2020 Ford F-350 Super Duty XLT Tremor ・ Photo by Ford
The pickup truck is an American workhorse. For decades it has provided the hauling power to get things done on farms, worksites, mines, factories, ports, and everywhere in between. Beyond its workaday side, the pickup truck also has its leisure persona. If you’re going fishing, camping, or just driving down a country lane on a Sunday afternoon, odds are a pickup truck would make a great companion.
It is hard to imagine what America would be like without the pickup truck. But as much as Americans love their pickups, it is likely they don’t love paying for their truck insurance nearly as much. So to help on that score we have put together this list of the five trucks that cost the least to insure.
If you know anything at all about pickups you know that they come in a wild and crazy variety of models and trim levels. So sorting through all that in a rational way takes a lot of doing. Fortunately, we had help. The experts at Mercury Insurance did exhaustive research to determine the pickups that cost less to insure.
“Owning a pickup truck has gained a lot of traction with Americans and auto manufacturers are making it easier to get a dependable truck without sacrificing the comfort and features cars offer,” said Chong Gao, director of product management R&D for Mercury Insurance. “Insurance costs aren’t necessarily the first thing shoppers look at, but a quick glance at our list of trucks with less expensive rates will leave you pleasantly surprised.” Mercury Insurance developed the list based on full coverage premium (bodily injury, property damage, comprehensive, medical, underinsured, and uninsured motorist bodily injury and collision) for a hypothetical driver with average factors for each rating element for all current-model pickup trucks.
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The 2021 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 is a full-size pickup that competes with the Ford F-150 and RAM 1500 in the full-size half-ton pickup class. These trucks are sometimes called "light-duty," in contrast with heavy-duty trucks, but "light duty" is a very relative thing. The Silverado 1500 offers very serious payload and trailering capabilities. And because the competition never rests, it has just added a truckload of new mechanical and technological updates.
Since 96 percent of light-duty pickup owners say they tow less than 10,000 pounds, according to data from MaritzCX, the Silverado is well-suited to meet or exceed their requirements while providing excellent fuel economy. For those who need to tow more, trailering capacity goes over 13,000 pounds with the 420-horsepower 6.2-liter V8 engine backed with 10-speed automatic transmission and four-wheel-drive. Virtually all configurations of the 355-horsepower 5.3-liter V8 top 10,000 pounds in towing. The 310-horsepower 2.7-liter turbocharged four-cylinder in the regular cab long-box model provides a tow rating of 9,600 pounds and ups Silverado’s overall maximum payload to 2,280 pounds.
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Silverado’s enhanced trailering technology includes a system that offers up to 15 unique camera views to help make trailering simpler. Other tech designed to enhance hauling includes Trailer Length Indicator, Jack-Knife Alert, Cargo Bed Zoom View, and Bed Hitch Guidance. The Silverado’s Multi-Flex Tailgate offers six unique functions, allowing for easier access to bed cargo, enhanced loading solutions, and a standing workstation. The Durabed features impressive cargo space, LED lighting, a 120-volt outlet, and 12 fixed tie-downs.
Work Truck, Custom, and Custom Trail Boss versions of the Chevy Silverado offer a 40/20/40 split-bench front seat and a new Safety Confidence Package that includes a forward-collision alert with pedestrian detection, automatic emergency braking, steering wheel audio controls, and a 4.2-inch driver information center.
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The Chevrolet Colorado is a mid-size pickup that comes in a wide number of variations. Included among them are Work Truck (WT), LT, Z71, and ZR2 models. The latter two are designed to add off-roading to their repertoire. One of the best features of the Colorado is its easy-to-use infotainment system. A 7-inch-diagonal color touchscreen is standard on the Work Truck, while an 8-inch system is standard on the LT, Z71, and ZR2.
The Colorado offers the convenience of a built-in Wi-Fi Hotspot with available 4G LTE data. The safety package available on the LT and Z71 includes a forward-collision alert and lane-departure warning. Rear parking sensors are standard on the Z71 and included in a package on the LT.
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The mid-size Chevy Colorado doesn’t have the payload and trailering capabilities of its bigger brother, the Silverado, but it does offer more than you might think. A crew cab version of the truck equipped with the 308-horsepower naturally aspirated V6 offers 1,550 pounds of payload. Equip the Colorado with the 181-horsepower high-torque 2.8-liter turbodiesel, and it will tow a maximum rated load of 7,700 pounds. The turbodiesel is also the fuel economy champ with a 20 mpg city rating and 30 mpg highway rating with two-wheel drive. (Four-wheel drive is also available.)
Inside, the Colorado offers a comfortable cabin with easy-to-read gauges. Other niceties are the locking tailgate and two-tier loading system.
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Ford’s mid-size pickup answer to the Chevrolet Colorado, the 2021 Ford Ranger is stuffed with driver-assist technologies and is available in a choice of SuperCab and SuperCrew configurations. It comes in three trim levels — XL, XLT and Lariat — as a rear-drive vehicle or a 4x4. Power comes from a 2.3-liter EcoBoost four-cylinder engine delivering 270 horsepower and 310 lb-ft of torque paired to a 10-speed automatic.
In-cabin technology starts with an 8-inch touchscreen with an available SYNC 3 infotainment system. A single or dual LCD screen is available for real-time vehicle, navigation, and audio information. On the safety front, the Ranger has standard pre-collision assist with automatic emergency braking. A lane-keeping system that includes lane-keeping assist, lane-departure warning, reverse sensing, and class-exclusive blind-spot monitoring with trailer coverage is standard on XLT and Lariat trim levels, and adaptive cruise control is standard on the top-level Lariat.
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Good-looking in a mild-mannered way, the Ranger features a high beltline, a raked grille and windshield, and wind-tunnel-tested aerodynamics. The truck’s athletic stance and short overhangs mean better approach and departure angles. Its steel bumper with an available integrated trailer hitch receiver enables it to tow campers, ATVs, or personal watercraft with ease.
Maximum payload is 1,860 pounds while maximum towing comes in at 7,500 pounds. The Ranger has an available FX4 Off-Road Package that features specially tuned suspension, all-terrain tires, frame-mounted steel front bash plate and skid plates, and a rear locking differential. Its Terrain Management System offers four distinct drive modes and Trail Control.
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The Toyota Tundra is a true dual-use pickup, though it doesn’t offer the variations of its competitors from Ford, Chevrolet, and Ram. The all-four-door Tundra lineup offers Double Cab and CrewMax body styles. The CrewMax with its limousine-like rear-seat room is the variation that made our list of the least expensive trucks to insure.
Both cab configurations are offered in six trim levels: base SR, volume-leader SR5, comfort- and tech-focused Limited, off-road flagship TRD Pro, plus two premium grades, the Platinum and the unique and luxurious 1794 Edition. Then there’s the Tundra Trail Special Edition. Available in both rear-drive and 4x4 versions, it is based on the SR5 CrewMax with an upgrade package that includes a 38-gallon fuel tank, front bucket seats with driver’s power lumbar support, and a front center console.
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The Tundra Double Cab offers the choice of a 6.5-foot or an 8.1-foot bed. They feature forward-hinged (conventional) rear doors, and an ample 34.7 inches of rear-seat legroom. The CrewMax has an even longer cab, larger rear doors, and a shorter 5.5-foot bed.
All Tundra models are powered by a 5.7-liter V8 engine that produces 381 horsepower at 5,600 rpm and 401 lb-ft of peak torque at 3,600 rpm. Built with an aluminum cylinder block and heads, the i-FORCE V8 is one of the most technologically sophisticated in the truck segment. It has double overhead-cams, four valves per cylinder, dual independent variable valve timing with intelligence, and an Acoustic Control Induction System for a broad torque curve. It's backed by a six-speed electronically controlled automatic transmission. The Tundra offers a 10,200-pound towing capacity and a 1,730-pound maximum payload.
Photo by Toyota
The F-Series Super Duty was traditionally a heavy-duty “work truck,” but these days, while it is still decidedly heavy-duty, it also has a lot of “personal-use” owners. The Ford Super Duty trucks come in a wide array of configurations with six trim levels — XL, XLT, Lariat, King Ranch, Platinum, and Limited. The Super Duty’s towing capabilities are stunning. For example, an F-350 Super Duty with the 6.7-liter Power Stroke diesel is rated to tow more than 21,000 pounds.
The standard engine in the F-350 Super Duty is a 6.2-liter V8 developing 385 horsepower and 430 lb-ft of torque. Also available is a 7.3-liter gasoline-fueled V8 with 430 horsepower and 475 lb-ft of torque. The aforementioned 6.7-liter diesel V8 delivers 475 horsepower and 1,050 lb-ft of torque. A 10-speed heavy-duty TorqShift automatic transmission is standard with the 7.3-liter V8 and 6.7-liter diesel V8.
Photo by Ford