Best in Class: Double-Cab Pick-Up Trucks

Every company has different requirements from its vehicles, whether the priority is lowest costs, reliability, or driver appeal. Best in class helps you to choose the vehicles most appropriate for your needs.

Ford Ranger 2.2 TDCi 150 XLT 4x4

Leasing price: £400
purchase price: £19,858
Payload: 1,152kg
fuel economy: 33.2mpg
repair costs: £2,736
running costs: £26,868

Key reason to buy:  Newest vehicle in the sector with latest hi-tech features

Best for:  Good value specification and equipment compared to rivals

Driving Business says: The Ranger is the new kid on the block in this sector, arriving as an all-new model early in 2012. Although the Ranger pick-up has been on sale for years it has struggled to compete with Japanese rivals for sales. The latest model comes in a full range of single-, exended- and double-cab variants with three engine choices and three equipment grades. This XLT comes with a range of safety equipment as standard, as well as Ford’s Quickclear heated windscreen and Bluetooth integration. Four-wheel drive versions come with a best-in-class maximum braked towing capacity of 3,350kg, boosting the vehicles credentials as a proper workhorse.

Land Rover Defender 2.2 TD4 Pick-up

Leasing price: £401
purchase price: £21,533
Payload: 1,030kg
fuel economy: 25.5mpg
repair costs: £3,426
running costs: £29,268

Key reason to buy:  Unrivalled off-road ability, and permanent four-wheel drive

Best for: Most capable of tackling serious off-road terrain

Driving Business says: Land Rover has become one of the best known British car brands worldwide and offers a range of Defender vehicles in the pick-up sector. However, the Defender – which has its roots in the original Land Rover of 1948, is cramped and the load bay of the standard 110 wheelbase variant is rather small (the more expensive 130-inch wheelbase brings more space). Land Rover has also seen fit not to invest in incorporating airbags in the Defender’s equipment list. Hard to imagine a vehicle that doesn’t even come with a driver’s airbag on the options list. It does offer great ability in difficult terrain and strong residual values, but falls short in many other areas.

Mitsubishi L200 2.5 DI-D 175 LB Warrior

Leasing price: £388
purchase price: £19,675
Payload: 1,045kg
fuel economy: 35.8mpg
repair costs: £3,888
running costs: £26,694

Key reason to buy:  Market leader and unlimited mileage warranty

Best for:  All-round appeal has made the L200 a sales leader in the sector

Driving Business says: The Mitsubishi L200 still looks remarkably fresh, despite being one of the longest-serving pick-up trucks on the market. It has also spent much of that time as a best-seller, making its mark as a sturdy and reliable workhorse. But while the L200’s appetite for work is unstinting, it has also appealed to those who like their vehicles to stand out. It is a confident performer away from the main highways and its sophisticated (for a pick-up truck) 4WD selector, with the ability to run in high-range four-wheel drive without diff locks made traversing rutted tracks an easy job. Like all trucks, you become aware of its size in busy areas such as towns and car parks.

Nissan Navara 2.5 dCi 190 Acenta

Leasing price: £374
purchase price: £19,142
Payload: 1,125kg
fuel economy: 33.6mpg
repair costs: £2,604
running costs: £26,502

Key reason to buy: 
Combined rugged looks with good all-round ability

Best for: Delivers the most power and payload per pound than any rival

Driving Business says: When the Nissan Navara arrived on the pick-up truck market it set new benchmarks for power, performance, and refinement. The vehicle was developed alongside the Pathfinder SUV and could rightly claim to offer the least compromise for people used to driving a car. The rivals have since made up ground on the Nissan, but the Navara still has a few aces up its sleeve: revisions in 2010 ensured it was still the most powerful four-cylinder pick-up trucks on sale, while its payload of 1,125kg is still among the best, beaten only by the new Ford Ranger. Its leasing rates are also very keen, and running costs are still competitive.

Toyota Hilux 3.0 D4-D 171 Invincible

Leasing price: £404
purchase price: £20,904
Payload: 1,060kg
fuel economy: 36.7mpg
repair costs: £2,874
running costs: £25,426

Key reason to buy: Reputation as a dauntless and reliable workhorse

Best for: Revisions in 2012 give the Hilux best-in-class fuel consumption

Driving Business says: The Toyota Hilux seems to have been part of the commercial vehicle scene for longer than many of us have been around. The current Hilux is the sixth-generation model, introduced in 2006, and thoroughly refreshed for 2012 with a new look and revised engines. The Invincible is the highest specification model and Toyota began using this name after an episode of Top Gear where an old Hilux was subjected to a range of damaging stunts and the engine still managed to start. It might not have the kerbside appeal of some rivals, but the latest Hilux has a solid feel and recent revisions to the engine give it best-in-class fuel consumption.

Volkswagen Amarok 2.0 BiTDI 163 Trendline S

Leasing price: £420
purchase price: £20,580
Payload: 1,105kg
fuel economy: 35.8mpg
repair costs: £2,454
running costs: £25,158

Key reason to buy: Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles quality now in a pick-up

Best for: Best residual value contributes to lowest overall running costs

Driving Business says: Volkswagen commercial vehicles have a strong reputation for quality and low running costs, thanks in part to often class-leading residual values. When it launched the Amarok, there seemed to be a great deal of pent-up demand for the product – many organisations running commercial vehicles seemed to have been waiting for Volkswagen to launch a pick-up truck. The result, with a relatively small allocation of vehicles for the UK, has been long waiting times, but this has now improved. The Amarok has gone straight to the top of the class when it comes to ability, and using a smaller engine than rivals, it also offers  excellent fuel consumption.

Terms explained

Leasing price: The best price at 3yr/60k miles – with maintenance

Purchase price: The P11D price on which driver’s BIK (if applicable) and employer’s NIC is based

Payload: The mass in kg the vehicle is permitted to carry

Fuel economy: Lowest mpg also means the lowest CO2

Repair costs: Includes servicing and maintenance based on 3yr/ 60k miles ownership

Running costs: Repair costs, fuel costs and residual value over 3yr/60k miles

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