Car Buyer Labs

Car Buying Advice, Tips, and Reviews

A black 2018 Chevy Silverado 1500 is shown after leaving a used truck dealer.

Check Out These Five Fan Favorite Used Trucks for Sale

While it may seem that there is an endless supply of used trucks for sale, not every used pickup is worth your time. Some buyers are looking for something to haul equipment for work, while others might be searching for something that can handle some off-roading on the weekends, and of course, there are also those buyers who want an upgrade from the family car to something bigger and more comfortable. A used truck dealership is just the place for all these buyers, as the inventory is full of a variety of used pickups ready to be chosen by new owners.

There are definitely some pickups that stand out, popular models that have spent years at the top of lists touting them as the best, the safest, or the most fun. Though there are many reasons for these trucks to stay at the top of the list, not everyone agrees on the order or the inclusion of certain models. While many used trucks are older than 2017, we chose to focus on the newer used vehicles as there were many leaps between 2016 and 2017 in technology and safety features, as well as some trucks that were redesigned. We think you might be surprised at which trucks made the list. Curious? Read on.

#5: The Nissan Frontier – A Classic Work Truck Built to Last

With high sales numbers and a solid track record as a work truck, the Nissan Frontier starts off our list with a bang. Known for being a smooth ride, the Frontier is often used by crews for transporting workers and their equipment from site to site, whether they’re traveling over asphalt, dirt, or gravel.

There’s plenty of room to stow uniforms, tools, and other gear in the cab, with enough legroom for the crew, as well as plenty of space in the truck bed for bigger items like lumber, saws, shovels, and toolboxes. There’s even a work package available in 2017 models and above for those using the pickup as a job vehicle. If you’re the sort of person who is looking for a no-frills, serviceable work truck, the Nissan Frontier is an excellent option. It’s affordable, comfortable, and provides quite a bit of space for everything you need to do your job.

A black 2020 Ram 1500 is shown driving on a dusty dirt road.

#4: The Ram 1500 – The Truck That Has the Most Personalization Options

This truck is truly for anyone. With almost a dozen different configurations, the Ram 1500 is a versatile, unique, and powerful workhorse. During the late 2010s, it was the only full-size pickup to offer either a gasoline engine or diesel engine (V6 for gas and diesel, and an optional V8 for gas).

Since 2017, the 1500 has featured an air suspension package, which guarantees a comfortable, smooth ride. Depending on which trim level you purchase, you could also be getting a backup camera, remote start, rain-sensing wipers, and other upgrades. The post-2017 standard model already comes packed with features, but the highest trim level, known as the Limited, adds on the RamBox cargo management system, a premium center console, and available real wood accents in the cabin.

The Ram 1500 is that customizable truck that works for pretty much everyone. It can be the new family vehicle with its quiet interior and comfy seating arrangements, it could become the vacation truck that tows your camper or jetski, or the 1500 can be used as a small business work truck, hauling furniture, tools, or raw materials.

#3: The Chevrolet Silverado 1500 – The Safest Long-Hauler

Looking for something that can go the distance while being friendly enough to be driven by your teenager? The Chevrolet Silverado 1500 fits that bill to a tee. With its Teen Driver System included in 2017 models and, depending on the engine, a towing capability of between 5,500-9,400 lbs, this big guy has plenty of power and safety features to put to rest any unease.

Some models are available with eAssist, which improves fuel economy by using an additional power source from an electric motor. Though the electric motor isn’t part of a true hybrid system, meaning that it cannot power the pickup alone, it does provide assistance while also lowering the amount of fuel used to take you from place to place.

Durable, reliable, and safe, this pickup is built for a growing family and a variety of drivers. Parents will enjoy the safety features and can rest with the knowledge that the Silverado is tough enough to handle a new driver, while young adults can appreciate the fun, spacious interior and quality handling, ensuring a good time for all.

#2: GMC Sierra 1500 – Quality, Space, & Power

If you’re looking for something with more oomph that can be used for work and play, then the GMC Sierra 1500 might be what you need. With the 2017 and newer models’ ability to tow just above 12,000 lbs, a huge truck bed, and a powerful V6 or V8 engine, the Sierra is made to be a workhorse, with enough niceties to double as a vehicle for road trips with your buddies or a tailgate party on the weekend.

A relaxed, calm ride is yours when you step into the cabin of a GMC Sierra 1500. Easy to drive, with enough power to bring along the entire friend group to a drive-in movie or concert or haul enough materials to get started on the next big job.

If you need something you can take to your favorite fishing spot so you can spend the day with friends and family enjoying the outdoors, but also want something tough enough to handle the everyday tasks of your job, then you might want to consider the GMC Sierra 1500 as your next vehicle.

A black 2019 Ford F-150 Limited is shown driving on an open road.

#1: The Ford F-150 – The All-Star

The Ford brand has long been synonymous with classic Americana, and the F-150 has proven to be a popular choice among consumers. The Ford F-150 is as popular as it is because it can play so many different roles. It can be used as a work truck, a family vehicle, or a luxury reserved for the weekend.

It drives well in any sort of situation, whether you’re stuck in traffic on the highway, driving downtown, or exploring curving mountain roads in the middle of nowhere. You’ll love how roomy it is, the gentle ride, and the ease of transition from one activity to the next. The 2017 and newer models are definitely sleeker, smarter, and more spacious.

Do you want an all-around balanced pickup that can take you from work to play to daily errand runs at the drop of a hat? What about a truck that allows for growth, can take on more people and more stuff, and still manages to be a comfortable, fun ride? If that sounds like your kind of pickup, you might want to take the Ford F-150 home.

My dad bought a Ford F-150 when I was about nine years old, and we spent many hours inside that cab on our way to visit grandparents, attend music lessons, and campsites for weekend getaways. We fit six people in that pickup, along with multiple instruments, suitcases, and plenty of camping gear. My dad loved that Ford and drove it for several years before it had to retire. I don’t think he’d pick any other truck over it, and to this day, has many fond memories.

Which Truck Are You?

Have you enjoyed this rundown of some of our favorite used pickup trucks? If you’ve wanted to try out one of these models, you can do so at a local dealership near you. Take one of these for a spin, think about the possibilities, and know that whatever you choose, you’re joining a proud group of American vehicle owners, people who love their trucks, take care of them, and drive them for a long, long time.