Thursday, August 11, 2022


10 trucks, all 2020 models, all less than $35,000

By James Raia

With the average price of a new passenger vehicle approaching $38,000 at the beginning of 2020, it’s no wonder why the base price of the most expensive truck in the United States approaches $90,000.

With the coronavirus continuing, the end-of-the-year sales for cars and trucks will be skewed compared to recent years.

Regardless, prices will remain high. But truck exceptions are aplenty.

2020 Ford F-150 pickup truck is among 10 under $35,000.
One 2020 Ford F-150 pickup truck model is among 10 under $35,000.

Here, in alphabetical order, are 10 trucks, all 2020 models, all available for less than $35,000. RV towing capacities vary greatly as do the 10 trucks’ prices, from an estimated $22,000 to $34,745.

That’s between slightly more than $3,000 and $16,000 lower than the average price of a new car or lightweight truck in the United States.

Chevrolet Colorado ($22,395)
A basic truck with a 2.5-liter, 4-cylinder, 200-horsepower engine. It has a six-speed automatic transmission, rear-wheel drive, 16-inch wheels, an extended cab and 16-inch wheels.

2020 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 ($29,895)
It’s two doors with a long bed. It’s powered by a 4.3-liter V6 paired with a six-speed automatic transmission and 285 horsepower.

Ford F-150 ($30,090)
A base work truck but with an XL trim. It has a 3.3-liter V6 engine with 290 horsepower. It has black plastic bumpers and grille, an AM/FM stereo with a clock and a 4.2-inch screen with audio controls.

Ford Ranger ($25,065)
The Ranger returned in 2019 after a several-year absence. It’s the XL trim, white paint with steelies and black bumpers. It’s powered by a 2.3-liter inline-four cylinder engine and 270 horsepower. There’s no brightwork nor rear seats.

GMC Canyon ($23,295)
It’s in the sixth year of the current generation, and it will be refreshed for 2021. The base 2020 model has a 2.5-liter, inline-four-cylinder engine and only 200 horsepower. Rear-wheel drive is standard.

GMC Sierra 1500 ($31,195)
A 4.3-liter V6 engine paired with a six-speed automatic and 285 horsepower. It has two doors and rear-wheel drive and looks the same as its lower-end sibling.

Nissan Frontier ($22,000, estimated)
With a new generation set for 2021, the 2020 model is the lowest-priced truck on the list. It has a 3.8-liter V6 engine paired with a nine-speed transmission and 310 horsepower.

Ram 1500 ($33,590)
Redesigned for 2019, this year’s offering is a quad cab with a 6-foot-4-inch bed. It features a V6 with 305 horsepower and an eight-speed automatic transmission. A 5.0-inch Uconnect display is standard.

Toyota Tacoma ($25,390)
Also in the sixth year of its current generation, the Toyota Tacoma’s bare-bones base model is about as no-frills as any truck on the market.

Toyota Tundra ($34,745)
It’s only available with a 5.7-liter V8 with 381 horsepower, extended cab and rear-wheel drive.

James Raia, a syndicated columnist in Sacramento, California, publishes a free weekly automotive podcast and newsletter. Sign-ups are available on He can be reached via email:



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1 year ago

Tow capacity is important. These bare bones trucks will spend their life working.
Can they be flat towed, an important piece of information for this crowd.

Bob P
1 year ago
Reply to  Tom

Not without a driveshaft disconnect kit

2 years ago

Would have been good to list the tow specifications for these.

Bob P
1 year ago
Reply to  volnavy007

Practically nothing these are basic trucks used by contractors

2 years ago

Better to wait, lots of disruption coming to the auto industry later this year. Hurtz is going to go under with an inventory of over 500,000 cars & trucks. Prices will be dropping.

Steve F
2 years ago

Towing capacity would have been a great piece of information as well.

Rick Rund
2 years ago
Reply to  Steve F

Oh, you want to tow… 😁😁😂😂

True, I don’t want any of those models they are showing.

Sink Jaxon
2 years ago

These trucks aren’t going to tow much more than an R-pod…and not very good at that!

Donald N Wright
2 years ago

No manual transmissions ? Where have the “work trucks” gone to?

Bob P
1 year ago

You can get a manual trans in the Tacoma

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