QOTD: Which Entrant Is Losing at the Game of Trucks?

Corey Lewis
by Corey Lewis
qotd which entrant is losing at the game of trucks

You hear it time and time again on the internet. “There are no bad cars today.” It’s proclaimed by those who lived through the Malaise Era and have personally experienced the build quality and reliability of an new Renault Le Car or Chevy Monza. And while things are most definitely better than they were, nothing’s perfect. Bring out your critical fingertips.

Today we’re going to talk about trucks, and the one which sticks out in your mind as a bit lesser than its competitors; the company which builds it could be doing a better job, you feel. Perhaps it’s down on quality, or lacking in technology, or its manufacturer hasn’t updated it as much as it should. How dare they do any of these things, here in the non-malaise year of 2019! Below is a list of the trucks available to North America this year, because you all shouldn’t go Googling around unsupervised.

Chevrolet Colorado


Chevrolet Silverado


Ford F-150


Ford Ranger


GMC Canyon


GMC Sierra


Honda Ridgeline


Nissan Frontier


Nissan Titan


RAM 1500


Toyota Tacoma


Toyota Tundra

Now, this list shows bias of the alphabetical persuasion, so watch out. Apparently the pictured Hummer H3T is no longer available. In the interest of keeping the list concise, heavy-duty variants are not broken out separately. It’s a short list which makes up a substantial part of the profits for some of these manufacturers (or virtually all of them, in the case of RAM). Truck sales matter! But we’re looking for a loser today in this, the Game of Trucks.

Which one is least deserving of the consumer’s precious dollars when pitched against its competitors?

[Image: General Motors]

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  • Zane Wylder Zane Wylder on Jan 10, 2019

    Don't get the appeal of the Ridgeline, last gen was "... WTH is it supposed to be?!" And the current is an Odyssey with a bed Nissan, they need to update the Frontier, give us the ones they got in other countries (seen a newer one in Aruba back in '17)

  • Gearhead77 Gearhead77 on Jan 11, 2019

    Titan would be my first choice, but honestly I think the Tundra is probably the worst new truck out there. At least Titan has seen some changes from the first gen trucks, Tundra is largely unchanged since it was introduced. Considering how much Ford, GM and FCA throw at their trucks in only a few years time, Toyota is way behind the curve. I understand the Tacoma's appeal, I don't get why you'd buy a Tundra. I say this as a Toyota owner. Not a fan of the second gen Ridgelines looks, but Honda must have sold enough to justify its existence. Honda is probably the most conservative company on taking chances, I think that speaks volumes about the Ridgeline. Yes, it's an Odyssey with a bed. That's all most of us need. A van that's occasionally a truck (that you can hose out). The wife likes her minivans, she won't entertain a Ridgeline though. And yes, I know you can put dirty and bulky stuff in a minivan, but cleaning it out is a pain.

  • Nrd515 I bought an '88 S10 Blazer with the 4.3. We had it 4 years and put just about 48K on it with a bunch of trips to Nebraska and S. Dakota to see relatives. It had a couple of minor issues when new, a piece of trim fell off the first day, and it had a seriously big oil leak soon after we got it. The amazinly tiny starter failed at about 40K, it was fixed under some sort of secret warranty and we got a new Silverado as a loaner. Other than that, and a couple of tires that blew when I ran over some junk on the road, it was a rock. I hated the dash instrumentation, and being built like a gorilla, it was about an inch and a half too narrow for my giant shoulders, but it drove fine, and was my second most trouble free vehicle ever, only beaten by my '82 K5 Blazer, which had zero issues for nearly 50K miles. We sold the S10 to a friend, who had it over 20 years and over 400,000 miles on the original short block! It had a couple of transmissions, a couple of valve jobs, a rear end rebuild at 300K, was stolen and vandalized twice, cut open like a tin can when a diabetic truck driver passed out(We were all impressed at the lack of rust inside the rear quarters at almost 10 years old, and it just went on and on. Ziebart did a good job on that Blazer. All three of his sons learned to drive in it, and it was only sent to the boneyard when the area above the windshield had rusted to the point it was like taking a shower when it rained. He now has a Jeep that he's put a ton of money into. He says he misses the S10's reliablity a lot these days, the Jeep is in the shop a lot.
  • Jeff S Most densely populated areas have emission testing and removing catalytic converters and altering pollution devices will cause your vehicle to fail emission testing which could effect renewing license plates. In less populated areas where emission testing is not done there would probably not be any legal consequences and the converter could either be removed or gutted both without having to buy specific parts for bypassing emissions. Tampering with emission systems would make it harder to resell a vehicle but if you plan on keeping the vehicle and literally running it till the wheels fall off there is not much that can be done if there is no emission testing. I did have a cat removed on a car long before mandatory emission testing and it did get better mpgs and it ran better. Also had a cat gutted on my S-10 which was close to 20 years old which increased performance and efficiency but that was in a state that did not require emission testing just that reformulated gas be sold during the Summer months. I would probably not do it again because after market converters are not that expensive on older S-10s compared to many of the newer vehicles. On newer vehicles it can effect other systems that are related to the operating and the running of the vehicle. A little harder to defeat pollution devices on newer vehicles with all the systems run by microprocessors but if someone wants to do it they can. This law could be addressing the modified diesels that are made into coal rollers just as much as the gasoline powered vehicles with cats. You probably will still be able to buy equipment that would modify the performance of a vehicles as long as the emission equipment is not altered.
  • ToolGuy I wonder if Vin Diesel requires DEF.(Does he have issues with Sulfur in concentrations above 15ppm?)
  • ToolGuy Presented for discussion: https://xroads.virginia.edu/~Hyper2/thoreau/civil.html
  • Kevin Ford can do what it's always done. Offer buyouts to retirement age employees, and transfers to operating facilities to those who aren't retirement age. Plus, the transition to electric isn't going to be a finger snap one time event. It's going to occur over a few model years. What's a more interesting question is: Where will today's youth find jobs in the auto industry given the lower employment levels?
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