Consumer Reports Recommends All Full-Size Half-Ton Pickups

Consumer Reports Recommends All Full-Size Half-Ton Pickups

Looking for a new half-ton pickup? You can rest easier: Every full-size half-ton pickup is “recommended” by Consumer Reports, according to its 2009 Annual Car Reliability Survey released today.

The reliability scores of the Chevrolet Silverado, GMC Sierra 1500 and Dodge Ram 1500 4x4 pickups have improved enough to earn CR's Recommendation.

The full list of recommended full-size trucks includes:

  • Chevrolet Silverado 1500 5.3-liter V-8
  • Dodge Ram 1500 5.7-liter V-8
  • Ford F-150 5.4-liter V-8
  • GMC Sierra 1500 5.3-liter V-8
  • Nissan Titan 5.6-liter V-8
  • Toyota Tundra 5.7-liter V-8

In midsize pickups, Asian brands rule without challenge from American small trucks. The full list of recommended compact and midsize trucks includes:

The full list of recommended compact and midsize trucks includes:

  • Honda Ridgeline V-6
  • Nissan Frontier V-6
  • Toyota Tacoma V-6

CR only recommends vehicles that have performed well in its tests, have at least average predicted reliability based on the Annual Auto Survey, and performed at least adequately if crash-tested or included in a government rollover test.

[Source: Consumer Reports]


This also in from USA Today...

CR said, that Detroit automaker Ford Motor now ranks with the best with "world-class reliability".

"Ford does produce more world-class vehicles" said Jake Fisher, senior automotive engineer for Consumer Reports.

Ford's group vice president for quality, Bennie Fowler, said, "It's great to just see the company mentioned along with the best-quality producers in the world."


The Chrysler brand was rated least reliable, behind five other U.S. nameplates.


Take that Dodge

Ford: 46 of 51 models (90%) have average or better then average quality.

GM: 21 of 48 models (44%) have average or better than average quality

Chrysler: 1 of 26 models (4%) has average or better than average quality.

I believe they have improved, and I think competition is the main reason. The appearance of the Tundra and Titan forced everyone to improve, which is good regardless of your brand preference.

Unfortunately Ford ranks at the bottom for performance, and since I need something to actually happen when the throttle is pressed, I would have to pass. That looks to change with the appearance of their new 400 hp engine. Hopefully they make it available across the F-150 line and not just in specialty variants.

Do you remember 2008? CR did not recommend the Tundra in 2008. So I don't think it was the Tundra that got everyone to change. The Chevy made hardly any changes at all. The Ram changed to compete with the F-150. Performance isn't 0-60 times, it is the act of getting work done and Ford has never been last in that category.

why are ford guys always mad and trying to prove something ?

Ford does make a quality truck, just too underpowered for my tastes, it might me an option when they get the new engines in them.

I find it interesting that Dodge owners would rather buy an inferior truck just because it has a more powerful engine. What good does a powerful engine do you if the rest of the truck has fallen apart around the engine?

Dodges don't fall apart, trust me I owned one for ten years and 150K, all it ever needed was oil changes.

Today it should be all about fuel economy and not HP.What did you guys do back in the 1970s and 1980s when 180hp was about tops for a pickup truck? Now you have 300+ and you still arent happy.Guess what,when CAFE standards kick in,300hp trucks will be gone.And dont even dream of 400hp.
Remember,the 1960s customers went wild with hp and engine sizes (440/455/500),but it all came to a crashing end and 120hp was commonplace.This will happen again when fuel economy becomes mandated.Then it will be up to quality of manufacturing not just horsepower.

You won't see 400HP trucks disappear, HP has been increasing in all vehicles and 180 HP in a truck just won't cut it anymore, Truck companies will be able to balance out thier lower MPG trucks with plug in hybrid models and the like.

Look if anything HP numbers are on the way up. With all this great technology HP and torque will keep going up with increased fuel mileage. Now if you ask me I would have both instead of just mpgs because if i wanted gas mileage i would have got a car. (Just not a Perius haha)


Keep in mind that the engines of yesteryear may have been low on HP, but they often produced torque numbers comparable to modern engines and moved vehicles that were significantly lighter than modern vehicles. Transmission and rear end gearing was also more apt towards work than fuel mileage (I've had trucks in the past with rear end gearing in the 5's, now it's tough to get even 4.10's or 4.30's).

Even if they weren't actually faster, they felt fast because they were putting a lot of torque to the ground right off the line.

Modern trucks are much heavier (especially four-door cab trucks), their engines have more HP but with similar torque to older engines, and they have transmissions and differentials designed for maximum fuel economy.

This is why a lot of us truck guys like diesel engines. Sure, modern diesel engines might be lower on HP than similar modern gas engines, but their torque figures surpass most similar modern gas engines and even classic big block and diesel engines. That massive torque is welcome in a truck, especially one that is neutered in gearing to keep engine revs as low as possible for emissions and fuel economy. The other option is to give us more gears for our gas engines, but that doesn't seem to work as well in consumer trucks as it does in the medium and heavy duty market.

Interesting how everyone is bashing Dodges. Same thing was going on about Fords in the 60s and 70's. Now they are best selling. Same thing in store for Dodge in a few years? My last 3 Fords were total lemons and the best Ford could say was "good luck with that", and refused to even attempt to repair. Last Ford was in shop 16 times in 11 months, and less than 6000 miles, and they refused to "Lemon Law" the truck. This after buying 32 new Ford trucks in 20 years. Bought Dodges ever since (5) and never in the shop for any kind of repairs, averaging over 150,000 miles each, only trading to get a "new" truck, not because it was broken.

Why do Dodge guys always try to prove something that isn't? First they said the heavy duty Ram was a domestic product when it is built in Mexico and owned by Fiat. Now it is Consumer Reports is a "Ford guy" because Chrysler turned out some awful results from Consumer Reports. Just give it up already.

I love Dodge.

Again they are trying to kill the messenger. Why do they not ask Dodge to make some better vehicles instead of attacking CR and the people reporting on it.

I think Toyota and Nissan entering the full size truck market has helped motivate Detroit to improve quality. Tough times have also forced manufactures to improve. Ford has been the leader in this regard. I don't think that it is a coincidence that they are also the only Detroit company that did not go crawling to various governments for bailout money. Most pickups are around average when it comes to quality and reliability. This means around 135 dealer visits per 100 vehicles sold(I couldn't find the exact numbers but this is close). There still is alot of room for improvement.
I want the most reliable product regardless of brand. I also won't support a company bailed out by taxpayers dollars.
If you look at the 1/2 ton pickups with the highest reliability ratings and factor in government bailouts that leaves Toyota and Ford. They may be the ugliest trucks of the bunch but the odds are they will be the easiest on my wallet to operate.

I had a 2005 Chevy 2500 with 6 litter transmission and transfer case went out at 57k, replaced with a 2006 Chevy 2500 with diesel, nothing but problems, purchased CARS warrantee has not covered expectations. Example CV joint out, they replaced the boot. I am Very Unhappy with GM and CARS warrantee.

Its good to see that these trucks are all rated well. Now as far as the Ford/Dodge/GM bash fest, is it really nessicary? I will come out and say, yes I am a Mopar guy, I like my Dodge trucks. Do I think Ford makes a good truck? Yes they do although I havnt owned one. Same goes for GM Trucks, my friends have GM trucks, and I owned one before I bought my Dodge. My Silverado was a good truck, if only a little abused, and my friends trucks have been good. I've only owned one Dodge truck thus far and have only had to replace power steering lines(dealership did it no charge). I dont do much towing, but I do haul frequiently and have had no let downs. I also hauled alot in my Silverado, no issues either and it had 230K+ on it. Im not the type of guy who if something goes wrong or is a common issue with my favorite truck I lie and cover it up. I'm honest.

My Silverado had two transmissions rebuilds in the time I had it, and it had constant brake issues(strange rear drum set up) other than that, no real issues. My Ram, as stated had to have power steering lines replaced(apparently this is common for the 03-05 trucks). My dads truck needed and EGR Valve at around 70k, and a Water Pump at around 78K(He has the 5.7 Hemi as do I). So I can say that I am planning on needed a EGR and Water pump between 70-80K. My family has also had two older Dodge Rams, a 2001 and a 98 both had no issues while we had them.

So I dont understand where people get that Dodge trucks are total junk. Each brand has their own problems and issues. I would just like to see people not try to act like their trucks are ivincible just because its a Dodge, Ford, or a GM.

I would get into the polotics of where these trucks are made, but I wont stick my head into areas I dont fully understand

Who is saying Dodge trucks are total junk? The 09+ Ram appears to be the only vehicle that is of at least average quality according to CR. Open your eyes, Mopar guys. Don't attack the messenger. Attack the maker or show proof that CR is lying and Dodge is building quality vehicles. If Dodge cannot even reach AVERAGE quality on more than 1 vehicle, what does that say to you? This is part of the story that was linked in the article. If this is hard for Mopar guys to take, I understand, but don't attack the messenger.

I wont attack CR cept that they generally suck with cars. They are better with appliance's but anyways I'm a big Mopar fan and the reason why I would buy a Ram (if I wasn't a poor college student lol) is for these reasons, I believe the Ram is the best looking full size truck, I know the engines are solid motors, and three brand loyalty. But here's the thing though for people saying the Ram isn't a domestic product, is it made by Dodge or by Honda? is Dodge an American company? I think so, may be ultimately owned by Fiat but Dodge is an American nameplate.

So if Toyota was bought by an American company everyone would be happy????
Peppy - finally someone admitting to brand loyalty.
I prefer that argument over all the other lame reasons why their truck choice is best.

Pick ups are going to outlast a car with any truck maker exept the Tundra with it's frames rusting into dust after 5 years. My GMC 1500 is 11 years old and the only thing I've had to replace are tires and a u-join. GM may be bankrupt and now "government motors" but they still build the longest lasting and most reliable pick up out on the market. Ford sells the most pick ups/ fire trucks/ garbage trucks/ box delivery trucks with their f series but Dodge is about to step up with a better truck than real pick up truck than ford. GM will continue to have the best pick ups in America.

woah fords reliable?? theyre the only thing keepin many mechaic shops around me in buisness has always been reliable for me..200k plus ive had one ford pass 100k..idk y chrysler is so badly judged as bad

and ram 1500 comes with lifetime warranty..can u beat that?? what was fords again?

You'll see more Dodge RAM Diesels in the MILLION MILE catagory than any other brand.

FYi, Chrysler/Dodge dropped the lifetime powertrain warranty.

@ Sean

They only dropped it because of business reasons something about insurance i wasnt because they couldnt back it up...and its still a good warranty, i forgot how much i didnt have time to read the article but it was on

You ford Fanboi's are the reason I'm glad I switch from my F-150 to my New 2009 Dodge RAM. This is the best truck I've owned and I drove them all at buying time.
Built in Mexico, owned by Italian you say? Hmm, up until just a few years ago the holy Ford F-150 was also built in mexico, engine was built in Canada. Umm, just remember Fiat only owns a small percentage as of right now. The UAW own the majority. We can have a pissing match all day as to who manufacturers what cars in what county and guess what, they all manufactuer in other countries. Besides, its only the HD 2500 and Up RAM that is built in Mexico. My truck was built in Michigan. :)

Before you Ford fans keep casting stones at the Dodge boys and Chevy/GMC owners, maybe you should look closer to what CR has to say in their latest survey results and forecast on reliability for the 2009 model lineup. This is what they share:

Chevrolet/GMC 1500 4X4 est to be 4% above average
Dodge Ram 1500 4X4 est to be average
Ford F150 4X4 est to be 2% below average
Toyota Tundra 4X4 est to be 12% below average

We should be pleased that all these brands do carry a recomended status and although one may appear slightly better in reliability does not constitute the others as "Junk".

Yes the lifetime powertrain warranty has been dropped. They replaced it with a 5year 100,000 Transferable warranty. The Lifetime warranty was/is not transferable.

So, the new warranty is the same as GM and longer than Ford.

I may add my 97 Ford F-150 was a good truck. I am in no way saying that Ford or GM is junk.

As far as bailouts go, I'm assuming no one is aware that Toyota did ask the Japanese Government for at least 3Billion? Also the Ford Exec flew in to the capitol along with the other Execs from GM & Chrysler at the beginning to ask for money. Once they say the strings attached they said no thank you which I will say was good of them as they floated a nice big loan right before the credit crunch of the recession that saved their asses.

But what the heck, it ain't built in dis her country I don't want it. So iza gonna go throw out my TV, worsher & drier, cuz they weren't built here either. :\ whatever

But let me reiterate, the Dodge RAM 1500 will be built in the good ole US of A. Warren Michigan plant is where mine came from. So when using the RAM built in Mexico bit, please be more specific. Thank you :)

CR is total biased crap. Dodge does and make the best truck around. Seen lots of gas powered rams at 200,00mi + range and they look and perform great with normal maintenance. Also Cummings powerd Rams are 500,000+ trucks with ease. But still CR is total biased crap.

Anybody stop to think why Dodge even needed to offer a lifetime warranty on the drivetrain? Or why GM and now Dodge too, did some smoke and mirrors with a 5 year 100k warranty? They were fighting claims of being unreliable. Those claims did not come out of thin air. FWIW IMHO oth brands have solid drivetrains so upping the mileage of the warranty is no big deal. A 100k warranty is great if you drive 20,000 miles a year. Most people don't. Most ould benefit more from the added year of coverage than an added 30-35k miles of coverage. FWIW what I noticed with Dodge is that the rest of the truck was falling apart before 100k miles. My Father In Law had a 1994 Cummins with a close to 200k miles on it. Only problem is the rest of the truck was not going to last as long as the engine and tranny. Interior falling apart, rust through on the fenders, multiple ball joint replacements and the list goes on. He babied this truck also, it was not a farm truck, they used it to tow 2 campers including a trip from VT to AK and back. It was after that trip he went out and bought a new Cummins Megacab because he realized the current truck, though running fine, was turing into a money pit. He is a Cummins fan, not a Dodge fan.

Wye they need to compare to toyo ,,the quality is not the best anymore,,,toyota have quality problem,,and i don't understand Wye they still said is good quality..Hyundai are better..and if your like a brand you never said this is a peace of junk ....each car and truck,need a file to no what they fix same like to go to your doctor.

Our family owns alot of cars, 98 Dodge Ram 1500 340,0000 miles..only problem transmission at 290,000 but was given to my young 18 year old brother at 270,000,he added performance chip,duel exhaust custom intake manifold,injectors ,eldelbrock performance heads ,headers ect..

97 Intrepid 3.3 140,000 trouble free miles never touched anything..

2002 Town & Country 120,000 again only a dead battery at 70,000 all mechanical/electrical original.

2003 Dodge Ram 1500 4.7 L, 200,000 trouble free miles,1 light bulb but driven mainly at night so..

2006 Dodge Charger 3.5 L 50,000 trouble free miles,continental tires wear out fast thats also detracts from c.r's reliability rating..

2007 Chrysler 300 C Hemi 40,000 trouble free miles.
as Charger tires.

2008 Dodge Challenger R/T 6500 trouble free miles.

My 2010 Dodge Ram 1500 2000 Trouble free miles replaced my 2004 Hemi Sport Dodge with 160,000 trouble free miles,brake pads,tires,oil and gas thats all with above cars..My 68 Charger 383 magnum 360,000 miles,bought at 120,000 ? Daily driver my first car in 1991,uncle owned from new,axle bearings replaced,heater core,u-joints,light bulbs,5 digit odometer so 1990 and older Chrysler mileage are really unkown,ran a 13.29 in 1/4 from 1992-1998 with original 383 w/3.54 gears then R/T badges,stripe and 440 .30 over,purple cam,12.43 1/4 car with new 3.23 rear axle..

I know c.r's report lower reliability ratings for stupid stuff like tires,radio knob location ect..if a speaker blows up they consider the car un reliable by c.r's the Chrysler minivans are the most reliable after 3 years of ownership and the long run is what matters...

Consumer reports gets it wrong many times when it comes to testing they sub contract testing remember the baby seat disaster anyone. They recommend honda ridgeline yet there test say it gats 15 mpg in a compact truck thats horrible my o9 ram with hemi gets 18 mpg. My chrysler vehicles are trouble free for years and yet they say I should have all kinds off problems theyre wrong I have less problems than Toyota. My real world test are what I go by Im not going to drive a Subaru because some Latte drinking mag reader says I should dont be a zombie use it or loose it!!!

@keith...uh wow we drive over 35-40k every year on each vehicle...and dodge is always reliable...i wont bash ur beloved ford brand just to be nice...but i could

@yun dun mun...Wow. I own a Titan BTW. Yes I do like Ford. My next truck will likely be an F250 as my needs have changed. Ask my cousin and 3 I work with others how they like the bumpers rusting off their Ram Sports. FWIW you weren't paying much attention to my post other than seeing my opinion on how Dodges are built. My FIL had no issues with racking up mileage. That wasn't the point. Point was numerous ball joint replacements and the body and interior were not holding up at all. Heck, the center console fell off the hinges one day when I was with him. Even the radio was a POS that didn't last the life of the vehicle. The truck still runs though and is used for logging by his son in Michigan. The body rot got so bad it wasn't road legal anymore. Cummins is still going strong. Outlasted the wrapper Dodge put around it.

well all the dodges we have had been fine...soo ill stick with dodges and drive what you want...i always here crazy stories of how bad chrysler is but never seen anything personally and have no reason to believe the stories whatsoever

FYi, Chrysler/Dodge dropped the lifetime powertrain warranty.

Chris - you won the lottery - finding a Dodge mini van that was reliable. The one I owned was the biggest piece of crap I've ever had the displeasure of owning. It wasn't a one of a kind lemon, we had several friends with the same year of van and they all had similar problems. If you look at Consumer Report and how they rate various areas of a vehicle they did a good job of outlining all the problem areas of the Dodge mini van. Last year they rated it 103% below average. I think Consumer Report does a decent job.
It is important to consider how a brand's entire lineup rates when it comes to quality and reliability. If a brand has many different models with a poor quality rating it shows an overall lack of effort to maintain quality conrol. The Dodge Ram may be rated average right now but how can you be sure they will maintain that level of quality?
I've had a few bad experiences with Dodge as well as problems with the local dealership. I'm not willing to take that chance.
My brother likes Dodges. He drives pickups provided by the company he works for. Most of the trucks are leased for 3 years or 60,000 miles. He gets a new truck every 1 1/2 to 2 years because he hits the 60,000 mark in that short time. He drives mostly on logging roads as his job is to supervise road and bridge maintenance as well as some contruction. He actually likes the Dodge HD. He Doesn't mind the Ford, he hates the GM/Chev's he's been given. Regardless of brand the trucks are usually beat to death by the time he gets a replacement. He doesn't deliberately abuse them. None of the brands fair any better in his job which is kind of ironic since he hates Chevs, likes Dodge, and is indifferent about Ford.
It is amazing how one's personal preference plays a part in how you will rate a truck's performance. It even effects how you will view a vehicle's quality or reliability.
One should carefully research what you are going to purchase. Brand loyalty should be the first thing one should throw out the window, but in the end buy what makes you happy.

About CR making mistakes, ok, I could see CR getting something wrong some of the time. But are they wrong all of the time? CR did not recommend any of the Dodges. Not one. Not a single Dodge car. Wake up Dodge guys and smell what The Lou is cooking!

1. Consumer Reports should stick to rating toasters. They do it like nobody else in the industry.

2. "Ford: 46 of 51 models (90%) have average or better then average quality." I am sure a good bunch of 6.0 Powerstroke owners will vehemently support this statement!!!

Sierra_WT - Reread the article. The 6.0L Powerstroke was gone in 2008. This rates vehicles after that point. It covers the 6.4L which so far has proven to be much better.

Lou, I agree 100% about the Caravan. My best friends parents had 3 of them all three had tranny failures before 80k miles. They saw no hard use, they were his Mom's vehicles. My brother worked on some at a used car dealer. He said they were the only trannies that can in with extra revised parts to be added to try and solve some of the issues when they were installed.

Wake up Dodge guys and smell what The Lou is cooking!
- The Lou.
Someone is trying to get me into trouble....
the "original" Lou.

PS: I can get myself into trouble without outside assistance:)

Chrysler Dealer Technicians Are Admitting Frequently Seeing These Problems, Are Told To Keep Quiet While They Agree With This Website

"I am a technician for a Chrysler dealership in Florida. I fear for my job so I will not disclose what city. The problems this website shows are all true, us technicians are seeing this every day, and yet are told to keep our mouths shut. We are also told to do patch jobs and the parts we need are not given to us. For example, this happened at my own dealership about a year ago. A long time customer of ours, who bought her car from us, had it towed in because it would not run. Her car had the 2.7 liter engine, and had approx. 63,000 miles on it. Later we found out the engine was dead due to oil sludge build up and our warranty claims adjuster blamed her for not maintaining the car. She then produced receipts to show that she had all oil changes done either on time or early at our own dealership. So what does this company do, blame the lube technician at our dealership and throw the engine cost at him. Yes, a 21 year old, barely making a living changing oil all day is now told by Daimler Chrysler that he must pay the repair costs for this lady. This company would rather blame things on its technicians then to admit its own problems. I will soon be leaving this dealership to work for Nissan. This company will throw its own employees under the bus to save itself money. My advice to you as a mechanic would be to never buy a Chrysler, Jeep, Dodge, or Mercedes."

Don't like Consumer Reports? How about the IIHS? Lets see the Dodge guys explain this one.


New IIHS Safest Vehicles List, not one Chrysler LLC vehicle is on it, which is more documented fact to show how Ford and GM continue to improve as Chrysler continues to decline. Ford had 16 vehicles make the list and GM had 8 vehicles that made the list. Chrysler is the only major automaker NOT on the list.

The Dodge Ram may be rated average right now but how can you be sure they will maintain that level of quality? - Lou


That is a very good question. How do you think brand loyalty is affecting the safety ratings?

It's all a conspiracy.........the guys who do the crash tests are on Toyota's payroll.... that's it... that's the reason...they alll work for Toyota... those xxxxing Japaese.... it's their fault.... it's all their fault ;)

I've owned pretty much every make of trucks, and cars. The only one worth the money in the long run are the TOYOTAS, the numbers prove it , the resale proves it, the reliabilty proves it. There are lots of great vehicles out there. I'll stick with the best track record, thanks

The comments to this entry are closed.