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While I adore my Wrangler Unlimited I get all the benefits of a truck like the rough ride and crappy fuel mileage without all the draw backs like hauling lumber and tuwing a trailer. 

I've decided that I want a crew cab pickup. BUT I want an economical crew cab pickup. Economical to purchase and operate as a daily driver. 

Specifically I am not spending $40k or more on a pickup truck. 

I'm into positive equity on the Wrangler by $2000-3500.

What does the hive know about the following:

The 2.7T Silverado 1500 2wd? Specifically a brand new Chevrolet for $33k or a 2 year old 4.3l for $32k at the end of it's warranty.

The 2.7 Ecoboost F150? Sadly the only way to get one right now semi locally is to get a used low mileage mid option 4x4 for $32k. It will tow the most. There are about a hundred just like it around here.

Ram 1500 Pentastar? Same engine in the Jeep. No complaining about the current one but I'm worried about the added mass of a truck around it. $30k and the best trade in by $1500. The have a 4wd Ecodiesel but I am not sold on rattle boxes.

Dark horse candidate Honda Pilot Sport AWD. $38k same type of mileage as the Chevy, smaller cabin is a turn off. There is a used 19 for $31k with very low miles as well.

I'm living with the truck for a long time. $38k is more than I want to spend. 

What is your opinion? 

759NRNG (Forum Partidario)
759NRNG (Forum Partidario) UberDork
3/17/21 9:49 p.m.

Is a two year old FX4 Ecoboost(3.5) not even in the running .....??? price .....economy....yadda yadda

Price. Way out locally. $40k all day.

There's a 19 5.3 4wd Silverado and a 19 3.5 Ecoboost at the same dealer, same miles, same package level, $14k difference in price. 

It does not help that the lowest price new ford in three dealerships is $41k with F150s going up to $68k and F250/350s getting into the $90ks

And if push comes to shove Dad has the 2015 F350 rattler and the 40ft when it's Challenge time, but there are more times I need trucky things over the year

dps214 GRM+ Memberand HalfDork
3/17/21 10:45 p.m.
QuasiMofo (John Brown) Forum Supporter said:

It does not help that the lowest price new ford in three dealerships is $41k with F150s going up to $68k and F250/350s getting into the $90ks

Don't limit yourself to buying local. Find a dealer willing to ship to you or make a roadtrip. A quick cars.com search shows there's a handful of $33-36k 2.7s within 200 miles of you...and that's just the listed internet price, could probably negotiate further on a leftover 2020 model. Definitely don't buy used for the same price as new.

Edit: as far as general knowledge, IMO the f150 is the right choice. The silverado would probably do fine though as long as you can stand to look at it / be seen with it.

mr2s2000elise UltraDork
3/17/21 10:56 p.m.

Didn't see tacoma on your list 


cheapest truck to own with insane resale value. 2018 tacoma leased for $225 a month 36 month 

$8100 cost total out of pocket 


sold it for $2700 more than residual 


8100-2700 = $5400. + gas and insurance 


that was my cost for 3 years for 43,000 miles driven 


now I have a 2021 crew cab + long bed.  This isn't a lease this time. 
lowest cost of ownership for my needs 

I considered a gladiator this time around - didn't like the ride. Loved the Ridgeline - but cost of ownership is too high for me 

Good luck with your decision. 

Sidewayze Reader
3/17/21 11:18 p.m.

I haven't much to add about the others, but I can say the most reliable pickup in our mixed fleet where I work has been the Pentastar Ram 1500.

ultraclyde (Forum Supporter)
ultraclyde (Forum Supporter) UltimaDork
3/18/21 5:05 a.m.

I believe in the years your looking at (fairly new but used) the mileage difference between the most economical offerings is small enough that the sale price is your main economic driver. Pick your flavor and find the best deal. If it were me, 2.7 EB all day. I love my '13 with the 3.5 but the newer ones are much better on gas. 

DeadSkunk  (Warren)
DeadSkunk (Warren) PowerDork
3/18/21 5:38 a.m.

FWIW, I drove my GMC Canyon off the lot for $36K a couple of years ago. There were GM incentives and I hit the lot three days before month end. At full MSRP it would have been just over $43K. It wasn't even a truck they had in inventory, they got it from another dealer because I wanted the long wheelbase and white.

akylekoz SuperDork
3/18/21 5:44 a.m.

"I'm living with the truck for a long time."

This tells me to think about long term maintenance, over short term cost of ownership. 

I only buy 100k 10 year old vehicles, at that age you have all the history of what worked and what didn't for the manufacturers.  Always leads me to Japanese vehicles for my wife.  Point is buying newer doesn't give you that luxury so go with reputation.

When looking at old cars for sale, some models are all over the place with 300k miles on them while others at half that have consistent new engines or transmissions, it's a sign.  Or what models at 200k are consistently advertised and everything works at intended VS needs a few minor repairs.  These are what I look for in a long term purchase.  I buy at 100k, sell at 180k.  If long term is 10 years and a bunch of miles, go with the one that will hold up.

Chevy 5.3 will need a new engine eventually from my coworkers experience.  Two trucks, three engines, or delete the DOD.

Honda will need a timing belt every so often, if they still use them.

Dodge, you will have to take E36 M3 for buying a Chrysler product and constantly have to defend yourself.

Ford EB, plugs every 45k and maybe some tailpipe smoke that hopefully remains at startup only.

Thanks for hauling the bike to the Challenge for me.

lotusseven7 (Forum Supporter)
lotusseven7 (Forum Supporter) HalfDork
3/18/21 6:15 a.m.

In the last 5 years, my family has owned a new F150 extended cab with the V6-Eco, a Silverado with some sort of V6 and my Ram 1500 quad cab 5.7 Hemi. In my opinion, the RAM rides nothing like the Ford or GM and not "truck-like" at all. My Ram is older, 2013 and if I had to go buy a new pickup tomorrow, I would drive straight to the RAM dealership first to drive a new one. 

For hauling purposes, a 6-1/2' bed is nice over a 6' bed. As far as the RAM goes, you can get a quad-cab or crew-cab. The quad has a smaller rear door and rear seat by 6" but 6" longer bed. The crew has a "full-size" rear door, more back seat space but the smaller bed. I prefer the larger bed as 8' sheets of plywood/drywall fit in the bed with the tailgate down and don't stick out.

I have no recommendations beyond staying far away from the Dodge eco diesel. A local racer bought one a little over a year ago. It has spent 90+ days at the dealer for warranty repairs. After the last stay, he decided to trade it in on a new 2500 with the Cummins to get away from the Italian diesel. The Dodge dealer wouldn't take it in on trade. Like literally told him they wouldn't buy it at any price. 

He's driving a Ford now. 


MrChaos GRM+ Memberand UltraDork
3/18/21 7:29 a.m.

What about a gladiator? Same thing as your wrangler with a bed and 6k tow raiting.

Crew cab only. The rear seat of the Wrangler has three 13-18 year olds in it regularly and that will not change with the exception of rotating from my children to my grandchildren, we are at 5 now...

Also, the crew cab rear seat on all three big truck options will allow for my 10" subwoofers to be installed. Not a primary factor but one element of the decision process is the ability to add on to the factory head unit and make the system sound better.

I'm headed to a dealer that happens to have all six variations of the three trucks in eco or V8 engines. 4 and 8 GMs, 2.7 and 3.5 Ford (they have a 5.0 but it's into the $40s) as well as 6 and 8 Rams. 

Updates later


In reply to MrChaos :

Less rear seat room than the Wrangler Unlimited and none used in the area. Pushing $60k at four Jeep dealers around me. $54 after supplier pricing. They also don't sit long on the lots as people see them as the new hotness. 

As far as Toyota, I wish that I could drive onto any of the four lots within 140 miles and be treated with a modicum of respect. I went there first. Was offered $8k less for the Wrangler and they had three used Tundras on the lot all with over 40k within $3000 of the new max option Limiteds they had. I am certain Toyota is only interested in selling Camrys, Highlanders and Prius around here.

John Welsh
John Welsh Mod Squad
3/18/21 8:22 a.m.

Sell that Jeep yourself.  They are hot and sell fast.  A friend recently sold her 75k mile 2dr wrangler for $20k by only putting a sign in the window and parking it in the front yard of her slightly busy road.  It was sold (deal agreed) in something like less than 2 days.

Put it on FB and it will be gone quickly.  

John Welsh
John Welsh Mod Squad
3/18/21 8:29 a.m.

Caution on those short rear door trucks.  If getting in the back of the Jeep is cramped, the short door will be just as bad if not worse.  In addition to having a short door they have a shorter rear seat bottom cushion.  This means less thigh support and generally less comfortable seating.  

I like the F150 for the aluminum in your rust belt climate but they seem to cost!

For a "price buy" I'd consider a Ram Classic.  That's the old body that they are still selling new along with the Ram new body.  At sticker the trucks are not that different but economies of scale should mean that the incentives they offer on the old style should be much higher.  Not the "latest thing" but that old Ram is tried and true.    
Again, avoid that tiny rear door on these Rams but they offer a large rear door too.

DeadSkunk  (Warren)
DeadSkunk (Warren) PowerDork
3/18/21 8:34 a.m.

Nissan in Norwalk, Ohio........The one thing I've noticed when browsing for used trucks is the Nissans never appear to rust as much as the other brands. Before buying new I looked at a few 6-8 year old Fords, GMs, and Rams that showed signs of rusting. The Nissan boxes were much cleaner.

(1) Marketplace - 2017 Nissan Titan S | Facebook

No photo description available.vvvvv

John Welsh
John Welsh Mod Squad
3/18/21 8:40 a.m.

Norwalk is the next town just south of my house.  11 miles away.  Happy to inspect if wanted.  

The 5.6L that puts out nearly 400hp but gets mpg like something with 400hp.
Actually, the epa says 15/18/21 mpg.  Better than I expected.

EDIT: caution, that Titan is only rwd


Direct at ...jwelsh02...yahoo...

DeadSkunk  (Warren)
DeadSkunk (Warren) PowerDork
3/18/21 8:56 a.m.

Ooops....I missed the 2wd bit.

wawazat Dork
3/18/21 8:58 a.m.

Based on my early adopter experience, avoid the ecodiesel Ram.  It left me stranded multiple times and many dealers couldn't service them.  I'm done with their vehicles for life.

car39 Dork
3/18/21 9:12 a.m.

I have a 17 F-150 Crew 2wd XLT.  It has the small eco-boost motor.  I bought it because I thought I needed to carry 6 passengers.  You can do that if you don't get the center console.

Likes:  22 mpg mostly around town, saw 27 on the highway with the truck packed to the gills on a hurricane evacuation. Very comfortable, I love Apple carplay after the initial glitches.  Attracts no attention since I see myself almost at every stop light.  Huge back seat,  great A/C nice ride.  Change the oil every 5k, have had no warranty issues or repairs with the truck.  

Dislikes: 40K on the truck and the driver's seat bolster is showing heavy wear.  I try to be careful getting in and out, but no avail.  The carpet is low quality, and was trimmed by blind people with hedge clippers.  You know when the truck is loaded, and can almost feel if too much of the load isn't over the rear axle.  (It's mulching time where I live).  Barely fits into a standard parking spot, so I spend a lot of time walking.  It's exercise, at least.  The engineer who installed the back up camera lens in the tailgate release should be forced to look at the world thru the fun house mirror rain and dirt create.  If they put effort into guaranteeing the lens would be obscured, they couldn't have done a better job.  Tow capacity with the small turbo motor is very limited, like almost non exsistant.  Good thing it comes with a factory hitch, eh?

Overall, I like the vehicle, and would purchase one again, except now that I don't need to haul 6 people, I would probably go to a smaller truck.

Drove the 2wd 21 Silverado and initial views:


10 mile loop, 8 on surface streets with a 45mph max and about 5 stoplights and 2 miles in a 70 capable 55mph zone. 

It's faster than the Jeep. Markedly. The Wrangler isn't slow at all. The GM turbo 4 is buzzy like all GM fours. Not obnoxiously so but it's there. This truck is a Custom level truck but has everything that I wanted. Seats are better than the Jeep by a fair amount. Mileage average NOT being nice to the 14 mile vehicle from the get go was 23.9 with the 70mph section eating 2mpg off the city section. Start Stop function is nice.

I know it won't pull like Jonathan's new 5.0L F150 but this just became a real option.


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