Types of Pickup Trucks: Which Type of Pickup Trucks is Right For You?

June 13th, 2021 by

historical chevy silverado pickup truck

Pickup trucks have evolved from brawny workhorses to everyday haulers and vehicles for off-roading. They’re widely loved because they offer loads of versatility and greater seating capacity and can tackle nearly any type of terrain while towing tons of cargo. Whether you’re buying a new pickup truck for everyday driving or for commercial use, Cochran Chevrolet has you covered.

Let’s now look at the different types of pickup trucks available in the market, including some key features, with examples of trucks in each category so you can decide what’s best for you.

Full-Size Pickup Truck

full size pickup truck chevy silverado 1500

Half-ton trucks have become a way of life for most truck lovers. These trucks offer a lot of space both inside and out, a vital feature for those who move around with lots of cargo. Because they have a larger ground clearance than compact cars, full-size pickups are fantastic for off-roading. Powertrain options range from old-school V-8s to turbocharged four-cylinders to hybrids. Most of them come in AWD/4WD capability, further enhancing handling and safety on rough terrains.

Full-size pickup trucks are divided into the following categories based on their payload capacity:

  • 1-ton trucks: These are the brawny workhoses for those looking to do heavy towing and and haul heavy loads.
  • ¾-ton trucks: Here we have midsize trucks that can haul 2,500 pounds or slightly more. Most of them have larger engines and better suspension systems than 1/2-ton trucks.
  • ½ -ton trucks: Trucks with a payload of 1,500 pounds or slightly more fall into this category. They offer more efficiency than the ¾-ton trucks and use less power than the 1-ton trucks.

Examples of Full-Size Pickup Trucks:

Heavy-Duty Pickup Trucks

chevy silverado 3500 towing equipment on highway

Heavy-duty pickup trucks command the most power and are designed for serious loads. With designations such as 2500 or 3500, heavy-duty trucks can easily lug up to 35,000 pounds of cargo. In addition to their remarkable power, these trucks combine an increasingly wide range of modern-day comforts, including mobile Wi-Fi capability, and climate-controlled leather seating. Typical pickup trucks in this class include:

  • GMC Sierra 3500 HD: One of the best-in-class heavy-duty pickup trucks, the Sierra 3500 pairs a 10-speed automatic transmission and a 6.6-liter turbo-diesel engine. This beast can tow up to 35,500 pounds. It comes in two-wheel-drive and four-wheel-drive crew cabs with either standard beds or long beds.
  • Ford F-350: Designed for hardwood, the F-350 from Ford can haul and tow up to 32,000 pounds of cargo. It has a heavy-duty powertrain and runs on a V-8 engine. This truck is available in six trims.
  • Ram 3500: This heavy-duty pickup truck places more importance on towing than most models. It comes in a variety of styles, including two crew-cab configurations. The Ram 3500 has a towing capacity of 18,210 pounds.

Midsize Pickup Trucks

2021 Chevy Colorado LT towing boat on trailer

If you want a pickup truck that has exceptional towing capabilities but is small enough to work as a regular vehicle, a midsize truck might be the best choice for you. Midsize pickup trucks offer a great balance between power and size. They are powered by either four-cylinder engines for more casual use or a stronger V-6 engine for a more practical upgrade. Most midsize pickup trucks can tow more than 7,000 pounds of cargo. Some popular midsize pickup trucks include:

  • Chevrolet Colorado: This is ideal for those looking for a midsize pickup truck with exceptional handling and maneuverability. The Chevrolet Colorado features a broad range of customization options, including inlaid triple-sealed doors, three engine choices, and Bose Sound System.
  • Toyota Tacoma: This iconic midsize pickup truck is loved for its well-rounded features. Like the Colorado, the Toyota Tacoma stands out in the class with its rugged off-road capabilities, high payload capacity, and best-in-class reliability rating.
  • Ford Ranger: The Ford Ranger boasts a powerful and exceptionally fuel-efficient turbocharged four-cylinder gasoline engine. It has 4WD capacities and offers electronically locking rear differentials.

Compact Pickup Trucks

Mini trucks such as the Nissan hardbody and the Chevy S-10 were hugely popular in the 1980s and 1990s. Like their bigger counterparts, these compact pickup trucks offer interior comfort, great audio systems, updated technology, and driver assistance features. These pickup trucks are easy to navigate on city streets and let you track from off-road to on-road seamlessly. Compact pickup trucks can tow up to 5,000 pounds.

Some common pickup trucks in this class include:

  • Jeep Gladiator: This truck comes with a big torque potential and can tow up to 7,650 pounds of cargo. It promises efficient fuel consumption in highway driving and a decent towing capacity.
  • Ford Ranger: With three all-terrain models, the Ford Ranger is another pickup truck that embodies the true spirit of off-roading. It’s available in two body styles and three bed lengths. This machine can tow an impressive 7,500 pounds.

No matter what type of pickup truck you choose, we can guarantee you that each modern truck can offer you a pleasant driving experience and plenty of modern accessories. If you’d like to take any of these types of pickup trucks for a test drive, stop by Cochran Chevrolet today. We’re more than happy to answer any automotive question you may have and help you get behind the wheel of your new pickup truck in no time.

Posted in Trucks, Vehicles