By on August 28, 2018

Yesterday’s first-drive review of the 2019 GMC Sierra Denali and its macho sibling, the AT4, sparked some debate in the comment section. Yes, it’s true that the Denali-trimmed version sports a grille capable of blinding airline pilots if the sun hits it just right. One of you even said the mass of gleaming chrome was ostentatious enough to make Liberace blush.

And yet automakers build these high-end trucks because customers can’t seem to get enough of them. After all, who’s foolish enough to turn down an opportunity to grow margins by plumbing the depths of this high-profit market? From these comments, a question materialized: If handed a stack of cash totalling $60k to $70k, what would you buy — a nice, respectable, and perhaps even sporty luxury sedan, or one of the gilded luxo-dozers offered by Ford, Ram, or GMC? And why?

It’s a question capable of polarizing a group. On one side, you have those who feel a luxury pickup is wholly unnecessary — a gas-guzzling, overly large, gauche status symbol that, no matter how much technology an OEM throws at it, won’t deliver the sporting driving experience and ride quality enjoyed by a Jag owner.

Image: Steph Willems/TTAC

On the other side, you have those claiming a top-end pickup is just as capable of coddling your refined ass, with the added benefit of go-anywhere ruggedness and the safety that comes from driving a mile-high, 5,000-pound-plus vehicle. The advent of technology has eliminated the blind spots and most of the parking difficulties that plagued pickup owners for years.

With a modern drivetrain and up-to-date suspension, a modern pickup needn’t be the hard-riding, poor-steering, loud experience of yesteryear. The Sierra Denali didn’t make anything a chore, but neither did the Ford F-150 King Ranch I tested last year. Both stickered above $60,000, after options.

Then again, despite their pleasing on-road manners, no full-size pickup will carve a corner like a Jaguar XF S AWD, Cadillac CTS V-Sport, or BMW 540i xDrive. Even cushier sedans targeted at a more sedate clientele will run away from these trucks, just not if the going gets rough. But how often do we actually cut loose on the road?

So here it is: You’re handed a blank check that covers the purchase of one vehicle costing between $60k and $70k, give or take a couple grand. Do you go the traditional sedan or coupe route, or buy the vehicle that’s capable of doing everything, though perhaps not completely well?

[Images: Ford Motor Company, Steph Willems/TTAC]

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136 Comments on “QOTD: Luxury Car or Loaded Truck?...”


  • avatar
    theflyingspamcan

    One thing that pushes me and possibly others towards SUV/Trucks is that we can actually get what we want in them. I want cloth seats (that are heated), a sunroof, and a V6. I can’t get that in most sedans today, but absolutely can in an SUV/CUV. The Acadia/Traverse both offer those combinations, whereas the Regal/Malibu do not.

  • avatar

    One then well pickup it is.

  • avatar
    whynot

    I’d go for the pickup. Just as comfortable, with more space and usability. “Gas-guzzling” is a red herring, most 60-70k sedans/coupes are gas guzzling too.

    • 0 avatar
      cobrajoe

      One thing I didn’t realize until I bought a half ton crew cab truck: Cargo space is a luxury.

      It gives you the freedom from worrying about how you’re going to get that new table home. Freedom from having to wait for delivery or needing to rent a truck.

    • 0 avatar
      87 Morgan

      And honestly you can coax close to 20 mpg or better highway. So are they really gas guzzlers in the true sense of the term?

    • 0 avatar
      energetik9

      Are they though?

      A Jaguar XF will get 41 hwy. And a BMW 530 and an Audi A6 will get 34 Hwy. I know that’s just a few, but there are plenty of luxury cars that get very good gas mileage.

    • 0 avatar
      I_like_stuff

      15K miles a year at $2.75/gallon = $1375 at 30 MPG and $2060 at 20 MPG. If you’re sweating $800/year, in extra gas cost, you probably have no business being in a $70K car to begin with. And besides the 30 MPG BMW needs the high octane gas which more or less cancels out any savings you get vs 20MPG of the cheap stuff.

      • 0 avatar
        MoparRocker74

        “15K miles a year at $2.75/gallon = $1375 at 30 MPG and $2060 at 20 MPG. If you’re sweating $800/year, in extra gas cost, you probably have no business being in a $70K car to begin with. ”

        True that. Anyone who’s sweating a few hundred $$ over a years time in fuel costs is probably driving a 10 year old Hyundai anyway.

  • avatar
    PrincipalDan

    If I’m buying new (within the parameters of this exercise) truck all the way. The ridiculous resale value means I can drive it for 5 or 6 years and then trade it for another one and likely only owe about $20K for “moving up.”

    My own money and if buying used CAR CAR CAR CAR. I can think of a 1/2 dozen luxury cars that could be purchased CPO for about 50% of MSRP and have my monthly loan payment be pretty tiny for a vehicle that still has much life left.

    • 0 avatar
      eCurmudgeon

      “I can think of a 1/2 dozen luxury cars that could be purchased CPO for about 50% of MSRP and have my monthly loan payment be pretty tiny for a vehicle that still has much life left.”

      And won’t break the bank on maintenance?

      • 0 avatar
        PrincipalDan

        1. That’s why you get CPO. Lincoln or Cadillac program is pretty generous as an example as long as you purchase a used model that doesn’t have too many years or miles on it already. (Can’t wait for Genesis to get it’s own program and not just be lumped into Hyundai’s program – Lexus’ program is pathetic for CPO.)

        2. Buying a $50K car at 1 or 2 years old with 20,000-ish miles for roughly $25K feels pretty luxurious.

        • 0 avatar
          I_like_stuff

          Where is this mythical 1 year old $50K MSRP car for 1/2 off? I’ll fly in and buy it today.

          • 0 avatar
            PrincipalDan

            I’ll probably find the badge snobs that say “that’s not a luxury vehicle” but how about a Cadillac XTS ($46,795 MSRP for the base model) for $27,895 before haggling.

            http://www.chevroletofsantafe.com/VehicleDetails/certified-2017-Cadillac-XTS-3.6L_V6_FWD_Luxury-Santa_Fe-NM/3174648363

            That’s awfully close. The Luxury trim is actually $51,390 MSRP – less than $30K for 1 year old with warranty sounds pretty good to me.

  • avatar
    ajla

    “You’re handed a blank check that covers the purchase of one vehicle costing between $60k and $70k”

    1 Charger Hellcat plz.

  • avatar
    Maymar

    I just don’t want to live somewhere with the sort of road and parking space to accommodate a full-sized truck (or, at least with my wife and my current career prospects, anywhere we’d be willing to live outside a city would require excessive commutes). Pretty much by default, it’s the luxury sedan.

    • 0 avatar
      e30gator

      This. If I lived and worked in the country or some small town where parking is never an issue, a pickup would work. But my vehicles usually only see congested suburban shopping centers and prime real estate downtown parking. A large pickup is tough to park (especially for my 5″0 wife) anywhere around our city. Our midsize CUV (Highlander) on the other hand is never an issue around town and you could actually see what’s directly behind you without relying on back-up cameras.

    • 0 avatar
      Hired Help

      I live in a city. No issues here with an ’18 Crew Cab. The truck parallel parks it self if need be.

      • 0 avatar
        e30gator

        IDK, Hired Help…

        I like to sit and have a beer sometimes after work at my favorite brew spot and watch the fun as the many, many folks driving big rigs either have to pull an Austin Powers to get it between the lines or just give up looking for a big enough space before retreating to the back of the lot. I saw one guy a couple of months ago put his trailer hitch right through the radiator of a Jeep Liberty. Good times.

        Meanwhile, my $h!t box is soaking up prime real estate in the front row, oblivious to any shopping carts grinding up against it.

        • 0 avatar
          DeadWeight

          Jimmy McGill Hyundai special with mismatched body and hood!

          I’m having a fantastic year financially, and am about to make a huge bump, and still will probably never (probably) buy a new vehicle again.

          I’m not into that anymore, after life lessons learned, no matter hpw high my income.or savings.

          There is definite satisfaction for my personality type getting a like-new, extremely solid, perfectly maintained, supremely co portable and fitting-like-a-glove’vehicle, with 30,000, 20,000, or even 15,000 miles on the odometer for 60%, 50% or 35% of what the new owner paid.

          Even if I had Bezos-money I’d feel the same sense of satisfaction of obtaining value. It’s in my DNA and a lesson learned from past experiences.

          • 0 avatar
            Vulpine

            Value is perceived where value is received. No “pre-owned” car in my history has given me value; all needing major repairs within the first year of ownership and almost always due to issues ‘hidden’ by the previous owner. This has proven relatively true even with acquaintances who buy used either because they can’t afford new or, like you, try to save money by taking on a “pre-owned” car. As such, I have received far more value in buying new and have never regretted my decision to purchase new.

            But then, unlike many who buy new all the time, I retain the vehicle until I no longer trust it; typically no less than 8 years and often significantly longer. I do expect my next purchase to also be my last, as I expect it to outlast me and even if not, my wife will be my driver. The only exception will probably be if autonomy becomes capable not only of door-to-door navigation but also locating a suitable parking space so that I no longer need to take manual control. That time will come but I don’t know if I will live to see it. I honestly hope I do.

      • 0 avatar
        Maymar

        A couple years back, the fleet I was working with had 3 Silverados get the bed smashed in on the exact same spot on the passenger side because someone cut the corner in a parking garage too much. Likewise, I see how much more of a struggle the full-size trucks in my condo garage have than anyone else, trying to navigate it. It can be done, but it’s just not worth the hassle.

        • 0 avatar
          DenverMike

          “…it’s just not worth the hassle…”

          So yeah wow OMG I gotta turn a little wider, check my mirrors a little more… The rest is clearly mama drama.

          Eventually it becomes automatic. Yes I welcome the big city, downtown driving/parking “challenge” every chance I get. Twice a week usually. And to anyone’s surprise, I’m not alone. Clearly not just tradesmen, but personal use fullsize pickups are everywhere in big cities, beach communities, etc, and their driver’s don’t seem stressed in any way.

          I’m sure they’ll tell you the same thing. It’s worth any extra “pain” and suffering.

          • 0 avatar
            Maymar

            So clearly it’s worth the hassle to you then.

            Also, never been to Denver, but I’d assume being further west (re. developed later especially post-automobile), it was built a little more spacious?

          • 0 avatar
            DenverMike

            Tight grid, laid out mid 1800s gold rush. Weird confusing turns, triangular blocks and 5-point intersections.

            Any place you can fit a big sedan or midsize pickup/SUV, anyone can stuff a fullsize pickup in it, or fullsize SUV, with not much more effort or skill.

            But if you’re already not a fan, then yeah why do it?

  • avatar
    gtem

    I guess I’ll be “that guy” and break the rules: neither. I’d buy a nice SUV, $60-70k isn’t quite Land Cruiser money but it’d get me into a GX, Armada with oodles of cash left over, or Suburban. The biggest pitfall of the current crew cab halftons are the very upright rear seatbacks. Ironically enough the old Tundra crewmax seems to be one of the best as far as having some backward tilt, and prior to ‘14 they actually tilted and slid like a Ram megacab. The F150 especially has a bolt upright rear seat, at the same time has absurd amounts of rear legroom. Why not sacrifice an inch or two of that for better long haul comfort?

    • 0 avatar
      2drsedanman

      “Why not sacrifice an inch or two of that for better long haul comfort?”

      Exactly this. It was a big drawback actually identified by my 8 year old daughter. She said the seats were not comfortable in the back of the trucks we looked at (4-door F150, Tundra, and Ram). She much preferred the sliding, adjusting seats in the Sienna. I’m with you, not sure why this isn’t at least an option. I realize some of these seats flip up for storage underneath. But not everyone uses this function and would rather have a comfortable, adjustable seat, I’m guessing some sort of 60/40 arrangement.

    • 0 avatar
      WalterRohrl

      2019 Ram Laramie and up the rear seats DO recline. The bottom cushion actually moves forward a bit and the seat back then reclines to 8 or 9 different angles.

      • 0 avatar
        la834

        For the first time I think I’d pick a Ram truck over a Ford or Chevy. The reclining rear seats, the coil springs, eTorque, the huge touchscreen. More comfortable than the alternatives.

    • 0 avatar
      shane_the_ee

      I’m that guy, except in real life. I used to own an X308 XJ Vanden Plas. Best car I’ll ever own. But now I’ve got 4 kids and a 5400lb travel trailer. And my real $60-70k went to the Ford dealer for an Expedition Max FX4 with almost all the options boxes checked. Sure, it’ll never smell, look and feel like that Jaguar did, but it gets to the trail heads, down the forest service roads, and tows with aplomb all while carrying all 6 of us. I might’ve bought a truck, but they’re too long and the Expedition is far more comfortable with 6 people.

    • 0 avatar
      DeadWeight

      Large SUVs DESTROY almost all pickup trucks because pickup truck beds have become relatively diminutive relative to the size of the full size pickup.

      The TTAC “review” of the new Sierra Denali was hilarious for many reasons, one being the picture of the open tailgate bed barely being able to fit a quad. No one would haul that quad in such a way – it’s laughable.

      A full size SUV can tow and haul, and better yet, has a higher, covered roof over the stuff you’ll be actually hauling vs towing.

      And this is why there are so many vans, beaten up large SUVs, and even station wagons and minivans on construction sites.

      A pickup truck bed isn’t nearly as functional or versatile or even usefulas marketing and myth makes it out to be, and this is why approx 93.7% of most shiny, new, baubble pickup truck drivers ARE HAULING AIR APPROX 97.3% OF THE TIME.

  • avatar
    redapple

    The $65,000 tax write off wont work on a Car. Pick-up yes.

    BroDozer = dykc measuring contest. Popular with the 5’9″ and under crowd.

    • 0 avatar
      PrincipalDan

      I’ve often wondered which vehicles are purposely engineered to be 6,000+ lbs GVWR just to hit the tax write off guidelines?

      I know there are some 3 row CUVs that hit the tax write off definition and some that don’t, I’ve often thought those that do was on purpose.

  • avatar
    Hummer

    Easy, most so called luxury cars today only come with lowly V6s in the 60-70k range, so a pickup it would have to be. I couldn’t justly waste 60-70k to live with that.

    • 0 avatar
      ajla

      That price range still gets you a V8 with the G80, G90, Q70, and C63.

    • 0 avatar
      FreedMike

      A 400-hp V-6 – which is what you get in a $70,000 luxury car – is far from lowly.

      • 0 avatar
        chevyfan029

        Point being at the end of the day you still have a V6. No V6 will ever match a V8 in terms of refinement and sound.

        • 0 avatar
          sportyaccordy

          A modern V6 easily curb stomps a 10-20 year old V8 in terms of refinement. And the margins of refinement between a current V6 and V8 are well into the realms of diminishing returns. We are not talking about GM 3800s with rusted exhausts here.

          • 0 avatar
            Hummer

            Too bad we have to compare a 10-20 year old V8 to get close to a modern V6 in terms of refinement. Why wait another 10-20 years to get V6s to the level of refinement of current V8s when you can get the refinement and reliability today without more moving parts i.e. turbos, higher compression ratios, clogging DI, and other “tricks” to make that V8 power.

          • 0 avatar
            la834

            As a former GM 3800 driver (Series II) I can say with certainty it actually did feel more refined and smoother than many V8s I’ve driven.

    • 0 avatar
      MoparRocker74

      V6 = minivan motor. If you MUST make do with less than 8, than an inline is the only way to fly. V6’s are good for packaging which is why theyre just fine for plebian fwd platforms. I6 is the superior 6 banger…but gimme that V8 and its rumble.

  • avatar
    jack4x

    I like the idea of a luxury sedan, but it’s just that…a luxury.

    I actually “need” a truck to plow my road, to tow a car trailer, to move things around that don’t fit in other vehicles, to get through 2 feet of lake effect snow, etc. Since I spend a lot of time in a truck, it might as well be nice.

    My thinking might be different if I didn’t have other vehicles at home that could satisfy the “fun to drive” part. But I certainly don’t agree with the idea that a leather lined truck with lots of features is any more wasteful than a sports car or luxury sedan. Most all of us could get by with a Corolla, but that isn’t why we are commenting on an enthusiast site. Car enthusiasm comes in many forms and some people just prefer trucks.

    • 0 avatar
      energetik9

      But isn’t a loaded truck also a luxury? Which was the original question.

      • 0 avatar
        PrincipalDan

        lol I would say “true” – a Denali (as an example) offers no real utility over a Sierra in SLE/SLT trim other than the 6.2 ltr engine (which you could get more cheaply by simply upgrading to 2500 over 1500.)

        Luxury (by definition) is not necessity.

        • 0 avatar
          kcflyer

          The 6.2 is not yet an option in the 2500 or heavier GM trucks. The 6.0L is the gasser option. Good motor but thirsty, designed for heavy loads and towing. I have to wonder if GM just doesn’t feel the 6.2 can handle that kind of duty.

      • 0 avatar
        jack4x

        My reasoning for phrasing it that way is that I could get by pretty easily without owning a sedan of any kind, whereas if I was forced to live without a truck, I would need to move.

        They are both luxuries, but for me, one is more of a luxury than the other.

  • avatar
    IBx1

    Between $60k and $70k I’ll take a Black Label Continental since the King Ranch doesn’t come with saddle leather anymore.

    • 0 avatar
      Drzhivago138

      That Castaño leather on the earlier King Ranches was a bit of a two-edged sword: yes, it developed character as it aged, and was quite supple when cared for, but few owners cared for it like it was supposed to be. The “Lariat with a dyejob” leather that’s been used for the past 10 years is much more tolerant of abuse and is almost as nice.

  • avatar
    sportyaccordy

    Easy choice. BMW 330e, fully loaded. Ice the cake with a BMW LSD, H&R/Koni suspension and some normal tires on HRE FF01s. A $70K pickup truck lol. How dare you

  • avatar
    Syke

    Given the two choices you’re offering I’d take the car. Any pickup I own is going to be used for motorcycle hauling, dirty hauling and rough hauling. And there’s no way I’m banging up a $70k vehicle deliberately.

    Now, in the REAL world:

    If you gave me $70k for a vehicle, I’d first find a way around any legal restrictions you put on the spending of the money. Then, once the inevitable taxes are paid, at least two thirds of that money would go into one of my investment income accounts. The remainder would be split between $5000.00 for a used 2wd pickup for the work uses, and the remainder in a nicely equipped used car. If I can do a used Lincoln, Cadillac or Lexus, all the better (no, I’m not touching anything German with the left over money).

  • avatar
    87 Morgan

    Full size domestic luxury bro-dozer for me. Compared to a German luxury sedan, even or especially the 100k + msrp units, the dozer will spend 110 the time in the shop, can be serviced by any qualified or quite frankly DIY individual and oh by the way give 200k problem free 400+ hp miles.

    The German luxury sedans do not provide this. I will sacrifice having to slow down in the corners once in awhile.

  • avatar
    John R

    If cost of insuring is no object?

    I’ll say Hellcat Charger…today.

    Ask me again tomorrow I might say Lexus GS-F (white, with a red interior).

  • avatar
    SixspeedSi

    Tough call, as I’ve always aspired to have something nice like a 550i or powerful Merc. However, after driving these luxury trucks, my leaning is towards them. The asterisk being if I had space. Currently, my near city living would render this difficult.

    These trucks hit what I want in a luxurious car. Big, comfortable ride, V8 rumble, excellent seats, modern infotainment with CarPlay, and now you can finally get modern safety equipment and adaptive cruise. Give me a Ram Longhorn and I’d be happy.

    Sure they don’t handle like a German sedan or something sporty, but who cares, neither do the modern German cars! I can see why the modern half-ton is a great mix of luxury, family hauler and mobile office for a lot of people across the country.

  • avatar
    e30gator

    Using an expensive $70k truck for actual “truck stuff” would drive me crazy over the wear and tear since I freak whenever I see a fresh scratch or door ding. So, if I were to spend that kind of money on a pretty, new luxo-truck, I’d still want a beater to daily, which to me, defeats the whole purpose of having a truck.

    I’ll take a nice Lexus sedan and use the money I saved on the truck-premium to buy an old Chevy or GMC work truck to haul those pool chemicals landscaping debris.

    • 0 avatar
      DenverMike

      It gets easier with every dent/scratch. It’s still a truck, they just add character and you can always have it straightened and refinished. But you won’t.

      You can figure you’ll do in when you trade/sell, but unless it took a major hit, minor stuff doesn’t really hurt a pickup’s value.

      If it was an 8-series BMW, or any luxo car or brand, you can’t drive it around with noticeable dents and stuff. Yikes.

  • avatar
    TeamInstinct

    Well this is an easy QOTD. The truck all the way. Could pull my boat in nice luxurious comfort, drive the bit of gravel to my house no worries-even when the snow gets deep, not have to worry as much about the monster potholes everywhere. Parking is no issue, heck, I rarely even have issue parking my work truck somewhere if required, especially if the mirrors are folded in.

    I have exactly 0 interest in driving something “sporty” or “sportily.” I cant even say I know where I’d drive like that, lol. Most importantly, I’ve never been in any luxury cars-but being 6’4 and 215 I find most cars and small CUV’s excruciatingly uncomfortable-I wanna be able to stretch out!

  • avatar
    energetik9

    I just have no practical need for a pickup. I’ve owned one pickup my whole life and never used it for it’s purpose. I’d take the sedan (and really a sport sedan or sports car) any day. Big pickups seem pretty ridiculous in a big city and are hard to park and maneuver. That’s just me though.

  • avatar
    Lightspeed

    I’ll probably err on the side of reliability and quality and make a 2005-6 LS430 my next car. But, a couple of day-trips in my friend’s F150 Platinum have changed my opinion of trucks. These things are quite amazing, and you get 4WD, and…it’s a truck!

  • avatar
    PeriSoft

    $70k isn’t quite enough for a new A7 / CLS, so I’m going with a loaded up S90 Inscription. I sat in one of them and everything was so nice that it made me feel like I was someplace I shouldn’t be. Volvo just nailed the interior. It’s amazing.

  • avatar
    Car Ramrod

    Car all the way. Given the rules offer no choice to buy used or pick an SUV, I’ll still take the sedan. Performance editions seem to depreciate a bit less than a larger mainstream model, so for me it’d be base M3 over a well-equipped A6 or 540i.

    I don’t want to maneuver or park a big truck, a week I spent with a 2015 Yukon was both boring and exhausting. Home depot, Uhaul, and enterprise have all the trucks I’ll ever need.

  • avatar
    30-mile fetch

    Torn. I’ve no use for the towing & hauling capabilities of the trucks and the cowboy-pandering cues all over these rigs bug the hell out of me for some reason. And they’re too wide for a lot of trails, which is where my 4×4 BOF interest lies. But a Lariat F150 5.0 w/ FX4 would still get down enough of them to make a good family travel and camping vehicle.

    I’d much rather drive a $60-70K sports sedan/coupe daily. CTS VSport or similar. Colossal waste of money given the depreciation of the segment and the maintenance costs, and good luck finding an open road to enjoy the car’s performance. The big barges like the G90 or LS or Continental don’t interest me in the same way–if I’m giving up the truck capability I want really solid handling in return.

    For practical reasons I’ll go with truck. Buy a more modest used sporty sedan on my own dime in a few years to satisfy occasional back road flings.

    • 0 avatar
      whynot

      The cowboy pandering cues are only on certain trims (Ram Laramie Longhorn, Ford King Ranch, Chevy High Country). They 3 domestic all also offer normal luxury which dump the cowboy details (Ram Limited, Ford Platinum, GMC Denali).

  • avatar
    FreedMike

    Not even a question for me – I’d pick a car.

    1) I’m not into trucks. Never have been.
    2) I have no need for a truck, so one makes zero sense in my life.
    3) An expensive truck makes even less sense.

    If I have $70,000 to drop on a vehicle, and need a truck, I can afford to rent one for a day or two.

  • avatar
    aajax

    I don’t know anything about trucks except that the existence of a 25% tariff on imported ones means they’re way overpriced.

  • avatar
    rocketrodeo

    The truck without a second thought. I don’t ever worry about parking. I am regularly concerned with traction and ground clearance. I tow and haul. It’s going to get mud and blood in it. In the places I live and travel to — which never include golf courses or valet parking — a luxury car is going to be a social liability. And I have no interest in the massive depreciation that luxury cars incur — nor their repair bills. Luxury trucks are built on some of the most reliable platforms of ANY vehicle. Higher operating costs are offset by lower maintenance costs.

    • 0 avatar
      IHateCars

      Same here….as much as I’d like a new S6 or GS-F, $70K won’t buy one. And I’d only want those as a toy car in addition to the Raptor that I’ve been driving for the last 6 years. $70K won’t buy a new Raptor up here (and I don’t like the TT3.5 in it, even though it moves), I’d get a loaded Platinum SuperCrew with the 5.0. With Ford Employee pricing right now, it would come in well below $70K which leaves change for mild lift and 35s. And I’d still have massaging seats and CarPlay in my new truck!

  • avatar
    BunkerMan

    As I already own a perfectly capable mid-range truck that I am not afraid to scratch or get dirty, I’d go with a car. The only “luxury” features my truck is missing are a sliding rear window and heated front seats. Anything else is something that would eventually break.

    For my car, I’d get a new Lincoln Continental. It’s only slightly larger than my current car, but much nicer.

  • avatar
    Dan

    Loaded truck vs SUV is a reasonable question but a luxury sedan has been an oxymoron for 10 years now.

    There’s nothing luxurious about sitting on the ground with bad sight lines and no elbow room. No amount of aniline leather or pretentious badging will fix that.

  • avatar
    Ermel

    I’ll have a powerful, nicely trimmed, not-too-huge van please. Here in Germany, that would be a Volkswagen Multivan; in the US, probably a Transit Custom or some such. Biggest engine, 4WD, and still plenty of cash left for options. Sedans and pickups just don’t work for me; wagons do, but for 60k, I’d take the next step up because I just don’t want a luxury car.

    • 0 avatar
      PrincipalDan

      I wish I could get a Transit Connect LWB with 2 litter turbo. Then it might actually be able to get out of its own way.

      • 0 avatar
        Ermel

        I was able to spec a rather nice Mercedes Vito 250 CDI (2.2 I4, 190 bhp) LWB camper van with fold-up roof, removable seats (so it’ll take moderate amounts of cargo as well), 4WD, and a couple of goodies like aux heater, double electric sliding doors, towing hitch (good for 2.5 tonnes), etc., within the price limit. So, one of these please. In red, if you would. (Shame the V6 was discontinued for Europe, though.)

        A car you can sleep in, with a heater and a fridge — that’s what I call luxury. Besides, I bet it’ll still run circles around that pickup truck, do far better offroad than any luxury sedan, and top the mpg of either.

    • 0 avatar
      Drzhivago138

      We don’t have the mid-size Transit Custom here, just the big Transit and the little Transit Connect.

  • avatar
    eggsalad

    Even if you handed me $70k outright, I could not bring myself to spend it on a vehicle.

    $70k is house money in flyover country.

    • 0 avatar
      Cactuar

      I was going to say the same thing. $70k on a vehicle is insanity. Even $35k I think is crazy, considering you can get some excellent used vehicles for around $20k. I’d invest the rest. Would be nice for a change if a generation left an inheritance for once rather than debts?

      • 0 avatar
        TwoBelugas

        why draw the line at 20k? There are still lots of usable used cars with tons of life left for 5-10k these days.

      • 0 avatar
        Chuck Norton

        Cactuar

        That’s rather a self deserving attitude with the “inheritance” comment. I’m getting ready to figure out what to spend the money that I worked hard for all my life-so not to leave my children a bundle of cash. They can have the house split three ways-which is a nice sum. So yes-I’m getting ready to drop 50 large on a new truck in the next 12 to 18 months. Currently leaning toward the RAM. They can get the rest of the money the way I earned it-through hard work

    • 0 avatar
      I_like_stuff

      “$70k is house money in flyover country.”

      Not really. Maybe a mobile home? But that’s isn’t a house. I live deep in the heart of flyover and $150K is about the bare minimum for a house. And even then it’s not a house most people would want to live in.

    • 0 avatar
      Drzhivago138

      $70K is certainly not house money here, but I couldn’t spend it all on a single vehicle either. My dream truck comes out to about $48K before incentives, and that’s all the luxury I could ever want living on a gravel road.

  • avatar
    Vulpine

    Personally, I’d take the money and buy a reasonably-equipped mid-sized truck and a Fiat 124 and get the best of both worlds.

  • avatar
    a5ehren

    E400 with all the luxury boxes checked for me. Don’t need a truck.

  • avatar
    I_like_stuff

    $60K trucks aren’t $60K. Generally speaking, whatever MSRP is, take 20% off and it’s what you will actually pay by the time all the incentives are factored. Wait until the next year model is on the lot and it’s more like 30% off.

    Source: I bought a RAM last year and got $12K off a $49K sticker price without much too much of an effort.

  • avatar
    AK

    In no realistic scenario would I choose the truck here.

  • avatar

    Luxury coupe because I hate sitting up high

  • avatar
    deanst

    Curious that despite all the claims about pickup reliability, I never see any vehicles rust as much as a ram pickup….

  • avatar
    arach

    In all honestly, the only reason why I don’t drive a F350 King Ranch as a daily driver is because I can’t afford it.

    Throw dollars and sense out the window and I would… or maybe a Ram Limited.

    Trucks > Cars for DD duty in my opinion. They are cooler, more comfortable more convenient, more spacious, more versatile, more durable, more easily maintained…

    The only reason I don’t is because they still get bad fuel economy and they are expensive.

    But some day when I feel like I can afford it, I’ll drive a brodozer all day every day!

    I always wondered why someone would choose a luxury car over a luxury truck and sacrifice all the benefits of a truck unless they are a badge whore or have multiple vehicles including a nice truck. I consider a Ford King Ranch more luxurious than a tight, confined, low to the ground S class mercedes… although I’m sure someone will try to tell me ostrich leather is nicer than cow leather, and LED pretend star ceiling liners is better than real stars through a sunroof?? I don’t know.

    • 0 avatar
      e30gator

      Wait, weren’t you the guy talking about trading his Ferrari for a Lotus?

      • 0 avatar
        arach

        Yeah… so much for an anonymous face.. haha.

        Not sure if this is in reference to choosing a truck over a sedan for a DD (I love driving sports cars… ) or with the concept of “I can’t afford it” (I also can’t “afford” cable TV. $100 a month for WHAT?)

        But I can’t “afford” the excess cost and excess fuel that comes with a full size pickup truck to get me to work and back. I mean if an F250 got 40 MPG and had similar expense to a sedan then I’d own it in a heartbeat, but you don’t gain wealth by blowing every penny you can on excess..

        except where the value proposition is huge. That was kind of the point with the ferrari. It was worth it at first because it was a dream. It was worth $100/mile if thats what it cost. I have no problem paying the bills, but I don’t know if I get $18/mile joy out of it with excessive downtime anymore… which is why I was wondering if there’s a car that would offer a better value proposition same could be said about the Truck. Sure I could go buy a full size DD truck today, but would I get 3x the joy out of a full size truck as I would in a nondescript budget sedan? no. Lifes all about tradeoffs.

        The OP pretty much suggests that the “cost” isn’t part of the decision. In that case, I consider premium trucks the ultimate “luxury” vehicle.

    • 0 avatar
      30-mile fetch

      “although I’m sure someone will try to tell me ostrich leather is nicer than cow leather, and LED pretend star ceiling liners is better than real stars through a sunroof??”

      No, but I will tell you that the “3” in F350 is not a trim level two slots higher than an F150.

      The F150 is cushy enough to be a luxury car substitute. The F350 rides and handles like an ocean liner on skateboard wheels down a cobblestone street. People buy it to move really heavy crap around. If really heavy crap doesn’t need to be moved around, I have no idea why anyone would subject themselves to DD one of these.

      • 0 avatar
        Drzhivago138

        “I have no idea why anyone would subject themselves to DD [an HD truck].”

        I’m from flyover country, where a lotta guys do (check out the book “How to Talk Minnesotan” for the meaning of “a lotta guys” and other useful phrases), and I don’t have any idea either. F-150s and other half-tons are isolated, but not wallowy and bouncy-flouncy like an old Cadillac or Lincoln. HD trucks are rough if you’re not pulling a gooseneck, and composed but still uncomfortably rigid if you are.

      • 0 avatar
        arach

        I DD’d an F350 lariat 6.4L for a few years and I LOVED it. I never had a concern about the suspension. In fact I love that the superduties don’t get a lot of body roll. They are on the stuff side, but I guess that never bothered me, and I almost like it more than a lot of body roll and suspension travel.

        I think the trucks improved drastically though after about 2008 or so. I remember how miserable driving a full size truck was in the 90s, but in the late 2000s I don’t mind it…

        But I respect everyone has their difference of opinions.

        The F350 isn’t “two slots higher” than an f150, but the resale is more than the price difference going from the 250 to the 350, and the super duties have a lot going for them in the reliability department as well as engine options departments.

  • avatar
    tankinbeans

    Would an S5 qualify for this discussion?

    I don’t have any interest in trucks and don’t need one. The few occasions where I’ve needed one I’ve rented or borrowed from a friend. Also, the styling of pretty much every truck out there nauseates me and the ones going full chrome are worse.

  • avatar
    MoparRocker74

    I wouldn’t want a ‘luxury’ ANYTHING, since that means muted grampa paint jobs, cubic yards of blingy chrome, a laundry list of gimmicky gadgets, and mandatory blingy hideous rims with rubberband tires. I wouldn’t be caught dead driving anything like that…it isn’t about perceptions its about my own tastes and style.

    $60-$70K? Ok…

    –Ram PowerWagon in electric blue and I’m gonna replicate the Macho PW concept.

    –HellCat Challenger.

    Pretty much the whole list of off the lot vehicles I would want for that price. Realistically…

    –Wrangler 2-door with AEV 345 Hemi conversion and set up with all the offroad and styling goodies I want.

    –Ram 1500 Rebel crewcab or Express single cab (4×4 Hemi) sent to AEV for the Recruit treatent

    –Challenger T/A Scat Pack with a whole heap of go fast goodies.

  • avatar
    PentastarPride

    I think I’d choose a Ram 3500 Laramie, though I really like the Ram 3500 Resistol from a few years back (’07-’08). Beautiful truck, better looking than today’s high trimmed trucks. I’ve got an ’06 2500, but it’s just a plain old Laramie. It’s got leather, heated seats, sunroof, navigation and a few other niceties, but to be sure it seems like in retrospect my truck is still not as luxed up as some of today’s “mid-level” semi-luxury trims, but that’s fine by me. I am not motivated to replace my truck, even if I had 60k in my “pay myself a car payment” fund, and I buy used anyway.

    For a car, which I’m assuming sedan, I would choose the 300. The Limited trim would be adequate for my wants and needs. The Pentastar V6 is a really capable engine so I’d probably choose it over the Hemi, though even with the Hemi in 300C trim the MSRP would be about $40-45k, so there would be NO current luxury car made today that I would choose in the $60-70k range (or higher).

  • avatar
    Jagboi

    I’d always take the car. It’s more versatile for me, I can put it in parkades and generally a lot easier to drive in traffic.

    If I was getting a truck, I’d want it to work, so a luxury truck is an oxymoron. I’d be getting a truck with rubber floor covering and an 8′ box, with the only “luxury” being AC. Something I can get dirty and hose out, the total opposite of a King Ranch (none of which have ever been near a real ranch)

  • avatar
    Dave M.

    I’ll take the F150 Lariat Supercab in Blue Jeans blue. I want 4×4, nav, all safety devices, trailering package, absolutely a sunroof. No running boards they look cheesy. I’d factory order it so I can get the King Ranch leather and LED headlights.

    Thanks for asking.

  • avatar
    brn

    I prefer cars for the way they drive. I’d never consider spending that kind of money on anything.

    Force me, and I’ll choose the truck. Trucks are durable. They outlast cars. Trucks can tow. Trucks are surprisingly comfortable. The mileage is sooo much better than it used to be. The only real downside is they’re freaking huge.

  • avatar
    OzCop

    Give me that extra 60 or 70 grand and I will head to the nearest Chevy dealer for a super deal on a Corvette GS…50 K is plenty to spend on truck…42 K on an end of years sale is even better…

  • avatar
    SD 328I

    Carving a corner, yes because that’s what luxury car owners do right?

    About the same for full-size truck owners working at a ranch dropping off bails of hay.

    The full-size truck makes the most sense actually, it’s probably the single most useful vehicle you can own.

    They also retain their resale value better than any other segment (historically & regardless of fuel prices), while luxury sedans have the highest depreciation.

    Factor in much better fuel economy these days for big trucks and you don’t really have much negative against them.

  • avatar
    DEVILLE88

    One word………………Escalade!!

  • avatar
    Flipper35

    I would take a high end truck over something like a Rolls/Bently/large Mercedes/BMW.

    Over a truck I would take a sporty car like a CTS-V or F type or for sure the new Alfa. SRT Charger probably as well.

    For those days I need to haul something, I would go to Menards or Lowes and rent a pickup.

  • avatar
    RocketScience

    Can I break the rules too?

    For 70 grand… I’d spend $35K on Mustang GT and $35K on a Tacoma for winter driving.


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