“What truck should I buy?” It’s a question consumers ask themselves every day, but what would senior production editor Zach Gale drive? Keep reading for the answer, and see other editors’ picks here.
For me, form comes way before function. If my fantasy garage must include a truck, I’m going for the street-truck version of the pickup that earned 2019 MotorTrend Truck of the Year honors. And just for kicks, let’s throw in 22-inch wheels reminiscent of the ones on the Ram SRT-10, a long-discontinued truck that was powered by a 10-cylinder Viper engine.
Yeah that’s right—I want 22-inch wheels on my rear-drive truck (check the configurator to see how it looks). I’m not going off-road and I live in Southern California, where we don’t get nearly as much rain as many other places. Thing is, I don’t own a boat or jet skis—I don’t need to tow. If I’m buying a truck, I want attractive styling, a refined cabin, and the best suspension in the segment.
With the 2019 Ram 1500, class-leading ride quality comes standard regardless of whether you upgrade to the air suspension. I’d also stick with the six-cylinder eTorque engine, because I have no interest in racing my 5,500-pound truck from one street light to the next. Instead, I’m more attracted to the prospect of a ginormous full-size truck with EPA fuel economy that’s competitive with midsize trucks (19/24-26 mpg city/highway, rear- and four-wheel drive). Given the results of our Real MPG testing, however, it’s unclear whether I could come close to those numbers in the real world. The new 2020 Ram 1500 EcoDiesel would be another option, but I would probably balk at the price premium (and extra maintenance) that variant would require.
When (not if) my friends ask for my help to move, I’ll be ready with the longer six-foot-four-inch box. And when we go out to dinner after a long day of hauling, there will be plenty of space inside my crew-cab truck. Really, though, in this fantasy of me wanting a truck instead of renting one when I need it, curb appeal is paramount. So I’ll give up the higher trims’ LED headlights so I can add the Sport Appearance package, which refreshingly strips the truck of its shiny chrome. Sticking with the Laramie also means I have FIVE knobs below the 8.4-inch infotainment screen. As much as I want to mess around with a 12.0-inch Tesla/Volvo-like screen (available on Laramie), I don’t want it at the expense of a few big control knobs.
Packed with all the features I want—including a 33-gallon gas tank, a panoramic sunroof, and 19-speaker sound system—my sporty-looking luxury truck retails for over $55,000 before factoring in local incentives. I’ll take mine in Delmonico Red Pearl-Coat.
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