If you are considering a pickup truck for your business or personal needs, you have a lot of choices. It is generally more expensive to get a full size truck than to get a mid size one. However, the mid size may not be able to do what you need. A used truck may be an option, but it could break down tomorrow. You’ll need to be firm in your resolve as you shop the marketplace.
The trick to saving money is to get the most truck at the lowest price with the best loan rate. This sounds like a big ask, but it is doable if you are willing to compromise on the extras and focus on what’s most important.
#1 Identify the Most Critical Buying Factor
Researching their capabilities can be very confusing. Torque and horsepower are important, for instance, but the make-or-break factors are tow ratings and payload. You should focus on getting the best numbers for the one that means the most to you. If you expect to be loading up the bed with bricks, then it’s payload. If you will be pulling trailers, it’s the tow ratings.
If you aren’t sure, the tow ratings are a better bet. These demonstrate the truck’s proven ability to move a load. That shows its true strength, a factor of its build and quality, not just its engine capability. Most people don’t haul bricks, and your truck may never reach its payload capacity.
#2 Get a Reliable Truck
If possible, you want to buy new. Put simply, a new truck will have better financing rates. This may save enough money over the life of the loan to make it a better deal than a used truck. Furthermore, a used truck is always an iffy proposition. Many drivers work their trucks into the ground before they clean them up and sell them.
If it is a used truck, you should know everything you can about its background. You won’t have a warranty if things go wrong. That’s part of the value of buying new. You have some guarantees that act like insurance against manufacturer defects.
#3 Don’t Overpay for Truck Capability
While most mid size trucks are underpowered, there are some with the same or better power than the cheapest light duty truck. The Ford Ranger, for instance, offers high horsepower as its standard engine, and this allows it to claim the best tow ratings in its class. If you step up to the bigger truck and pay the price, you won’t actually get much more. The Ranger pulls as much weight as many full-size light duty trucks at the entry level.
This makes buying a mid size truck, a better value for the money. If you can get the tow ratings you need and get a lower price, you are getting more truck for the money, even if that truck is smaller. Financing a mid size truck with a more reasonable price tag should mean lower payments and a lower down payment. This may give you the flexibility you need to purchase new.
#4 Choosing Simple vs Fancy
The last way to make sure you get more for your truck money is to skip the fancy cabins. A regular cab will always be cheaper than a double cab, when shopping within a brand family. The larger cabins may be necessary, but you can still turn down all of the extras. The simplest truck, if it has the right capability, will still do the job. You don’t need the latest technology on the dash to do it.
A lower price is always best when financing a truck. You need negotiating room to keep your payments low and to manage the down payment. Remember to research what interest rates should be before you sign for a loan with anyone, including the dealer. The more you know, the more you can negotiate for the best terms.
Your end goal, in all things, should be capability. Whatever you do, don’t let excitement cause you to spend money on nonessentials that won’t help your truck do the towing that needs doing. The final result should be a powerful-enough truck at a good-enough price with a reasonable interest rate and a good warranty.