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Midsize Pickup Comparo

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Comments

  • driver56driver56 Posts: 408
    You're not too opinionated are ya'?
    I happen to see the new gen Frontier as a good looking truck. And yes, I do own one. I also realize it is very subjective, all that looks "good" or "ugly". Now that I've owned it for a while, this little Titan just gets better lookin' because it's such a performer. It does everything I ask it to and beyond. Of all the trucks I've driven, going back 35 years, this is the Champ. That said, I seriously looked at the Taco, it was a fairly close second choice, but I see the Taco as a relatively unadorned over-priced truck. Liked it, just not enough. I had hopes for the GM twins, but was dissapointed with their I-5. Nice looking to my eye, could use a little refinement. I wish G.M. good luck.
    I bought what suited me the most, I'm happy with that, I hope everyone else does just that.
    Cheers!
  • jfritschjfritsch Posts: 958
    The Colorado definitely has a styling thing going on. There was a major advancement in the midsize segment in quality and refinement in 05, with the Toyota, Frontier and to a certain extent the Ridgeline proceeding to a new level with the GM offering being a S-10+.

    Fit, finish and build is just not there, more competitive with most offerings before 2005, but they missed the next cycle by beating the others to market by a year. The towing, I-5 etc is a further negative.

    One thing is for sure, if GM has its manufacturing together and is getting 23-25000 for its 4wd crew offering like the others they are making a fortune. Ugly is too subjective, especially with trucks but GM has always had the sheet metal advantage, there are many truck buyers who won't consider an import, and with its 9 mo head start at the intro, has a lot more of these on the road than the other newer designs combined.

    If I could get $9000 off instead of 4000-6000 off like the others later this year I would buy one.

    --jjf

    You're not too opinionated are ya'?
    I happen to see the new gen Frontier as a good looking truck. And yes, I do own one. I also realize it is very subjective, all that looks "good" or "ugly". Now that I've owned it for a while, this little Titan just gets better lookin' because it's such a performer. It does everything I ask it to and beyond. Of all the trucks I've driven, going back 35 years, this is the Champ. That said, I seriously looked at the Taco, it was a fairly close second choice, but I see the Taco as a relatively unadorned over-priced truck. Liked it, just not enough. I had hopes for the GM twins, but was dissapointed with their I-5. Nice looking to my eye, could use a little refinement. I wish G.M. good luck.
    I bought what suited me the most, I'm happy with that, I hope everyone else does just that.
    Cheers!
  • got1bgot1b Posts: 48
    Not sure which way to go, I like aspects of both, Ridgeline RTX Price, driving and interior vs. ST's exterior styling, bed, frame, and 4X4 low. According to consumer reviews, its seems ST owners are happier, yet most auto reviews gush over the Ridgeline and are lukewarm over the new ST. Has anyone compared the two? Which did yo buy?
  • thegraduatethegraduate Posts: 9,731
    It would seem the Ridgeline is the non-trucker's truck. Handling like a car (which is why most auto reviews gush - it handles and rides similarly to an Accord), a lockable in-bed trunk, and a roomy interior. It will be the more refined vehicle than the SportTrac (especially the coarse-sounding 4.0L V6 in the SportTrac). If you need more "truck" and less "car" though, a ST may be just the ticket.
  • jfritschjfritsch Posts: 958
    If true 4wd performance isn't that important, the Ridgeline is hard to beat for $23000 (RTX). Its a great vehicle for what most would do with a mid size truck.

    If you really need 4wd, the Tacoma, Frontier, or a Full Size may be the way to go, as I'm not sure how the 4wd is compared to the others on the Sportrac.

    Good Luck
    --jjf

    Not sure which way to go, I like aspects of both, Ridgeline RTX Price, driving and interior vs. ST's exterior styling, bed, frame, and 4X4 low. According to consumer reviews, its seems ST owners are happier, yet most auto reviews gush over the Ridgeline and are lukewarm over the new ST. Has anyone compared the two? Which did yo buy?
  • rshollandrsholland Posts: 19,694
    "If you need more "truck" and less "car" though, a ST may be just the ticket."

    Yet, if you need to haul some plywood, the Ridgeline is the better choice, as it will accept 4' wide paneling flat on the floor between the rear wheel wells. Not so for the SportTrac.

    Also, I believe the Ridgeline's 1,550 or so pounds payload is a higher than that of the SportTrac.

    The only major issues I have with the Ridgeline is that there is no low range in the 4x4, and that it (and the Sport Trac too) has a temp spare tire.

    Here's an Edmunds comparo of the base models of both these two:

    http://www.edmunds.com/apps/nvc/edmunds/VehicleComparison?op=0&tab=pricing&isbasecar=false&modelid=&styleid=&refid=&maxvehicles=5&vehicleindex=&removestyle=&numCars=2&just=center&disclaimer=false&modelId0=100516825&styleId0=100756780&modelId1=100505388&styleId1=100693726

    Bob
  • moparbadmoparbad Posts: 3,842
    Mazda B4000

    I nearly forgot the B4000 even existed.
    Very dated considering the current competition.
  • thegraduatethegraduate Posts: 9,731
    Yep. Include the Ranger in that too.

    At least they've updated the engine power (if little else).

    Too bad even that isn't competitive anymore, in this land of 240+ horsepower V6 midsizers.
  • poncho167poncho167 Posts: 1,178
    Auto rumor has it that Chrysler will drop 5 models in the next year possibly including the Dakota p/u. Though I wouldn't buy one, I think overall the Dakota offers the most options for the money. You can get 4-6 and 8 cylinder offerings. I am still not too crazy about the grills on the Dodge trucks, and the newly styled Dakota front end isn't still to big. The Dakota & Ram p/u's are pretty close in size so they is probably the main reason for it's probably dismissal. Ford's Ranger is also supposed to be history.

    I wonder if anyone other than some foreign import from India or elsewhere will have a compact truck again.
  • xscoutxscout Posts: 141
    The Dakota pickup is not going anywhere in the near future. Chrysler just did a redesign for 2008 and a big horsepower jump for the available 4.7 V8 engine. What is Ford doing with the Ranger though? They have been running redesigns on that truck for 24 years now! Time for an all new Ranger.
  • thegraduatethegraduate Posts: 9,731
    To me the Ranger is kind of a special case being the only "compact" truck left.

    One has to look at how many more sales would be gained by putting millions into a new Ranger. It becomes a matter of investment and output.
  • kipkkipk Posts: 1,576
    I agree!

    The ranger is in a nitch all it's own. I don't personally own one, but believe the small size still has great appeal to people that want a pickup with a lot less size than the F150, Ram, and Silverado. The smaller size offers more room in the garage, better fuel economy, tighter turning, and lower initial cost than it's bigger brothers.

    Kip
  • poncho167poncho167 Posts: 1,178
    "The Dakota pickup is not going anywhere in the near future. Chrysler just did a redesign for 2008 and a big horsepower jump for the available 4.7 V8 engine. What is Ford doing with the Ranger though? They have been running redesigns on that truck for 24 years now! Time for an all new Ranger."

    Yes, as I mentioned the Dakota was restyled with still an over-sized grill, in my opinion, for 2008. At the same time it is rumored to be one of the vehicles dumped by Chrysler in the next couple years according to autob--g. Chrysler simply doesn't sell that many of them and as I mentioned they are too big now.

    The Ford will definately be gone soon according to many sources, but the question is will they eventually bring back a replacement? It is only wishful thinking that they will have a replacement at this point.

    Automakers need to bring back compact trucks again because they are too big now, and the buyers generally only use them for commuters anyways. A Chevy Luv, Ford Courier, Dodge D50, or old Datsun p/u would be perfect sized for the majority of buyers.
  • kipkkipk Posts: 1,576
    "... Automakers need to bring back compact trucks again because they are too big now, and the buyers generally only use them for commuters anyways. A Chevy Luv, Ford Courier, Dodge D50, or old Datsun p/u would be perfect sized for the majority of buyers."

    Exactly!

    I don't own and never have owned a Ranger or any other model of Ford Pickup. However, the Ranger is still fairly close to the size of the original "MINI" pickups. Therefore in a pretty good position. What it needs is High MPG engines. Possibly small diesels.

    I had a "Datsun" stick shift and the mileage wasn't a lot better than the Chevy Cheyenne 350 Auto that was traded for it. A couple of trades later netted a Dodge D50. Seems it had a 2.6 I4 engine. With the AT it got 18+/- mpg on the road and 14+/- mpg commuting. The last 2 small trucks with carburetors were an old Toyota I4 MT and Mitsubishi Montero. Both 4WD MT and both averaged 14-15 commuting.
    Last Pickup was a 98 Ram Sport AT, 5.9 V8. Commuting 13-15 Mpg. Highway 17-18 mpg.

    Point is that the old "small" Pickups didn't get any better mileage for me than the larger.

    Today, the mfg have the opportunity to build a small pickup from composites and other light weight materials that could weigh in at 1500-2000 pounds less than their full size big brothers. Install a variable valve, small engine that will shut off half the cylinders when not needed. Maybe with an efficient turbo to kick in, when power is needed.

    Right now we, the American public, have gotten use to the idea of $2.75 - $3 gas. The mfg are constantly raising the Horse power but not doing much for mileage. When, and I believe it will, gas goes to $4 or $5 a gallon, we will be crying the blues again. Maybe Dodge would have been better off making the 4.7 more efficient than more powerful.

    There is and will most always be a place for large, heavy, powerful pick up trucks for heavy towing and hauling. However, most of the Pickups on the road have a driver only, nothing in the bed, and the 4WD models never go off the road.

    I believe the day will come that the Ford Ranger or maybe even a Honda CR-V pickup thingy, or Subaru Baja will be sitting in the "Cat Bird" seat.

    Instead of the present day thinking of "MY small pickup is bigger than yours and burns more gas", we will be thinking, "My small Pickup is all I need and gets great mileage".

    Just some thoughts.

    Kip
  • driver56driver56 Posts: 408
    My 07 Frontier Crew Nismo optioned out, gets pretty much the same mileage that my Nephew's Mazda B-Series 2 wheel drive 3 Litre motor gets. Quite frankly, I never seriously wanted to own a true "compact" truck. I've always kind'a liked them, but just not quite enough elbow room for me. I patiently waited for the mid-sized trucks to arrive on the scene (the Dakota wasn't on my list) and then purchase one. Finally in 05, they rolled in, thankfully.
  • 2005lekc2005lekc Posts: 145
    I think Kip has it right. I had a 1977 Datsun KC 5 speed with no a/c, a 2000 Nissan XE KC auto with a/c, and now an'05 Nissan LE KC auto with a/c.

    I got about 20 mpg on the two 4 cylinder trucks no matter how I drove them even the a/c on the 2000 did not seem to matter.

    The '05 V-6 gets about 18 to 19 around town and 21-24 mpg on the road depending on what speed I drive at. This is using a light foot and looking ahead to avoid having to stop for lights when possible.

    If I drove the '05 like I did the other two it would probably get about 14 or 15 mpg. With age you gain wisdom and patience thus the better mpg.

    OkieScot
  • xscoutxscout Posts: 141
    I agree the Dakota and Ram are a bit to close in size. I saw two sitting side by side the other day and other than the Dakota's cab being narrower they were pretty close in size. You may be right about the Dakota leaving in three years or so but it won't be right now. I owned one of the first Rangers back in 1982 and thought it was a nice size. A redesign that keeps it about the same size would be a good move in my opinion because there are still a lot of customers out there that don't need the bigger size. The Ranger is still selling because of this despite it's dated design.
  • jfritschjfritsch Posts: 958
    Ranger and the Colorado have the compact market covered. The colorado even has a quad and regular cab option. The world has moved on.

    --jjf
  • 462462 Posts: 5
    I have a 98 Nissan Frontier. It has the 2.4 liter 4-banger. Perfect little commuter, you can still haul most of what the average homeowner needs. I get about 24 MPG in town!! Keep it tuned and change the oil every 3-4K and they never seem to die. Fits easily in the garage and I don't have to worry about dinging the wife's SUV. Wish I could get another this size when the time comes...a small one with a diesel would be a bonus!!
  • kipkkipk Posts: 1,576
    462,

    Your wish may well come true. Saw on the news a day or so ago that gas is $4 a gallon in parts of California.

    A lot of folks that thought they "needed" a mid to full size truck, might begin to re-think the NEED vs. WANT ratios.

    Towing and hauling can/will dictate the size and power of our truck "NEEDS".

    What about "wants"? Even though I don't really have a need; How do I look driving it, how do I feel driving it, am I making a statement, are "WANTS" based a lot on ego? And yes!... In my minds eye, I looked darn good driving around in my full size White Ram Sport.

    It is interesting that at my place of part time employment ( a shooting range/gun store) most of the guys drive full/mid size pickups. The guy with the old '80s 4wd Toyota and the guy with the Ranger seem to always have something or other in the bed to take home or take to the dump.. The full size and mid size trucks rarely do, and when they do, it is usually something that would have fit in a Ranger bed. However those owners are complaining about the $75+ fill ups every week or so.

    We are seeing more and more small Suvs becoming available. I expect to see a similar trend for Pickups in the near future, along with "interesting" engine choices.

    Kip
  • asaasa Posts: 359
    Right on Kip! I've read several articles that show a direct coorelation between US vehicle size and America's obesity. Big people want big vehicles.

    I love my '06 Nissan Frontier SE Crew Cab and with the 6-Speed I get 22-1/2 to 23-1/2 MPG on the highway. If Nissan had made it several inches narrower, it'd be even more perfect for a thin family like ours.

    It's been my theory too that s long as people can put gas on a charge card, it doesn't 'hurt' their finances as much as if they had to instead peel off three or four $20 bills. The average American houshold has $8500+ of credit card debt, thus hasn't done a real good job of watching costs on anything.
  • moparbadmoparbad Posts: 3,842
    Isuzu Truck

    I wonder why GM or Isuzu do not offer these storage bins on US trucks, at a minimum they should offer them to commercial customers.

    image
  • kipkkipk Posts: 1,576
    asa,

    "It's been my theory too that s long as people can put gas on a charge card, it doesn't 'hurt' their finances as much as if they had to instead peel off three or four $20 bills. The average American houshold has $8500+ of credit card debt, thus hasn't done a real good job of watching costs on anything."

    I agree. I tend to spend much less when paying with cash. Odd how that works, isn't it? :blush:

    The truck mfg are simply catering to our belief that bigger is better and our "Want" of instant gratification. Five and six year financing (and sometimes longer), interest only payments, and the credit card have enabled the small Pickup to grow in size, and therefore in price, to equal the full size ones. It is not hard to spend $30K +/- on a mid or full size truck. Either, with what would have been considered "Well Equipped" 5 years ago, can be purchased for much less than $30k. But with all the latest gadgets and long term financing we "Need" the $30+K one.

    I remember paying about $3,300 for a new '73 Chevy Cheyenne P/U, "LOADED" with everything except leather. Even back then I thought I "NEEDED" all the bells and whistles.

    We feel we "Need" all the GEE WHIZ bells and whistles. And we can have them at the "same low monthly payment" as a lesser truck. All we have to do is to stretch payments out (with more interest) 12-36 months longer. :sick:

    If we had to save the money to pay cash, and unfold those bills during the purchase, we would be a lot more careful when balancing the "Needs" and "Wants" act.

    After the initial shock, $4-$5 gas will become a way of life and just another thing to complain about and add to the plastic card. And Visa will dance with Glee! :shades:

    Kip
  • I own a 2006 SLT Sport CC Dakota 4.7 and tow a boat and other loads. I also own and tow with a 2006 Nissan Xterra 4.0. The Nissan pulls just as well, and gets avg 19 MPG towing while the Dakota drops to 15 MPG. The Dakota can really haul more on the road but for everyday day driving in town, the Xterra/Frontier 4.0L gets 23 MPG. Great gas mileage for 266 HP. My 2001 Ranger SC4.0L got 19MPG on the highway, 15-16 in town. Only rated 207 hp, had horrible brakes. The Dodge is a rock solid truck for the big hauling jobs and too me a Frontier/Tacoma/Ranger/Ridgeline/Colorado would work in any other everyday situation except rock crawlin, which is a sport all to itself. Then one would have to evaluate thr truck versus needs as someone has already said. Different strokes for different folks! ;)
  • I have been watching the size increasing on our beloved small trucks and I ain't happy about it. I inherited my father's 1965 Ford F-250 Camper Special about 20 years ago. I sold it off because I didn't use enough (still had my Chevy Van) but when I did sell it, the small trucks were a fair bit smaller than it. Now the Dodge Dakota is just about the same size!
    At the recent L.A. car show, I sat in the Ford and Chevy full size trucks and was amazed. In my Dad's old truck I could reach across to the door handle and window crank on the passenger side. It was a long reach but I could do it. These new trucks had my hand waving around a good foot to a foot-and-a-half away from the door.
    And the climb up into the cabs is getting ridiculous. The old F-250 had a seat height that was perfect; just sling your keester sideways and in you went. Not now. You need oxygen and a small lunch to go up that high.
    Our "compact" trucks are definitly the size of the old trucks, so that is where my money will go when the time comes for the next P/U purchase.

    Tigger 32
  • I have heard rumors of new Diesel engines being built for Dodge by Cummins. I am hearing that there is a new 4.6 litre V-6 and a 5.6 litre V-8. The small engine is aiming for 30 mpg and if that is true, it will be a huge seller, I bet. Especially if it is offered in the Dakota.
    I have also heard that Chevy/GMC is going to have a 4.5 litre Diesel coming out although I have not heard any specs on it.
    All this is to ponder the question, "Will Nissan, Toyota, Ford, etal. answer the call and give us some good mileage Diesels in our small trucks? Heck, Mercedes has the Sprinter Van with it's 2.7 litre 5 cylinder that is doing great in the delivery van / motorhome business.
    We can only hope.

    Tigger 32
  • asaasa Posts: 359
    With diesel fuel currently selling at a price higher than premium gasoline in my (U.S.) region, I'm not as enthusiastic about the economy of a diesel truck. In the final analysis, a diesel may indeed be more economical, but I don't think MPG tells the whole story. It'll be interesting to see how this plays out. Diesel technology is growing at an exciting rate.
  • jfritschjfritsch Posts: 958
    Diesle really begins topay off with heavy loads over long distances Esecially when putting 30000miles/yr hauling 30 or so ton loads. The repair an maintenance cost/mi can be much lower too, Putting diesels into small mid size an bigger pickups has always been with amixed result except for TORQUe..

    --JJF

    With diesel fuel currently selling at a price higher than premium gasoline in my (U.S.) region, I'm not as enthusiastic about the economy of a diesel truck. In the final analysis, a diesel may indeed be more economical, but I don't think MPG tells the whole story. It'll be interesting to see how this plays out. Diesel technology is growing at an exciting rate.
  • moparbadmoparbad Posts: 3,842
    4.5L Duramax

    Here is info. on the new Duramax. It will be manufactured in Towanda, NY. Will be available as early as 2008 for 2009 model year and no later than calendar year 2009 in the 2010 model year trucks.

    Ford will have a 4.4L V8 diesel in the F150. Bad news is Ford has already reduced it's planned production numbers for the new engine. It will be manufactured in Mexico. Expected to arrive in 2009 calendar year in 2010 model year trucks.

    Dodge has 4.2L V6 and 5.6L V8 Cummins engines in the pipeline. They are not scheduled to arrive until 2010 model year.

    An International diesel engine in the 2009 Nissan Titan has been rumored for quite some time, nothing more than a possiblity at this point. Nissan is said to have put it's 3/4 ton Titan program on hold.

    As to midsize trucks, well, don't hold your breath waiting for diesel. The only one that has even been mentioned is Honda Ridgeline with a diesel V6 in 2010.
    There was buzz in the past of Isuzu bringing it's diesel engines to be installed in Isuzu versions of the Colorado. GM Colorado/Canyon and Isuzu DMax were a joint project of Isuzu and GM and were primarily engineered by Isuzu. No modifications needed to interchange powertrains. Now the only speculation is when Isuzu will fold the consumer sales of vehicles in North America and sell only larger commercial vehicles. Isuzu's contract with GM to supply the i-series trucks and the Ascender SUV is nearly completed.
  • kipkkipk Posts: 1,576
    I am also having trouble getting excited about diesels in midsize trucks or in cars.

    Spent some time over on the Jeep Liberty Diesel forum. They seem to be having real problems with the diesel engines not running well.

    One thought that comes to mind is that it is new and there are "Bugs" to work out.
    However, another thought dictates that "Bugs" should be worked out before the consumer takes over. I can understand how some problem might not rear it's ugly head until a few thousand miles are on the clock, but some of these problems seem to be there, right from the "git-go", and Jeep has no solutions as of this time.

    Mercedes has been building diesel trucks and cars successfully for a long time. As pointed out by another poster, the Sprinter is a fine example. They have also been building reliable diesel cars for many years. Diamler (SP) owns Chrysler and Mercedes. So why the problems with the Jeep Liberty?

    My understanding is that GM owns a big chunk of Isuzu. The flat nosed box trucks by Chevy appear to be built on the same assembly line as the Isuzus.
    Why not put that proven engine into a Colorado? That engine works fine in the box trucks and should do very well in a mid size pickup.

    Kip
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