Combining pickup truck utility with four-door comfort, this list of the best used crew cab trucks evaluates cost, comfort, and of course capability.
When it comes to evaluating the best used crew cab trucks on the market, it’s worth spending a moment defining the term “crew cab”. Pickup trucks generally offer three cab configurations. There’s the traditional regular cab with two doors and a single row of seating. Then there’s the extended cab that adds one or two half-size rear doors to enable rear jump seat access.
Last but not least is the crew cab, which typically entails four full-size doors and true 5- or 6-passenger seating. The actual name of this configuration varies by manufacturer, like Ford’s Super Crew or a Tacoma Double Cab, but this style has become increasingly popular over the years as it allows a pickup truck to combine workhorse utility with family-friendly cabins. For contractors, crew cabs make easy work of shuttling workers to the jobsite, which is why they make this list. So, let’s look at some of the best options across the used crew cab truck marketplace.
The third, and final, generation of Chrysler’s midsize pickup truck offering, the Dodge Dakota arrived in 2005 with a revamped suspension and rack-and-pinion steering. The 2008 and later models featured a mid-cycle refresh with cargo box utility rails, available heated rear seats, and a power bump on the 4.7L V8 engine that brought it to 310 hp and 330 lb-ft of torque.
These V8 Dakotas could tow up to 6,700 pounds, haul about 1,800 pounds, and offered 36 inches of rear legroom for the crew cab. Base ST models were of the hand-crank window and vinyl upholstery variety, while upscale Laramie trim brought a premium stereo and power accessories. You can expect to pay about $17,000 for a 2010 model with 65,000 miles.
Though the second-generation Frontier got to be quite long in the tooth, it makes this list of best crew cab trucks thanks to a stout 6,300-lb tow rating, long-lasting 4.0L V6 rated for 261 horsepower, and the option for a 6-speed manual transmission. An overhaul in 2009 added softer-touch cabin materials, Bluetooth connectivity, and available dual-zone automatic climate control. Rear legroom is on the tight side at just under 34 inches, but a 2009 model with well under 100,000 miles will only set you back about $16,000. And if your vehicle tastes lean to the obscure, be sure to look for the badge-engineered Suzuki Equator.
Toyota sells its crew cab Tacoma as a double cab, but it has full-size rear seats and four doors, so it is included here. Of course, it is also one of the most popular midsize pickups known far and wide for staggering reliability. Examples with 300,000 miles are not unheard of. The second-generation Tacoma kicked off in 2005 and brought with it a new 4.0L V6 rated for 236 hp and 266 torques.
The composite bed features tie-down cleats and when properly equipped, the “Taco” can tow up to 6,500 pounds. The rear seat is not all that spacious with just 32.6 inches of legroom and creature comforts are of the more utilitarian variety, but 2009 models brought a facelifted exterior and the option for a backup camera. A used 2009 model showing 70,000 miles goes for about $20,000.
Something of the odd man out in the world of pickup trucks since inception in 2006, the Honda Ridgeline is nonetheless a capable crew cab truck. For those looking to combine the utility of a pickup truck bed with the ride of a car, the Ridgeline is for you. It cannot handle 10,000 pounds of towing, but the 5,000-pound max rating is still enough for weekend fun.
The Ridgeline boasts nearly 37 inches of rear legroom, trick cargo bed wall speakers, and the kind of cabin serenity that comes with unibody construction. The second-gen model, which arrived in 2017, also offers Honda Sensing, the automaker’s latest suite of advanced driver aids and triple-zone automatic climate control. Given its relative newness, these are pricier with a 2017 model running about $26,000 with 65,000 miles.
Like the Honda Ridgeline, Jeep’s Gladiator is not your typical crew cab truck. Essentially a Wrangler with a cargo bed, the Gladiator has the distinction of offering four fully removable doors, a flip-down windshield, and a canvas roof. New in 2020, the Gladiator is pricey with a used model showing 20,000 miles costing about $35,000. But if you plan to go off-road on a regular basis, the Gladiator is worth your time.
The Jeep Gladiator offers four different 4WD systems and a hardcore trail machine in Rubicon trim. The base 3.6L V6 can be paired with a 6-speed stick and there is a turbodiesel option rated for 442 lb-ft of torque, the latter of which helps the Gladiator land on our breakdown of pickups with the best fuel economy. These Jeep pickups can handle 7,650 pounds of trailering, 1,7000 pounds of payload, and offer such modern niceties as a Wi-Fi hotspot, Apple and Android smartphone mirroring, and heated front seats.
Given its long-time sales dominance, finding a used Ford F-150 in crew cab configuration is a relatively easy task with tons of choices. However, the 12th generation is a good place to start as it introduced a heavily revised F-150 lineup that showcased higher quality interior materials and the first use of Ford’s SYNC infotainment system. A 2011 refresh added a 5.0L Coyote V8 for traditionalists along with a new 3.5L twin-turbo V6. Dubbed EcoBoost, this now ubiquitous turbocharged powertrain was potent with its 365 horses and 420 torques.
Amenities like a backup camera, two-tone leather seating, and a power sunroof ensured a cozy cabin, and the crew cab models could tow as much as 9,300 pounds. Looking over the Carsforsale.com listings, you can find a 2011 F-150 crew cab with around 80,000 miles for less than 20 grand. For those with a bigger budget and in need of even more capability, check out our preview of the latest Ford Super Duty.
The foil to Ford’s F-150, Chevy’s equally prolific Silverado 1500 represents a strong option in the used crew cab truck category. Third-generation models arrived in 2014 with a fully-boxed frame, MyLink infotainment with a touchscreen interface, and a choice of two stout LS-series V8 motors. Initially paired with a 6-speed automatic, the 5.3L and 6.2L eight cylinders received an 8-speed automatic just one year later in 2015. The 5.3L was rated for 355 hp and 383 lb-ft of torque, while the big 6.2 churned out 420 horses and 460 torques.
Max towing for a crew cab model is 9,400 pounds and the payload tops out at just about 1,800 pounds. Chevy’s Silverado continues to impress with the 2021 model dominating this cargo capacity comparison. And if you’re after a higher degree of luxury, there is always the mechanically common GMC Sierra that offers a fancy Denali trim with loads of creature comforts. A 2015 Silverado 1500 crew cab with around 70,000 miles is currently running about $25,000.
From the Chrysler side of Detroit’s Big Three pickup truck triangle comes the Ram 1500, another perennial contender for best full-size crew cab truck. When the fourth generation bowed in 2009, it was boasting a 5.7L V8 bearing the legendary HEMI nameplate. Good for a healthy 390 horsepower and 407 lb-ft of twist, this motor initially paired with a 5-speed automatic and could tow up to 8,700 pounds.
Features like the Rambox integrated bed storage helped set the new Ram 1500 apart, but the 2013 refreshed models really stood tall with their introduction of a highly regarded air suspension system that dramatically improved ride comfort. This is one reason the 2021 model won our full-size pickup comparison. Other upgrades that make the 2013 model compelling are the more potent engine ratings and the available 8-inch infotainment touchscreen. Figure on about $22,000 for a nicely equipped version with 60,000 or so miles.