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The Six Most Affordable Pickups of 2016

Written By, NowCar Team

If you're shopping for a vehicle on a budget, it's often in your best interest to pursue the most affordable models in a targeted segment. Customers will often assume that these less-expensive vehicles aren't as capable, but we can assure you that some of the best rides on the road don't cost an arm and a leg.

This is especially true for pickup trucks, as a customer could find an excellent ride for an affordable price. To learn the best new car prices for these pickups, continue reading below...


2016 Nissan Frontier: $17,990

Nissan Frontier

This mid-size pickup operates like a much larger vehicle, and we mean that in the best way possible. The available 4.0-liter V6 engine can produce 261 horsepower and 281 pounds-feet of torque, leading to an impressive 6,500-pound towing capacity. Of course, the other options are just as capable, as the 'S' and 'SV four-cylinder' engines both pump out 152 horsepower and deliver a 19 city/23 highway mile per gallon fuel efficiency.

There are several ways you can accessorize your Frontier, and these additions will truly accentuate some of your truck's best features. There's the Sliding Bed Extender, which locks into place over your bed's open tailgate and slides right against the cab, giving the driver significantly more cargo space. Another available addition is the step rails, which will help you or your passenger get into the tall truck.

Finally, the bed tent is perhaps the coolest accessory you could get for your Frontier. The easy-open dome-shaped tent turns your truck's bed into a "sturdy, level sleeping area." The tent includes a rain-fly, so you'll never need to suffer through the elements.


2016 Chevy Colorado: $20,100

Chevy Colorado

The 2015 and 2016 Motor Trend Truck of the Year is impressive for multiple reasons, and we're not talking about the affordable price. For starters, the 2.8-liter Duramax Turbo-Diesel engine can pump out a best-in-class 22 city/31 highway mile per gallon fuel efficiency. Other engine options include the 3.6-liter V6 (which provides a best-in-class towing capacity of 7,000 pounds) and the 2.5-liter I4 (delivers an incredible 27 highway mile per gallon fuel efficiency).

Of course, the interior is equally impressive, especially all of the technological features. This includes the MyLink eight-inch touch-screen system, which allows the driver and passenger to access a variety of features, like radio, navigation, and many of your phone's basic capabilities.

The Colorado also boasts advanced safety technology, like the Forward Collision Alert (anticipates a collision and apply the brakes accordingly) and the Lane Departure Warning (alerts the driver of a fellow driver who may prevent the Colorado from switching lanes). Couple that with the OnStar Automatic Crash Response system, and you can be confident that you and your passengers will be safe.


2016 GMC Canyon: $20,955

GMC Canyon

The midsize pickup offers the best of both worlds: the nimble driving ability of a smaller truck and the rugged, off-roading abilities of a larger truck.

The handling could be attributed to the Driver Control Technology, which includes such functions as the StabiliTrak with Traction Control, which will help prevent your vehicle from getting off course. Meanwhile, the Hill Descent Control assures that you'll be able to get up any mountainous area, and the Automatic Locking Rear Differential provides increased traction in a low-speed situation.

Of course, we can't attribute those features to the truck's power and off-roading ability. The Duramax 2.8-liter I4 Turbo Diesel engine provides some awesome specs, including 181 horsepower and 369 pounds-feet of torque. Customers could also opt for the 305-horsepower 3.6-liter V6 engine (with an estimated 22 combined mile per gallon fuel efficiency) or the 2.5-liter four-cylinder unit.

Similar to the other trucks on this list, the Canyon also provides some innovative technology. This includes the eight-inch color touch screen that allows drivers to access Apply CarPlay, which will connect with your iPhone to offer the optimal driving experience. There's also a Rear Vision Camera (which allows you to see any drivers or objects behind you), as well as the IntelliLink system.


2016 Toyota Tacoma: $20,965

Toyota Tacoma

There are several reasons why the Tacoma should be regarded as one of the company's most popular models: luxury, specs, and reliability. You may not necessarily associate longevity with a pickup, but Toyota vice president and general manager Bill Fay previously said that 75-percent of the nearly 3 million Tacomas sold over the past two decades are still on the road today. That's mighty impressive, regardless of the type of vehicle.

The engineers went with a sportier look for the 2016 model, as they "accentuated the cut lines over the wheel arches and reshaped the front grille." The cut lines had to be revamped due to the resized square openings on the front and rear wheel wells, as well as the "prominently defined" bulging fenders at the top of the wheel flares. Meanwhile, the grille was refigured to look more like the trapezoidal unit featured on the 2014 Tundra.


2016 Ram 1500: $25,660

Ram 1500

There's so much to talk about when it comes to the Ram 1500, as the pickup is truly in a class of its own. Featuring a class-exclusive Active-Level Four-Corner Air Suspension system (which should help to "improve capability and maintain the exceptional performance Ram trucks are known for"), customers have the option to customize their driving experience.

There's the standard 3.6-liter Pentastar V6 unit, which can pump out 305 horsepower and 269 feet-pounds of torque. There's also the 5.7-liter Hemi V8 engine, a unit that drivers can expect to deliver 396 horsepower and 410 feet-pounds of torque. Finally, customers could go with the 3.0-liter EcoDiesel V6 unit, which doesn't only provide impressive power specs (240 horsepower and 420 pounds-feet of torque), but a solid 21 city/29 highway mile per gallon fuel efficiency.

The driving experience will be elevated due to the innovative interior, which includes the UConnect infotainment system. With the inclusion of this technology, drivers don't only have the ability to access the radio and a navigation system, but also their phone's basic capabilities and the interior climate control system.


2016 Toyota Tundra $28,510

Toyota Tundra

There's really not much that the Tundra can't do, but we're going to focus in on the vehicle's driving experience. The four-wheel-drive vehicle has been coupled with the Active Traction Control system, which will control the power that goes to all of the wheels. This will provide maximum traction, meaning you'll never have to worry about your truck losing control. Furthermore, engineers included the largest front brakes in the class, as well as an Automatic Limited-Slip Differential (allowing for maximum control).

This is coupled with a pair of engines: the i-FORCE 5.7-liter V8 (381 horsepower, 401 pounds-feet of torque) and the i-FORCE 4.6-liter V8 (310 horsepower, 327 pounds-feet of torque).

We also appreciate the abundance of cargo room in the pickup, as Toyota has offered three different bed lengths for their Tundra: a 5.5-foot short bed, a 6.5-foot standard bed, and an 8.1-foot long bed. If you want to carry some extra goods, you can fold up the rear seats to get even more room in the interior.

You can easily get a luxurious and powerful pickup truck for less than $30,000, and there are several vehicles that you can purchase for even less! Customers should no longer be associating a high price tag with pickups, as there's no denying that the segment is now very affordable.