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Sunday, September 24, 2023

Should You Drive a Truck or an SUV?

Pickup trucks are, for the most part, very similar to each other. They have the same basic design. “SUV,” on the other hand, can refer to a broad range of vehicles. Some are similar to pickup trucks, by design, and have similar functionality, which is why drivers often ask themselves “which is a better fit?” Don’t worry drivers, we’ll help you get the decision-making process started.

Economics

The biggest problem with driving trucks might be their economy. Although recent models have finally begun to include lighter metals to cut down on fuel costs, trucks are still not known for being efficient. That being said, there are many alternative fuel and hybrid SUVs and trucks. Ford will introduce a plug-in hybrid F-150 soon, and probably a diesel F-150. The Range Rover, the Grand Cherokee, and the GLC 250d are all SUVs that are offered with diesel engines. Check out the Chevy Colorado and GMC Canyon with diesel engines, too.

Seating and Leg Room

Obviously, the rear portion of a pickup truck is made for cargo, not seating. Smaller trucks might not have enough leg room in the rear, for adults. However, larger trucks can be quite roomy. The size of the truck is a big factor in this, of course.

Even midsize SUVs can sometimes seat 7 people. Compact SUVs, around 5. You can expect to find more passenger amenities in SUVs, too. Particularly, the climate control and connectivity are more available in SUVs. Vans are packed with technology these days, as well. The Toyota Sienna is available with AWD and has lots of comfort and tech features.

Safety

If you have a child, you’ll need a pickup with a full backseat in order to properly install a safety seat. Folding rear seats and regular cabs won’t do. Many popular SUVs, like the Hyundai Tucson and the Ford Escape, have 5-star safety ratings. The Chevy Colorado pickup has a 4-star rating, like most small pickups. There are safe SUV and truck options but some may not be suitable. Make sure you do your research before you purchase or lease. Know that SUVs, especially tall SUVs, are more prone to rolling over.

The Cargo Bed

The cargo bed is the defining feature of a pickup truck, of course. The bed tends to maximize the available cargo space. The best advantage of cargo beds might be the stuff you can put in them, though. Need to haul a load of stinky fertilizer? You don’t want to do that with an SUV unless you have a trailer. Your best bet is a pickup.

SUVs usually have folding seats so that the interior can be used for cargo. However, the seats are still there, taking space. You’ll have to remove them to get the most out of that space, and removing seats isn’t always easy. The Honda CR-V is an example of an SUV with removable rear seats.

In Sum

Whatever your needs are, you’re likely to find a truck and/or SUV that suits them. Some SUVs are built like trucks, with body-on-frame construction that gives them strength and off-road capability. Other SUVs are built more like cars, with a unibody construction. They tend to be more fuel efficient but they also tend to have AWD or 4WD available. We’re talking about a vast array of features and specs. You’ll be able to find what you need if you do enough research. Hang in there!

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