorities. A new truck may be costly, but it might be more fuel efficient or have more technology. A used truck may be less efficient on fuel, but the lower price point could mean it is cheaper to drive. Manual or automatic? This is more of a personal choice. There’s not much variation in price between these two options, however some trucks may come standard with one or the other. For city or suburban drivers, automatic offers the most comfortable ride. However, if you require more control for off-roading, manual transmissions might be better. After you’ve looked at the main advantages of owning a truck, begin looking at actual models and trims. These will help you get a clear idea of the price range you’ll be looking at. If you are aware of this, you can to book a cab at a reasonable rate of interest.


Written by personal and business finance Contributor Kellye Guinan is a freelance editor and writer who has more than 5 years experience working in the field of personal financial. She also is an employee full-time at her local library where she assists people in her community get information about financial literacy, in addition to other subjects. The article was edited by Rhys Subitch Edited by Auto loans editor Rhys has been writing and editing for Bankrate since the end of 2021. They are passionate about helping readers gain confidence to control their finances through providing clear, well-researched information that dissects complicated subjects into bite-sized pieces.

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