2000 Full-Size Pickup Truck Comparison Test

  • Full Review
  • Pricing & Specs
  • Road Tests
  • Comparison (1)
  • Long-Term

2000 Ford F-150 Extended Cab

(4.6L V8 4x4 5-speed Manual)

  • Comparison Test
  • Editor Picks
  • Evaluation - Drive
  • Evaluation - Ride
  • Evaluation - Design
  • Evaluation - Cargo/Passenger Space
  • Features List
  • Final Rankings
  • 2000 Ford F-150 Specs and Performance
  • 2000 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 Specs and Performance
  • 2000 Toyota Tundra Specs and Performance
  • 2000 Dodge Ram Pickup 1500 Specs and Performance

Did you hear about the recent Congressional Bill H.R. 2488? Sponsored by that lovable Senator Jesse Helms, it has been dubbed the
"True American" bill. From now on, all citizens must buy a full-size pickup truck and use it to make frequent trips to Home Depot, tow large fishing boats and help friends and neighbors move. All Americans who don't comply will be deported to France to drive Fiat Puntos and drink prissy
8-ounce bottles of Evian.

In terms of vehicles, it doesn't get any more American than pickups. Barely causing a sales ripple in the rest of the world, full-size trucks are hugely popular here (in case you haven't noticed). Once just an agrarian workhorse, pickups have moved mainstream, occupying both ranchland and suburban driveways at the same time. The top two selling vehicles in the U.S. are full-size pickups. And why not? Today's trucks can do almost everything a car can do, but they also have the added capabilities of towing, hauling and off-road prowess.

Edmunds.com's previous test of full-size pickups was in 1997. It included the Chevrolet Silverado, the Dodge Ram 1500 and the Ford F-150. The onset of the new millennium seemed like a good time for another test. Chevrolet redesigned the Silverado for 1999, and both the Dodge and the Ford have received minor updates since 1997. There's also the new 2000 Tundra, Toyota's first true full-size pickup (the T-100 doesn't count).

We collected examples of each truck for our four-way comparison test. All of our test trucks came in a four-door extended-cab short-bed configuration with four-wheel drive, V8 power and automatic transmissions. Pricing was surprisingly similar, with as-tested pricing for all four vehicles being in the low 30s.

Since full-size trucks have so many uses, we felt we had to be rather general in our evaluation. We were looking for: 1) a strong powertrain that could handle heavy payloads; 2) comfortable rear seating for children or adults; 3) secure handling with a good ride quality on the pavement;
4) sure-footedness on challenging terrain or during slippery conditions;
5) a wide range of customizable configurations and optional features. In short, we wanted to find the truck that was the best at doing everything.

Beyond our normal testing and evaluation procedures that we perform for every comparison test, we also evaluated the vehicles in terms of how they performed when attacking off-road trails and how they drove with 1,000-pound payloads. We also wanted to test the vehicles in terms of towing, but not all of our test vehicles came equipped with tow packages, so we had to scratch that component of our test.

So, are you ready to find out which full-size pickup Edmunds.com recommends? Is the excitement frothing inside you so much that you can't push your computer's mouse button fast enough? Testing trucks is what we do; we do it for you. If you don't like it, go to France.

Fourth Place - Dodge Ram 1500 4x4 Quad Cab SB

If you were to trace pickup DNA lineage back millions of years, back before dinosaurs and Dick Clark, back to the original bigus truckus pickup erectus, you would find the Ram to be closest in kin. This is the beefy truck all Dodge Dakotas aspire to be. The only thing with more testosterone is an AM General Hummer, or possibly a WWF wrestler during SummerSlam.

Our test truck was a 2000 Ram 1500 4x4 Quad Cab Sport. Its base price was the lowest in the test, but a long list of optional equipment quickly jacked up the price. This equipment included Customer Preferred Package 26G, the Sport Group, the Trailer Tow group, the Leather Interior Group, the Off Road Group, and the 5.9-liter V8 with four-speed automatic transmission.

The Ram hasn't changed much since its debut in 1994. The Quad Cab body style was introduced in 1998. For 2000, Dodge upgraded the front suspension and brakes and introduced the Off-Road Group.

Given that the truck's styling hasn't changed much in seven years, it was surprising to find that our staff still thought it was the best-looking truck of the four. The exterior is aggressive and purposeful, having a hardcore personality not too distant from an 18-wheel Freightliner (Freightliner is also owned by DaimlerChrysler, incidentally). Our truck's optional Sport Appearance Group and 17-inch wheels from the Off-Road Group were also beneficial. Fitting for the brute image, the Ram had the largest cargo bed out of our quartet of trucks.

Under our truck's muscular hood was Dodge's 5.9-liter V8. It produces 245 horsepower at 4,000 rpm and 335 foot-pounds of torque at 3,200 rpm. Dodge's press material states that the Sport Group option (which our test truck had) adds another five horsepower and 10 more foot-pounds of torque.

The Ram had the largest engine (the Toyota's 4.7-liter V8 was the smallest) of the four trucks, but it also had the heaviest curb weight. Not known for its eagerness to rev, the Ram's engine often felt asthmatic in comparison to the other trucks. This sensation was backed up on the test track, as the Dodge posted the slowest numbers in both zero-to-60 acceleration and quarter-mile acceleration.

The transmission didn't impress, either. Many of us felt the Dodge delayed both upshifts and downshifts too much given the amount of throttle input. And when it did shift, the engagement was not as smooth as the other vehicles. Adding insult to injury, the Ram's fuel mileage during our test was considerably worse than the other three trucks.

Four-wheel-drive activation was done via a floor-mounted transfer case lever. Operation was straightforward, but Dodge doesn't offer an electronically shifting transfer case like Chevy, Ford and Toyota.

At this point we should bring up the Off-Road Group that was featured on our test truck. Some trucks' "off-road packages" include nothing more than a 4x4 decal and plastic fender flares. Not so with the Ram. Dodge equips it with an impressive array of hardcore off-roading hardware. When we showed our test truck the off-road trails we were going to take it on, it snorted and replied, "That's all you got? I can do this with two wheels tied behind my back."

While the trail we used wasn't challenging enough to push each truck to its limit, we all felt that the Ram was clearly the most capable truck in our group. For people planning on traveling through rugged terrain, the Off-Road Group is worth the price.

For more mundane tasks, however, the Off Road Group's negatives outweighed its positives (when keeping in mind the broad focus of this test). The Off Road Group precludes the Ram's optional four-wheel ABS, leaving only rear-wheel ABS. We weren't aware of this until we unknowingly locked up the Ram's front wheels during our first 60-to-zero braking run. Successive runs were poor since we had to use the technique of threshold braking. The Off-Road Group doesn't have four-wheel ABS because professional off-road drivers find ABS to be problematic when driving down hills covered by soft dirt or sand.

We also found that the Off Road Group's recalibrated suspension gave the Ram a very stiff ride quality on city streets. The Ram's solid front axle might be a benefit while driving over rocks, but on pavement, it didn't absorb road shock nearly as well as the other trucks' front independent suspensions. On the freeway, the steering required constant monitoring and adjustment. Loading the box with 1,000 pounds of cement mix or driving with five people aboard did little to soften the ride.

The Ram's cabin is simple in design, but it works. Wind and road noise were high when the Ram was in motion, but the truck was otherwise quite agreeable. Most of the controls were easy to find, including the climate control system placed to the left of the stereo (though the gearshift lever sometimes got in the way).

Interior material quality was commendable for a truck, no doubt helped by our test vehicle's optional Leather Interior Group. This package also granted the truck a power driver's seat, something none of the other trucks had. But power or not, most of our staff didn't find the driver's seat to be very comfortable. Rear passengers had plenty of hip and shoulder room, but the overall experience was tainted by a very thin seatback and minimal legroom.

For storage, the Ram relies heavily on a large center armrest that also opens up. The armrest--which folds up to accommodate a sixth passenger--is wide but not deep. A convenient pull-out tray houses the two adjustable cupholders.

In the end, the Ram's hardcore personality was its undoing. While the other pickups in this test have been updated recently to strike a balance between utility and usability, the Ram stubbornly refuses to be anything more than a truck. We can see this being a draw to certain people, but we felt all of the other trucks in our test managed to be just as or nearly as capable, without the negative side effects.

Word on the street is that the Ram will get new sheetmetal for the '02 model year and will ride on a new platform. New truck engines and transmissions are also said to be in the works. If you are considering a Dodge Ram, you might want to keep this in mind.

Second Opinions

This truck really excels in the dirt. Too bad the Ram's V8 can't deliver what the bulging muscles suggest. And who decided to give this truck rear ABS only? This truck is for hardcore truck people, or those young enough to find the back-cracking suspension amusing. -- Dan Gardner

I was very disappointed in the Ram, partly because I like the Dakota so much. Although it gives pretense of being a "luxury" truck with its power seat controls, leather interior and faux wood, this is a truck and constantly reminds you of it. I got a backache from the harsh ride and the Magnum V8 didn't impress as it should, given its size. -- Liz Kim

This is the true truck of the test. It's rough riding, it rattles and it's difficult to get in and out of. For those who want a rough-and-tumble pickup, the Ram is the answer. It is the macho truck. But for myself, I'll take a truck that doesn't require a kidney belt. -- Scott Mead

The Ram was the best-looking truck of the test, which says plenty since the design has remained virtually unchanged since its introduction. The 17-inch wheels on our test truck looked great, and the monochromatic paint scheme provided additional attitude. -- Christian Wardlaw

Stereo Evaluation - 2000 Dodge Ram

Ranking in class: Second

System Score: 5.0

Components. The system consists of a pair of 4-inch full-range speakers in the back doors, along with a set of large woofs in the front doors mated with tweeters in the A pillars. AM/FM/Cassette/CD inhabits the dash. Buttons on the radio are too small, too crowded together, and too flat to be really desirable. In fact, the whole faceplate has a very "flat" topography, making it hard to use and difficult to differentiate one button from another.

Performance. Disappointing. Although the speaker placement is much improved over, say, the Ford F-150, the system still doesn't perform up to expectations. As with the Chevy entry, this vehicle appears to be vastly underpowered. Add road noise to that, and you have a formula for lousy sound. I did like the tweeters, which were perfectly mounted in the A pillars and filled the cabin with clear, unsullied highs; still, Dodge doesn't provide them with enough of a power amp to get them up and dancing. Disappointing and confusing, since other Chrysler stereos I've tested have had more than ample power. This one doesn't.

Conclusion. Worst feature: anemic power amp. Best feature: tweeters. Perfectly placed and aimed--among the best I've seen. If this system had the beefy power amp from the F-150, watch out! As it is, though, it's meek and mild. Needs more power!

Third Place - Toyota Tundra 4x4 SR5 V8 Access Cab

If the Tundra were a preschooler, we would paste a gold star to its loveable pug-nosed face. In only its first year, the Tundra showed us it has the cojones to stand tall against the big boys from Detroit.

It might seem that the Tundra came out of nowhere, but it's actually an outgrowth of Toyota's first full-size truck effort, the T100. The T100 was a rather unloved truck, stuck with a V6 when everybody else had a V8. This is America, son! You need a V8 to play!

So a V8 the Tundra has. The Tundra's engine is very similar to the V8 used in the Land Cruiser and Lexus LX 470. Displacing only 4.7 liters, it was the smallest engine in our test. But thanks to its 32-valve DOHC configuration and advanced engine architecture, it produces 245 horsepower at 4,800 rpm and 315 foot-pounds of torque at 3,400 rpm.

At the test track, our Tundra 4x4 SR5 V8 Access Cab went from zero to 60 in 8.6 seconds and passed the quarter mile in 16.7 seconds at 85.1 mph. The Toyota had the fastest quarter-mile trap speed, and it was second only to the Silverado in zero-to-60 and quarter-mile acceleration.

Step on the throttle, and the Tundra will emit an impressively elegant yet aggressive growl when revved hard. It doesn't quite have the low-end punch of the Silverado (even more noticeable with the 1,000-pound load of cement mix jammed in the bed), but the Toyota's power delivery is exceptionally smooth. Our staff felt it was the most satisfying engine of the gathered vehicles for urban commutes and light-duty applications. The only problem we encountered was occasional hard starting.

The Tundra's four-speed automatic transmission operates without fault. It always seemed to pick the correct gear and operated unobtrusively under nearly all driving conditions. (Other than saying you love its personality and that its butt isn't big at all, this is perhaps the best praise you can give an automatic).

Like the Chevy and the Ford, our Toyota was equipped with an electronically controlled transfer case. Engaging four-wheel drive was relatively easy, and the Tundra did an acceptable job of covering ground during the off-road portion of the test. All of us felt that the Toyota would be the first to balk if we had presented it more challenging terrain (the optional Toyota Racing Development off-road package being of unknown value). Additionally, the Tundra was the only truck in our group lacking a limited-slip differential, and Toyota does not offer one as an option.

We're curious how a Tundra equipped with the TRD suspension would behave. In stock form, the suspension is rather soft. Around town, this trait made the Toyota fairly comfortable and "car-like." But on the freeway, the Tundra bobbed and floated over pavement undulations. Loading the bed with 1,000 pounds of cement mix only helped somewhat. Some of our editors also felt that the Toyota's body flexed more than the other trucks.

When performing skidpad testing, we found that the Toyota understeered heavily. The slow steering required lots of steering input while driving the truck in the slalom test. Nonetheless, the Toyota's smaller size helped it slither through the slalom at 56.9 mph, the fastest time of our group. Overall, we'd prefer a stiffer suspension, but we'd still take the Tundra's stock suspension over the Ram. (In the Ram's defense, our test truck was equipped with the optional Off-Road package and light-truck tires, both of which probably made the truck's ride harsher than normal).

The Tundra's smaller exterior size pays additional dividends beyond the slalom. The Tundra is definitely bigger than the old T100, but park the Tundra next to an F-150, and you can instantly see how the Toyota is still relatively small, especially in terms of height and wheelbase. The Toyota actually fit in our editor-in-chief's garage, whereas the Ford and Dodge were grounded to the street. It was also easier to maneuver in mall parking lots and narrow city streets.

Despite being nearly 10 inches shorter than the Chevy, the Tundra still offers a 76.5-inch short bed and decent cabin accommodations. The front seats are mounted low to the floor, creating headroom comparable to the other trucks. The low seats also make the Toyota relatively easy to get in and out of.

The Toyota's smaller size does negatively affect the back seat, however. The materials and cushions in back were comfortable, but there were noticeable deficits in both legroom and hip room. When we put three adults in back, they complained about the lack of cabin width and the minimal room underneath the front seats for their feet.

Overall interior design reminded us of many other Toyota products. The steering wheel and much of the switchgear is corporate parts-bin material, but it all operates with typical fluidness. As it's a Toyota, we were expecting a higher level of quality materials, but we were disappointed to find that they were about equal to the Chevy's. The Toyota also came up short on useful interior storage. The center console was noticeably smaller than the ones in the other trucks.

If the Toyota's only problem were a stunted interior, it probably would have won this comparison test. But a lack of optional features and equipment jammed a dagger in the Toyota's heart. Full-size trucks typically have long lists of available options in order to fulfill consumers' different needs. The Tundra's is much more limited, missing items like upgraded electrical/cooling components, snow-plow prep packages and heavy-duty suspension pieces. The Toyota is also the only truck here that can't be ordered in extended cab/long bed configuration.

Still, for many people, those extras could be superfluous. And for those truck buyers looking for a quick and simple purchase, the Tundra's short order list could be a benefit. Toyota's first true full-size truck is a very good one, especially for the general consumer rather than the contractor or construction worker. For the Personal Picks component of this test, the Toyota tied for first place with the Ford. Our editors clearly liked the Tundra, and our test truck's good build quality was a solid indicator that Toyota's reputation for reliability is intact. But this is a comparison test, and since we're not "Motor Trend," not all the trucks could be winners. The Toyota inherits third place.

Second Opinions

As the only non-domestic alternative (until Nissan brings its full-size to the market), the Tundra represents an interesting alternative to the other three. It's got rock-solid build quality that exceeds the others. The engine is silky smooth and is mated to a great transmission. But it rides like a Buick and dealing with a heavy payload or even regular bumps is not this truck's strongpoint. To me, the Tundra seems like a good match for Southern Californians. You don't even need four-wheel drive here. But Los Angeles isn't where most full-size trucks are sold, and I think the domestics are better matched to the primary full-size truck markets. -- Dan Gardner

The Tundra felt the most car-like. Yes, the suspension is soft, but I prefer it to the harshness of the Ram. It's also smaller than the others, and thus more manageable. The true appeal of this truck is that you get the full-sized utility without having to sacrifice car comfort. -- Liz Kim

The suspension is very car-like in that it is very softly sprung compared to the other trucks in our test. This made it palatable on rough city pavement. The V8 provided more than enough power, with the best grunt coming between 2,200 rpm and 5,000 rpm. Too bad the Tundra is saddled with Toyota's all-too-common numb steering rack that made it difficult to sense what the suspension and steering were doing when traveling over rocky terrain. -- Scott Mead

I found this to be a very uncomfortable vehicle, as I do most Toyota products. The seat is thinly padded and mounted too low to the floor. There is no seat height adjuster, and the seat doesn't travel far enough back in its track for optimal legroom. In fact, the cabin isn't as comfortable as a Dodge Dakota, much less any of the Tundra's direct competition. Toyota sells the Tundra on the following attributes: low price, refined engine, tidy size and a reputation for bulletproof reliability. But if I really had a need for a full-size pickup, I think I'd want a more serious, more comfortable, more capable workhorse that I could tailor to my specific needs. -- Christian Wardlaw

Stereo Evaluation - 2000 Toyota Tundra

Ranking in class: Third

System Score: 4.0

Components. System consists of 4-inch speakers in the rear doors, with 5-inch speakers in the front doors coupled with tweeters in the upper portion. Electronics include AM/FM/Cassette/CD.

Performance. Not a very impressive stereo. The amp is weak and of a very poor quality -- it distorts massively above half gain. Unfortunately, the speakers aren't much better. The 4-inch speakers in the back doors are tucked under the armrests in an awkward and really lame position; they're largely useless. The front speakers aren't much better. The mid-bass driver is partially blocked by the door panel, cutting off sound. Not very good. The tweeters are okay, well positioned and accessible. There's not much nice I can say about sound quality in this vehicle. The tweeters do help quite a bit, but they're fighting a losing battle against the underpowered amp and the lousy speakers elsewhere in the system.

Conclusion. Worst feature: speakers, front or rear, take your pick. Best feature: a nicely appointed radio, with decent ergonomics. Large display and an easily readable readout. Better than most in this class.

Second Place - Chevrolet Silverado 4x4 LS 1500 SB

Let the hate e-mail begin. You can't expect to put a big "two" next to Chevrolet's full-size truck and not raise the ire of proud Bow-Tie owners. And there are a lot of those, seeing as how combined sales of 2000 Chevrolet Silverados and GMC Sierras are nearly equal to Ford's top-selling F-Series line. But at least allow us to present our logic before firing off your nastiest prose. The Silverado came exceptionally close to winning this test, and its strengths just might suit your particular needs better than the other three trucks in our test.

With much hoopla, Chevrolet introduced its redesigned Silverado in 1999. There was a reason for this, mainly that the previous truck was getting rather ripe and stinky compared to the newer F-150 and Dodge Ram. The '99 Silverado's highlights included an all-new frame, new engine choices, better driving dynamics and more interior room. For 2000, Chevy has added a fourth door to extended-cab models and improved horsepower on the 4.8-liter and 5.3-liter engines.

Our test truck had the larger 5.3-liter V8. It generates 285 horsepower at 5,200 rpm and 325 foot-pounds of torque at 4,000 rpm. At the test track, the Silverado walked away with top acceleration honors, running from zero to 60 in 8.4 seconds and clearing the quarter mile in 16.5 seconds. Our editors backed up the results from the instrumented testing with their own subjective scoring, praising the Chevy for both engine and transmission performance.

While both the Dodge and Toyota felt winded when we loaded their cargo boxes with 1,000 pounds of cement mix, the Chevy's abundant low-end torque and useful powerband kept acceleration reasonable. The transmission features a "Tow/Haul" mode which delays upshifts and firms up the shift feel. At first, we dismissed the Tow/Haul as a marketing gimmick because the activation button is located on the end of the gearshift lever just where an overdrive button is usually placed. But with the cargo bed full, we noticed a distinct difference in the transmission's behavior between normal mode and Tow/Haul mode.

The added cargo didn't present much of a problem to the Chevy's suspension, either. Ride quality wasn't too soft or too harsh, and the shocks did a good job of keeping extra body roll in check. At the test track, the Chevy posted the best skidpad rating and the second-best slalom speed. And while instrumented testing didn't register an advantage to the Chevy's four-wheel disc brakes when unloaded (the only truck in the test to have them), the brakes felt confidence-inspiring with the box loaded. We'd like them even better if Chevrolet could reduce the ABS system's racket and brake pedal pulsation.

During the off-road portion of our test, the Chevrolet was about equal in ability to the Ford. Our test truck's Z71 Off-Road package and LT 245/75R16 tires were obvious benefits here. Engaging the four-wheel-drive system was a simple matter of pushing a button on the dash, and the Chevrolet's 4WD was the only one to have an automatic mode.

OK, so the Silverado has a great engine, a capable suspension and it is composed when hauling and blazing new trails; why didn't the Chevy win? Well, the Silverado unfortunately fell into the same trap that we've seen with many other recent GM products: a great drivetrain pulled down by lackluster styling and iffy build quality.

Actually, the Chevy's build quality wasn't horrible, and our editors scored the Dodge even worse in this department. But, somehow, you kind of expect the macho-man Dodge to have an unfinished feel, whereas the Chevy is supposed to be the more upscale and real-world truck. Mistakes on our test vehicle included incorrectly fitted weatherstripping that caused a major wind leak from the driver's door, mismatched panel gaps around the headlight area and interior trim pieces that could be wiggled or pulled apart.

Another one of our staffs' complaints centered on the exterior styling, or, more correctly, the lack thereof. Chevy says it purposely styled the truck this way because that's what its customers wanted. That may be the case, but to us it just looked too much like the old Silverado. The optional Sportside body didn't help matters, either. Is there some way to graft the Dodge's exterior sheetmetal over the Chevy's?

The interior also had some problems. Our LS test truck came with equipment like air conditioning, cruise control, a leather-wrapped steering wheel, power windows and locks, keyless remote and an upgraded stereo. Too bad the LS trim doesn't improve the cheap headliner, the "mouse fur" material used on the optional reclining bucket seats, the conservative interior design or the excessive use of hard plastic on the dash. All of the trucks had hard plastic dashboards, but the Chevy's seemed the most insubstantial and most tempting to pull apart with your bare hands.

We did find the Silverado's cabin to be comfortable, however, and the optional seats were praised for their good side-bolstering, foldable armrests and integrated seatbelts. The Silverado also presented a logical control layout and useful interior storage. And while none of the trucks provided limo-like rear seating, our staff felt the Chevy's back seat was the best at accommodating passengers thanks to the rear headrests, four cupholders and decent shoulder room.

All qualities combined, the Silverado comes out smelling much better than the Silverado before it. It also came very close to winning this test. Less than a percentage point, in fact. So for all those Bow-Tie lovers out there, please redirect your pointy little e-mails toward the GM people responsible for interior and exterior design. If they had spent more time doing their job instead of counting pennies and taking extra-long lunch breaks, your truck could have been the winner instead of the runner-up.

Second Opinion

Perfectly suited for aggressive shifting. The suspension is a tad stiff, but it does seem to strike a good middle ground in terms of ride quality. Too bad fit and finish are a step below the others. I'd take a Sierra over a Silverado as it is better-looking and has a more luxurious interior. -- Dan Gardner

The Chevrolet was the stupidest-looking truck of the test. The grille and flared fenders make it look like a woman with an oversized butt. However, engine power is copious, and I got a much more secure feeling from mashing the brakes than I did in the Ram. Plus it's got that cool name which evokes images of the Old West and cowboys. -- Liz Kim

I'm sure the Dodge is ultimately more capable, but I actually thought the Chevrolet was the best-performing truck in terms of our limited off-road excursions. I was disappointed with the old interior design and lack of quality materials. Chevrolet really needs to add a grab handle for the driver, as ingress/egress is difficult (especially with the Z71 suspension package). Chevrolet builds a great no-frills work truck, but don't expect the valet to park it in the front row. -- Scott Mead

For a full-sized truck, the cabin felt tight to me. Part of this impression had to do with the gray interior of our test truck, as well as the center console section that connects to the power part of the dash. Overall, I like the ergonomic layout and design of the Silverado's innards, but I'd opt for a bench seat and a tan interior. Oh, and GM has got to do something about the interior; it reeks of cost-cutting. -- Christian Wardlaw

Stereo Evaluation - 2000 Chevy Silverado

Ranking in class: First

System Score: 6.0

Components. System consists of 4x6 full-range drivers in the rear doors, along with separate 6-inch bass and tweeters built into the upper portion of the front doors. Electronics include an AM/FM/single-play CD with a hidden power amplifier. Ergonomics: poor. The controls overall are too bunched together and lacking in different feel to be of optimum use. I found them difficult to use while driving. The little fader and balance knobs are too small, too close together, and hard to use.

Performance. I have to say that I was unimpressed with all four of the sound systems in this comparo. I hated this one the least, which I guess makes it the winner. Maybe a pickup truck isn't expected to have a nice sound system, since the damn tires are so noisy it's lucky if you can hear the music. Neither the speakers nor the amplifier appear to be of a decent quality in this system from GM. The amp clips at about half gain and gets worse from there. The system has an overly boomy bass which drowns out the highs. It's just not very impressive.

Conclusion. Best feature: speaker woof and tweet combos in the front doors are nicely placed and aimed. Reminds me of the setup in the Ford Focus. Worst feature: suck-ass power amp that runs out of steam halfway to town. Let me ask you a question: if you were designing a vehicle that you knew was going to be noisy as hell on the road, wouldn't you want to give it extra power? To this question, Chevy answers with a resounding NO. This system could have benefited significantly from a heftier power amp, and I marked off heavily for them not answering the call. Poor job, Chevy. What did I like? Well, the speaker setup is nicely done, but needs about twice the power.

First Place - Ford F-150 4x4 XLT SuperCab Styleside SB

One of our editors referred to the Ford F-150 as the "Honda Accord of full-size trucks." We're not sure how happy F-150 owners will be to hear their truck compared to Honda's bowl-of-tapioca family sedan, but the statement does have some truth to it.

In almost all of our comparison tests, there are vehicles that might not excel in many areas, but they don't have any glaring faults, either. These vehicles usually do very well in our comparison tests. It's a simple formula, but it's also one that is very difficult to pull off. Honda manages to do it with its Accord. The same goes for Ford and its F-150.

It would seem that the American public agrees. Not only has the F-Series pickup been the best-selling truck in recent memory, it has also been the best-selling vehicle period. Americans are buying more F-Series trucks than any other vehicle.

The current F-150 has been around since the '97 model year. Back then, Ford's break from traditional pickup styling caught many people off guard. But four years later, we feel that the F-150 shape has aged quite well. In fact, we agreed that the F-150 was the best-looking truck in our test behind the Dodge.

The F-150 is basically the same truck as it was in '97, though Ford has been making minor updates ever since. For 2000, Ford tinkered with the SuperCab's rear seating and added an overhead console to XLT and Lariat models. Our test truck was a 2000 F-150 XLT 4x4 SuperCab Styleside. The base price for a XLT is around $26,000, but a long list of options pushed the price past $30,000. One option we could have definitely done without was the dopey soft tonneau cover. It was difficult to install and remove, and became a pain when we were loading and unloading the bed with 1,000 pounds of cement mix.

The optional 5.4-liter V8 was much more to our liking, however. The biggest engine available in the F-150, it produces 260 horsepower at 4,500 rpm and 350 foot-pounds of torque at 2,500 rpm. This is 25 more foot-pounds of torque than the Chevy and 35 more than the Toyota. The advantage in torque didn't hold up at the test track, though, as the Ford was marginally slower than both during acceleration runs. In terms of power delivery, the Ford's V8 felt similar to the Silverado's. It didn't quite have the Chevy's low-end pop, but it did top it in terms of smoothness and quietness. The four-speed automatic was sometimes a little slow when asked to downshift, but otherwise it operated without a fuss.

An electronically controlled transfer case doesn't come standard on the F-150, so you'll have to pay an extra $160 to get the nifty little 4x4 selector dial on the dash. Like the Dodge and Chevy, our F-150 test truck had an optional off-road package and a limited-slip rear differential. The Ford made short work of the off-road portion of our test, and ultimately felt about equal to the Chevy in terms of maximum off-road performance.

Even with the stiffer shocks and 17-inch light-truck tires, the suspension adapted well to use on city streets and highways. Ride quality was acceptable when driving over rough pavement, and its freeway ride was a nice compromise between the rough-riding Dodge and marshmallow-like Toyota. On curvy roads, the F-150 was stable and confidence-inspiring. Our staff also gave the Ford's steering high marks, noting its quick responses, though one editor said he found it difficult to keep the Ford going in a straight line without making numerous steering adjustments. For normal use on both pavement and dirt, we found the F-150 and Silverado to be near equals.

The only problems we encountered with the Ford were when we loaded up the cargo box with cement mix. The engine wasn't overburdened, but the Ford's suspension seemed to become more unsettled than the Chevy's when we drove it over large bumps. Additionally, the Ford's brakes required noticeably more effort because of the extra weight. Even with the bed unloaded, we noticed minor brake fade and inconsistent stopping distances at the test track.

While none of these truck's interiors were outstanding, Ford seems to have crafted the most tolerable one. Hard plastics abound, but the two shades of tan match well with the black plastic used for the center of the dash. Styling was the most modern of the group, and we liked the large and easy-to-find buttons and controls. The big center storage bin was useful for holding CDs and cassette tapes, though we did notice that the glove box wasn't very large.

The optional captain's chairs provided the best comfort of our group, with our editors commenting that the broad seating surfaces seemed perfect for the beefy construction workers that Ford always shows driving its trucks during TV commercials. Too bad these same construction workers won't be as happy sitting in back, as the F-150's rear seat isn't as comfortable as the Silverado's and has less legroom and headroom.

Entry and exit was no problem on our test truck, thanks to the optional cab step bars (without them, the climb would be equal to the tall Dodge). While driving the F-150 on the freeway, there was minimal wind and road noise and no squeaks or rattles. Overall, we found the truck to have good build quality, though the Toyota was still slightly better. (Interestingly, a Ford Explorer that we obtained for our recent SUV test was lambasted for its poor build quality).

The F-150 is an interesting vehicle. It's a four-year-old design. It doesn't wow you with glitz or stunning athletic ability. It doesn't cleanly dominate the other trucks in any one particular area. But like the Accord, it doesn't have an Achilles' heel, and that allowed it to take the top position in this test -- barely. Think F-150 over Silverado in triple overtime. But a win is a win is a win, thank you very much, and Ford gets the bragging rights that come along with it.

Second Opinion

The Ford certainly looks the most modern of the group. It also has a decent interior with good seats. It manages to do everything fairly well, and nothing terribly. As this is the best-selling truck in America, all Ford has to do is make sure they don't screw it up. For the last four years, I think Ford has succeeded in that mission. -- Dan Gardner

The F-150 managed to provide the best combination of ride quality and real full-size utility. The V8's power was very smooth, and the suspension was acceptable enough to give me confidence during highway and street driving. I also like how the Ford doesn't scream "manly testosterone!" like the Ram does. -- Liz Kim

It's no wonder that the F-150 has been the best-selling pickup for years. The Ford exhibited great off-road prowess and good linear torque from the Triton V8. Unlike the Dodge, the Ford feels like a Crown Victoria that is capable of hauling a 21-foot Bayliner. Would I recommend it? You bet. Ford builds a winner. -- Scott Mead

Is the Ford outstanding in any respect? No. Does it fall on its face in any respect? Aside from the annoying tonneau cover on our test truck, no. The F-150 is an excellent blend of style, comfort, ability and overall competence. Plus, you can buy one to suit any need, from the supercharged SVT Lightning to the Super Duty F-350 Crew Cab to the F-150 SuperCrew in between. That's why it's my favorite, and the one I'd recommend to full-size pickup buyers. -- Christian Wardlaw

Stereo Evaluation - 2000 Ford F-150

Ranking in class: Fourth (last)

System Score: 3.5

Components. System consists of 6-inch full-range speakers in the front and rear doors. There are no tweeters or subwoofers in this system. Electronics include an AM/FM/CD and, as usual with all Ford systems, a kick-ass amplifier tucked away somewhere. This thing really cranks! The radio has nice ergonomics--buttons are well-spaced and logically laid out, readout is bright green, faceplate makes sense.

Performance. I wish this system had better speakers. This was the only vehicle in this test without separate tweeters, and the system suffers as a result. The sound is very dull. Female vocals sound boxy, muted, subdued and muffled. Likewise acoustic strings, which come off like the musicians are performing in the next room. Just not very impressive at all. Too bad, because the power amp kicks butt and the rest of the system rocks. If this system had even decent tweeters in the front doors or A pillars, along with slightly better speakers all around, it would probably have won the class. As it is, it's just mediocre. It doesn't make sense for Ford to match this power amp with such lousy speakers. In the future, they should save their money.

Conclusion. Best feature: as with most Ford systems, the power amp. Worst feature: lack of tweeters. The radio had a very user-friendly feel and nice cosmetics. Too bad they didn't give this system better speakers.

Conclusion

The interesting thing about full-size pickups is that people use them for so many different tasks. When we evaluate family sedans, the intended purpose of those vehicles is pretty clear: haul kids, offer good safety and have at least a mediocre level of performance and style. But the type of truck that a budding construction worker would want is probably quite different than the one a suburban family with two kids, a dog and a couple of personal watercraft would want.

Given that, a strong argument could be made for each of these trucks. Based on the final score (it finished last in every category), the Ram was the wooden spoon of the test. But even then, it could be a good truck for somebody who needs a rugged vehicle to haul equipment or make frequent trips into the wilderness.

The remaining trucks were all very close in final score. The Toyota is the most "car-like," and is best suited for somebody who needs a truck primarily for urban commuting and light- to medium-duty hauling and towing. This was just fine with us, as not everybody needs a big and burly pickup.

The Chevrolet and the Ford ended up with better scores than the Toyota because they were broader in spectrum, able to nearly match the Toyota in comfort, as well as the Ram in off-road ability. And while they both have different personalities -- the Silverado bland but beefy, the F-150 more refined -- we were surprised how equally capable they were. This is reflected in the final score: 78.4 to 79.1. These are both great pickups. Either could be the best truck for you.

Stereo Evaluations

2000 Chevy Silverado
2000 Dodge Ram
2000 Toyota Tundra
2000 Ford F-150


2000 Chevy Silverado

Ranking in class: First

System Score: 6.0

Components. System consists of 4x6 full-range drivers in the rear doors, along with separate 6-inch bass and tweeters built into the upper portion of the front doors. Electronics include an AM/FM/single-play CD with a hidden power amplifier. Ergonomics: poor. The controls overall are too bunched together and lacking in different feel to be of optimum use. I found them difficult to use while driving. The little fader and balance knobs are too small, too close together, and hard to use.

Performance. I have to say that I was unimpressed with all four of the sound systems in this comparo. I hated this one the least, which I guess makes it the winner. Maybe a pickup truck isn't expected to have a nice sound system, since the damn tires are so noisy it's lucky if you can hear the music. Neither the speakers nor the amplifier appear to be of a decent quality in this system from GM. The amp clips at about half gain and gets worse from there. The system has an overly boomy bass which drowns out the highs. It's just not very impressive.

Conclusion. Best feature: speaker woof and tweet combos in the front doors are nicely placed and aimed. Reminds me of the setup in the Ford Focus. Worst feature: suck-ass power amp that runs out of steam halfway to town. Let me ask you a question: if you were designing a vehicle that you knew was going to be noisy as hell on the road, wouldn't you want to give it extra power? To this question, Chevy answers with a resounding NO. This system could have benefited significantly from a heftier power amp, and I marked off heavily for them not answering the call. Poor job, Chevy. What did I like? Well, the speaker setup is nicely done, but needs about twice the power.

2000 Dodge Ram

Ranking in class: Second

System Score: 5.0

Components. The system consists of a pair of 4-inch full-range speakers in the back doors, along with a set of large woofs in the front doors mated with tweeters in the A pillars. AM/FM/Cassette/CD inhabits the dash. Buttons on the radio are too small, too crowded together, and too flat to be really desirable. In fact, the whole faceplate has a very "flat" topography, making it hard to use and difficult to differentiate one button from another.

Performance. Disappointing. Although the speaker placement is much improved over, say, the Ford F-150, the system still doesn't perform up to expectations. As with the Chevy entry, this vehicle appears to be vastly underpowered. Add road noise to that, and you have a formula for lousy sound. I did like the tweeters, which were perfectly mounted in the A pillars and filled the cabin with clear, unsullied highs; still, Dodge doesn't provide them with enough of a power amp to get them up and dancing. Disappointing and confusing, since other Chrysler stereos I've tested have had more than ample power. This one doesn't.

Conclusion. Worst feature: anemic power amp. Best feature: tweeters. Perfectly placed and aimed--among the best I've seen. If this system had the beefy power amp from the F-150, watch out! As it is, though, it's meek and mild. Needs more power!

2000 Toyota Tundra

Ranking in class: Third

System Score: 4.0

Components. System consists of 4-inch speakers in the rear doors, with 5-inch speakers in the front doors coupled with tweeters in the upper portion. Electronics include AM/FM/Cassette/CD.

Performance. Not a very impressive stereo. The amp is weak and of a very poor quality -- it distorts massively above half gain. Unfortunately, the speakers aren't much better. The 4-inch speakers in the back doors are tucked under the armrests in an awkward and really lame position; they're largely useless. The front speakers aren't much better. The mid-bass driver is partially blocked by the door panel, cutting off sound. Not very good. The tweeters are okay, well positioned and accessible. There's not much nice I can say about sound quality in this vehicle. The tweeters do help quite a bit, but they're fighting a losing battle against the underpowered amp and the lousy speakers elsewhere in the system.

Conclusion. Worst feature: speakers, front or rear, take your pick. Best feature: a nicely appointed radio, with decent ergonomics. Large display and an easily readable readout. Better than most in this class.

2000 Ford F-150

Ranking in class: Fourth (last)

System Score: 3.5

Components. System consists of 6-inch full-range speakers in the front and rear doors. There are no tweeters or subwoofers in this system. Electronics include an AM/FM/CD and, as usual with all Ford systems, a kick-ass amplifier tucked away somewhere. This thing really cranks! The radio has nice ergonomics--buttons are well-spaced and logically laid out, readout is bright green, faceplate makes sense.

Performance. I wish this system had better speakers. This was the only vehicle in this test without separate tweeters, and the system suffers as a result. The sound is very dull. Female vocals sound boxy, muted, subdued and muffled. Likewise acoustic strings, which come off like the musicians are performing in the next room. Just not very impressive at all. Too bad, because the power amp kicks butt and the rest of the system rocks. If this system had even decent tweeters in the front doors or A pillars, along with slightly better speakers all around, it would probably have won the class. As it is, it's just mediocre. It doesn't make sense for Ford to match this power amp with such lousy speakers. In the future, they should save their money.

Conclusion. Best feature: as with most Ford systems, the power amp. Worst feature: lack of tweeters. The radio had a very user-friendly feel and nice cosmetics. Too bad they didn't give this system better speakers.

After driving all four trucks, each editor was asked to rank the vehicles in two categories. The first category was the order in which an editor would personally rank the vehicles in terms of "would I buy it?" The second category was a ranking of "would I recommend it to a full-size pickup shopper?" Then all personal and recommended rankings were put together to come up with an overall ranking for each category.

With the exception of the Toyota Tundra, little variation existed between how our editors felt about the trucks personally, and how they felt about them as a recommended buy. The Dodge was clearly the laggard, as it was ranked last by every editor for both personal and recommended ratings. D'oh!

Personal Pick Total Percentage
1. Ford F-150 13 81.3
2. Toyota Tundra 13 81.3
3. Chevrolet Silverado 10 62.5
4. Dodge Ram 4 25
Recommended Pick Total Percentage
1. Ford F-150 15 93.8
2. Toyota Tundra 11 68.8
3. Chevrolet Silverado 10 62.5
4. Dodge Ram 4 25
Engine Performance
Vehicle Score Ranking
Chevrolet 83 1(t)
Toyota 83 1(t)
Ford 78 3
Dodge 67 4
Transmission Performance
Vehicle Score Ranking
Toyota 90 1
Chevrolet 78 2
Ford 75 3
Dodge 65 4
Braking Performance
Vehicle Score Ranking
Chevrolet 73 1
Toyota 70 2
Ford 65 3
Dodge 53 4
Suspension Performance
Vehicle Score Ranking
Ford 80 1
Chevrolet 78 2
Toyota 60 3
Dodge 53 4
Tire Performance
Vehicle Score Ranking
Ford 83 1
Chevrolet 75 2
Dodge 70 3
Toyota 55 4
Steering Performance
Vehicle Score Ranking
Ford 75 1
Chevrolet 68 2
Toyota 63 3
Dodge 45 4
Fun to Drive
Vehicle Score Ranking
Chevrolet 78 1
Ford 75 2
Toyota 63 3
Dodge 50 4
Seat Comfort Front
Vehicle Score Ranking
Ford 83 1
Chevrolet 80 2
Toyota 78 3
Dodge 55 4
Seat Comfort Rear
Vehicle Score Ranking
Chevrolet 67 1
Ford 60 2
Toyota 50 3
Dodge 44 4
Wind & Road Noise
Vehicle Score Ranking
Toyota 78 1
Ford 75 2
Chevrolet 70 3
Dodge 63 4
Rattles & Squeaks
Vehicle Score Ranking
Ford 90 1
Toyota 83 2
Chevrolet 78 3
Dodge 48 4
Interior Design
Vehicle Score Ranking
Ford 83 1
Toyota 73 2
Chevrolet 65 3
Dodge 63 4
Interior Materials
Vehicle Score Ranking
Ford 73 1
Dodge 65 2
Toyota 68 3
Chevrolet 63 4
HVAC/Stereo
Vehicle Score Ranking
Chevrolet 80 1
Ford 78 2
Toyota 70 3
Dodge 63 4
Secondary Controls
Vehicle Score Ranking
Ford 80 1
Toyota 78 2
Chevrolet 70 3(t)
Dodge 70 3(t)
Cupholders
Vehicle Score Ranking
Toyota 80 1
Ford 78 2(t)
Dodge 78 2(t)
Chevrolet 73 3
Exterior Design
Vehicle Score Ranking
Dodge 90 1
Ford 88 2
Toyota 78 3
Chevrolet 45 4
Overall Build Quality
Vehicle Score Ranking
Toyota 80 1
Ford 78 2
Chevrolet 68 3
Dodge 63 4
Entry/Exit
Vehicle Score Ranking
Ford 86 1
Toyota 78 2
Chevrolet 68 3
Dodge 63 4
Expand/Load Cargo
Vehicle Score Ranking
Dodge 80 1(t)
Ford 80 1(t)
Toyota 80 1(t)
Chevrolet 74 4
Storage Space
Vehicle Score Ranking
Dodge 84 1
Chevrolet 80 2
Ford 78 3
Toyota 53 4

As we stated at the beginning of this comparison test, we were looking for the best full-size truck sold in America that could do everything well. By carefully analyzing the features found on the various models in this test, our editors came up with 15 items they thought were essential, highly desired or truly unique in the full-size truck market.

Picking these items was not easy. Order sheets for full-size trucks are amazingly extensive. There are different axle ratios, snow-plow packages, rear-seat deletes, special regional equipment groups, six different types of tires for one vehicle, bug protectors...it's enough to drive your average Edmunds.com editor to the brink of insanity. But hey, that's what we get paid for. We also tried to place emphasis on features that could not easily be obtained through aftermarket equipment suppliers (which is why you won't see bedliners listed, for example).

Please note that this list only pertains to factory-installed options. Yes, you can get keyless remote on a Toyota Tundra, but it's only available as a dealer-installed option, and therefore vulnerable to dealer markup.

Features List
  Chevy Silverado 4WD 1500 LS Extended Cab Dodge Ram 4WD 1500 Quad Cab Sport Ford F-150 4WD XLT SuperCab Styleside Toyota Tundra 4WD SR5 V8 Access Cab
Brakes, four-wheel ABS S O O O
Cab step bars NA NA O O
Compass and ext. temp. display O O S NA
Driver's seat, power adjustment O O O NA
Four-wheel drive, automatic S NA NA NA
Four-wheel drive, electronic activation S NA O S
Heated Side Mirrors O O NA NA
Limited-slip rear differential O O O NA
Off-Road Package O O O O
Power points, 2 (n/i c-lighter) S NA NA S
Rear window, defrost O NA NA NA
Rear window, sliding O O O O
Rear-seat heater ducts S NA NA NA
Remote keyless entry S O O NA
Towing receiver hitch O O O O

S = Standard O = Optional NA = Not available

Four-wheel ABS
Full-size trucks aren't known for their blazing acceleration, but they still have to stop quickly and confidently, especially with heavy cargo in the bed or a trailer attached to the rear. Our Silverado LS was the only truck to have standard ABS, though both the Ford and Toyota had it as optional equipment. Our Ram Quad Cab Sport only had rear-wheel ABS, and its braking distances suffered considerably. We should note that four-wheel ABS is available on the Ram, but our test truck's Off-Road Group precluded it. The Toyota's ABS system also came packaged with daytime running lights.

Cab step bars/running boards
Getting in and out of full-size pickups is sometimes difficult, especially for people of smaller stature. The Ford was the only truck in our test to have them equipped. You can get cab step bars or running boards on the Silverado and the Ram, but they are dealer-installed options only.

Compass and exterior temperature display
Though perhaps not as much as SUVs, trucks are still expected to head into unfamiliar terrain for recreational trips like camping, fishing, hiking and rock climbing. Having a compass and exterior temperature display can come in handy.

Power driver's seat
This one is pretty straightforward. Full-size pickups aren't the agrarian workhorses they once were. They are expected to have the same luxury features that cars do. Having a power-operated seat is a big bonus. The only way to get a power driver's seat on the Tundra is to purchase the much-more-expensive Limited V8 Access Cab.

Automatic four-wheel drive
Four-wheel drive is useful when road conditions are constantly poor. But what if the road conditions are continually changing? Do you leave the truck in 2WD and risk losing traction, or put it into 4WD and put extra wear and strain on the drivetrain? The Silverado's Autotrac 4WD-system solves the problem. It's not all-wheel drive, but Autotrac does provide 100 percent rear-wheel drive until road conditions warrant a change. When extra traction is needed, an electronic control module activates an electronic motor to transfer the torque between the front and rear wheels.

Electronic four-wheel-drive activation
Hardcore off-roaders will tell you that having a manual stick to operate the transfer case is preferable because it's more dependable. There may be some truth to that, but for the remaining 99 percent of the population, push-button 4WD is very convenient. The Silverado and Tundra have it standard, the F-150's is optional, and the Ram's is manually operated only. All of the transfer cases found here were "shift-on-the-fly."

Heated side mirrors
Despite what many of our neighbors here in Los Angeles think, life is not always a ray of sunshine. There's this stuff called snow, you see, and it can really suck sometimes, especially when it turns to ice or fogs up the side mirrors on your truck. Heated side mirrors are a big bonus if you live somewhere cold.

Limited-slip rear differential
Though it's not for everybody, a limited-slip differential is a must for any serious off-road duty. When equipped with a limited-slip differential, the amount of power directed towards a spinning wheel is reduced and redirected to the wheel with traction. In off-road situations, a limited-slip is helpful in low-traction situations like driving over sand, gravel, snow or ice. Another advantage to a limited-slip differential is that it doesn't adversely affect the vehicle while it is being driven on pavement. Of the four trucks in this group, only the Tundra cannot be ordered with a limited-slip.

Off-road package
A factory off-road package adds components like stiffer shocks and springs to improve a truck's ability to cross challenging terrain. All of the trucks in the test were equipped with one except the Tundra. The Ram's was clearly the most expansive (and expensive). It's true that sturdier aftermarket parts can be obtained, but those are generally not covered under the factory warranty. The only downside to an off-road package is that it will usually stiffen the ride quality.

Two power points
Having two power points (in addition to the cigarette lighter) greatly enhances a truck's ability to run multiple accessories at the same time. Equipment like cell-phone chargers, radar detectors, air pumps, laptop computers and hand-held radios come to mind.

Rear-window defroster
Did you read the paragraph about the heated side mirrors? Well, the same goes for the rear-window defroster. Pretty much every car has one, so why not trucks? This is a good question, as the Silverado is the only truck you can get this feature on.

Sliding rear window
A sliding rear window improves ventilation inside the cabin. It also lets your pooch stick his snout inside the cabin from the bed, if he or she is so inclined. All of the vehicles here had this as an option.

Rear-seat heater ducts
Did you read the paragraphs about the heated side mirrors and the rear-window defroster? Well, the same goes for rear-seat heater ducts. Winter sucks. Just like cars, extended-cab trucks are expected to haul people in back. If it were wintertime, those backseat passengers would be mighty pleased to have their own heater ducts to keep their feet warm. The Silverado is the only truck you can get this feature on.

Remote keyless entry
This is a pretty popular option with all vehicles. Keyless remote saves time, improves safety in dangerous areas and prevents errant key scratches on the doors. From our experience, we know that having keyless remote really spoils you. In our group, only the Toyota lacked keyless remote, though it can be obtained as a dealer-installed option.

Towing receiver hitch
Uh, can you imagine a pickup truck that didn't offer a towing receiver hitch? Full-size pickups are the kings of towing. So equipped, you can tows boats, hook up a motorcycle trailer, or just pop a nappy tennis ball over the ball hitch. Towing receiver hitches are optional on all of the trucks in this test.

Final Rankings
  Chevy Silverado 4WD 1500 LS Extended Cab Dodge Ram 4WD 1500 Quad Cab Sport Ford F-150 4WD XLT SuperCab Styleside Toyota Tundra 4WD SR5 V8 Access Cab
Personal Rating (10% of score) 62.5 25 81.3 81.3
Recommended Rating (10% of score) 62.5 25 93.8 68.8
25-Point Evaluation (20% of score) 71.3 61.8 75.4 71.5
Performance Testing (20% of score) 90 63 80 96
Feature Content (20% of score 76.7 56.7 60 40
Price (20% of score) 91.4 89.3 92.7 100
Total Score 78.4 59.2 79.1 76.5
Final Ranking 2 4 1 3
Vehicle
Model year2000
MakeFord
ModelF-150
StyleXLT 4x4 SuperCab Styleside (5.4L 8cyl 4A)
Base MSRParound $26,000
As-tested MSRPover $30,000
Drivetrain
Drive type4WD
Engine typeSOHC 16-valve V8
Displacement (cc/cu-in)5408
Horsepower (hp @ rpm)260 @ 4,500 rpm
Torque (lb-ft @ rpm)350 @ 2,500 rpm
Transmission typeFour-speed automatic
Track Test Results
0-60 mph (sec.)8.9
1/4-mile (sec. @ mph)16.9 sec
60-0 mph (ft.)142 ft
Slalom, 6 x 100 ft. (mph)54.3
Skid pad, 200-ft. diameter (lateral g)0.7
Fuel Consumption
EPA fuel economy (mpg)14 city/18 highway
Edmunds observed (mpg)12.3
Fuel tank capacity (U.S. gal.)25
Dimensions & Capacities
Curb weight, mfr. claim (lbs.)4,611
Length (in.)225.9 (bed length: 83.4)
Width (in.)78.3
Height (in.)75.5
Wheelbase (in.)138.5
Turning circle (ft.)40.5
Legroom, front (in.)40.9
Legroom, rear (in.)32.2
Headroom, front (in.)40.8
Headroom, rear (in.)37.8
Shoulder room, front (in.)63.7
Shoulder room, rear (in.)63.7
Warranty
Bumper-to-bumper3 years/36,000 miles
Powertrain3 years/36,000 miles
Corrosion5 years/unlimited miles
Roadside assistance3 years/36,000 miles
Safety
Side airbagsNot Available
Head airbagsNot Available
Antilock brakesStandard
Traction controlNot Available
Stability controlNot Available
NHTSA crash test, driverNot Tested
NHTSA crash test, passengerNot Tested
NHTSA crash test, side front5 stars
NHTSA crash test, side rear5 stars
NHTSA rollover resistanceNot Tested
Vehicle
Model year2000
MakeChevrolet
ModelSilverado 1500
StyleLS 4WD Extended Cab (5.3L 8cyl 4A)
Drivetrain
Drive type4WD
Engine typeOHV 16-valve V8
Displacement (cc/cu-in)5292
Horsepower (hp @ rpm)285 @ 5,200 rpm
Torque (lb-ft @ rpm)325 @ 4,000 rpm
Transmission typeFour-speed automatic
Track Test Results
0-60 mph (sec.)8.4
1/4-mile (sec. @ mph)16.5 sec
60-0 mph (ft.)140 ft
Slalom, 6 x 100 ft. (mph)52.9
Skid pad, 200-ft. diameter (lateral g)0.74
Fuel Consumption
EPA fuel economy (mpg)15 city/18 highway
Edmunds observed (mpg)12.7
Fuel tank capacity (U.S. gal.)26
Dimensions & Capacities
Curb weight, mfr. claim (lbs.)4,621
Length (in.)227.6 (bed length: 78.7)
Width (in.)78.5
Height (in.)73.9
Wheelbase (in.)143.5
Legroom, front (in.)41.3
Legroom, rear (in.)33.7
Headroom, front (in.)41
Headroom, rear (in.)38.4
Shoulder room, front (in.)65.2
Shoulder room, rear (in.)66.3
Warranty
Bumper-to-bumper3 years/36,000 miles
Powertrain3 years/36,000 miles
Corrosion6 years/100,000 miles
Roadside assistance3 years/36,000 miles
Vehicle
Model year2000
MakeToyota
ModelTundra
StyleSR5 V8 4dr Access Cab 4WD SB (4.7L 8cyl 4A)
Drivetrain
Drive type4WD
Engine typeDOHC 32-valve V8
Displacement (cc/cu-in)4664
Horsepower (hp @ rpm)245 @ 4,800 rpm
Torque (lb-ft @ rpm)315 @ 3,400 rpm
Transmission typeFour-speed automatic
Track Test Results
0-60 mph (sec.)8.6
1/4-mile (sec. @ mph)16.7 sec
60-0 mph (ft.)134 ft
Slalom, 6 x 100 ft. (mph)56.9
Skid pad, 200-ft. diameter (lateral g)0.72
Fuel Consumption
EPA fuel economy (mpg)14 city/17 highway
Edmunds observed (mpg)14
Fuel tank capacity (U.S. gal.)26.4
Dimensions & Capacities
Curb weight, mfr. claim (lbs.)4,518
Length (in.)217.5 (bed length: 76.5)
Width (in.)75.2
Height (in.)71.3
Wheelbase (in.)128.3
Turning circle (ft.)44.3
Legroom, front (in.)41.5
Legroom, rear (in.)29.6
Headroom, front (in.)40.3
Headroom, rear (in.)37
Shoulder room, front (in.)62.4
Shoulder room, rear (in.)63.2
Seating capacity6
Warranty
Bumper-to-bumper3 years/36,000 miles
Powertrain5 years/60,000 miles
Corrosion5 years/unlimited miles
Roadside assistanceN/A
Safety
Front airbagsStandard
Side airbagsNot Available
Head airbagsNot Available
Antilock brakesOptional
Traction controlNot Available
Stability controlNot Available
NHTSA crash test, driver4 stars
NHTSA crash test, passenger3 stars
NHTSA crash test, side frontNot Tested
NHTSA crash test, side rearNot Tested
NHTSA rollover resistanceNot Tested
Vehicle
Model year2000
MakeDodge
ModelRam Pickup 1500
Style4x4 Quad Cab Sport (5.9L 8cyl 4A)
Options on test vehicleCustomer Preferred Package 26G, the Sport Group, the Trailer Tow group, the Leather Interior Group, the Off Road Group, and the 5.9-liter V8 with four-speed automatic transmission
Drivetrain
Drive type4WD
Engine typeOHV 16-valve V8
Displacement (cc/cu-in)5895
Horsepower (hp @ rpm)245 @ 4,000 rpm
Torque (lb-ft @ rpm)335 @ 3,200 rpm
Transmission type4-speed automatic
Track Test Results
0-60 mph (sec.)9.6
1/4-mile (sec. @ mph)17.3 sec
60-0 mph (ft.)168 ft
Slalom, 6 x 100 ft. (mph)56.3
Skid pad, 200-ft. diameter (lateral g)0.73
Fuel Consumption
EPA fuel economy (mpg)12 city/17 highway
Edmunds observed (mpg)10.7
Fuel tank capacity (U.S. gal.)26
Dimensions & Capacities
Curb weight, mfr. claim (lbs.)5,112
Length (in.)224.1 (bed length: 82.1)
Width (in.)79.3
Height (in.)74.6
Wheelbase (in.)138.7
Legroom, front (in.)41
Legroom, rear (in.)31.6
Headroom, front (in.)40.2
Headroom, rear (in.)39.4
Shoulder room, front (in.)66
Shoulder room, rear (in.)67.7
Warranty
Bumper-to-bumper3 years/36,000 miles
Powertrain3 years/36,000 miles
Corrosion5 years/100,000 miles
Roadside assistance3 years/36,000 miles
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