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Discussion Starter #1
Had a 2011 Tundra Platinum CrewMax 4x4. It would pull my house off of its foundation if I needed it to, but I absolutely hated all of the amenities that I paid so much money for. Horrid and largely useless navigation system, Bluetooth that kept dropping connection to my phones, archaic voice control system, and far too many things that you SHOULD have been able to do with steering wheel or voice controls but simply couldn't.

Traded that for a 2010 Ford Flex Limited AWD. Ford's AWD system is a misnomer - it's FWD and will automatically engage the rear wheels when needed. Ever try towing in the snow with a FWD vehicle? Not fun going downhill on snowy roads and having a 2000 lb trailer pushing the rear end around. On top of that, the differential blew and was completely inoperable. So, I had NO RWD from the vehicle no matter what. Had to have it replaced under warranty. Sync is junk, navigation left a LOT to be desired, voice control was incredibly clunky. Rode nice and was comfortable though.

Traded that for a 2011 Ford Explorer XLT 4x4. Remember that differential problem I had with the Flex? Same issue with the Explorer. Plus, bad idler pully, passenger side wiper vibrates at 50MPH+, brakes have been replaced (with rotors), Bluetooth is crappy (static), door panel is coming apart at the seams, rear gate doesn't lift properly and it has brand new gas shocks, bad tensioner pulley has caused premature wear to the serpentine belt, USB input for the audio has choppiness in the audio during the first three seconds after the track changes, and it blew an actuator in the climate control and the A/C wouldn't cool the car on a hot day.

I'm looking to dump the Explorer and get back to a truck. RAM is out - I'll never own a Chrysler (Fiat) product again. There's something about the way they design their seats that are absolutely not comfortable for me. I've driven Jeeps, Chryslers, Dodges, and RAM trucks... They're all the same to me - UNCOMFORTABLE.

I had thought for about a second of buying an F-150 (I had a '97 XLT 4x4 that I loved), but laughed that idea off after being so completely disappointed and frustrated with the four Ford vehicles I have owned in the last two years (two for me, two for my wife). Toyota is out because their creature (un)comforts are a joke. The Honda options would be a Pilot (underpowered for towing) or their half-truck (forget the name, but no). The Acura MDX was a nice vehicle all around, but I got rid of my last one when gas prices jumped. They will again. So, no. I'll never own a Nissan again after what they did to me with my Maxima.

That leaves me with GM. The Sierra / Silverado would be something I would consider, but only the 2014/2015 because of the new motors with cylinder deactivation. The problem with these turds is that there are large numbers of them with driveline vibrations that the dealers can't even find let alone fix.

So, the question is, who actually makes a quality vehicle any more that will hold up to the use that it's intended for AND has the ability to be a truly comfortable vehicle?
 

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Have you considered a used truck? There are still 1997 F-150s for sale. :laugh:

Honda claims to be redesigning the Ridgeline for 2016, and despite it's goofy looks everybody I've talked to that has owned one absolutely loved it. Aside from the odd styling, it seems like they really built a quality vehicle.

It sounds like you don't need a big truck, and are looking in the F-150/ 1500 class. Is that about right? What kind of creature comforts do you want? Ford still sells XL trim trucks with manual windows and locks, rubber floors and an AM/FM radio if you just want a true work truck, but if you want fancier gadgets like factory navigation, bluetooth, etc you start moving up trim levels, and adding complexity.

As for who makes a quality vehicle, most manufacturers have a pretty even track record in my opinion. My '07 Ford work truck was great, my '14 Chevy has taken some getting used to but seems pretty sound as well. Both are basic, no option service vehicles though. The fewer options, the fewer opportunities for things to break.
 

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*shrugs* I bought a 2012 Tundra Extended Cab Base model. Saved a ton of money by ignoring the "Platinum" package nonsense and pretty much every other option. I bought mine with the tow package and a sliding rear window. I added my own tow mirrors and an Alpine after-market sound system.

The Alpine system also has the voice response/bluetooth nonsense but quite honestly, I don't use it. I bugs me when I see other people chatting on their phones instead of paying attention to their driving so I don't so that myself. You want to call me? Leave a voice mail and I'll call ya back when I get wherever I'm going. If I need to make a call I pull off the road, park and use my phone to call.

If all the gadgets bother you, then buy a truck that doesn't have them. Same with all the latest/greatest whizzbang engines and transmissions. Let someone else debug them and hold off on buying that stuff until the manufacturer's work all the issues out.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
What I need:

- Bluetooth
- Tow package (MUST have 5k tow capacity, would prefer more in the event that I want to go back to the tougher trailer for hauling heavy loads)
- Rear camera (Ford's SUCK - they don't work properly at night as the CCD sensor isn't sensitive enough for low light conditions)
- Power windows
- Power locks
- Power rear window if it's a truck
- Four Wheel Drive, preference would be with a locking rear diff but NOT at the expense of an off-road suspension package
- Strong 6CYL (SUV) or an 8CYL (truck) - standard gasoline ONLY, and no turbo garbage
- Taller rear end if possible (the Chevys are available with up to a 3.83, I believe, but they seem pretty hard to find)
- Leather seats
- Automatic climate control

What I would LIKE:

- Perforated leather with heat / cool
- All four windows with Auto up/down
- Push-button start
- Remote start
- Integrated garage door opener
- USB input for audio system
- Key (ignition) -operated power outlets (I want them to go off when the ignition is off)
- Assist struts / springs for the tailgate (truck). The Tundra had a nice assist system that made the gate easy to close and never "crashed" down when being opened if you let go of it.

What I don't care about:

- Factory navigation. Quite honestly, I really like my Garmin LMT3590 compared to every system I have ever used EXCEPT the Alpine and Pioneer systems that Honda and Acura used / use.
- Sunroof / moonroof. Waste of money for something I never use. Mind you - in a truck with a power sliding rear window, cracking the roof creates a pretty nice breeze.
- Integrated trailer brake controller. I have a nice Tekonsha that I kept when I dumped the Tundra.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
*shrugs* I bought a 2012 Tundra Extended Cab Base model. Saved a ton of money by ignoring the "Platinum" package nonsense and pretty much every other option. I bought mine with the tow package and a sliding rear window. I added my own tow mirrors and an Alpine after-market sound system.

The Alpine system also has the voice response/bluetooth nonsense but quite honestly, I don't use it. I bugs me when I see other people chatting on their phones instead of paying attention to their driving so I don't so that myself. You want to call me? Leave a voice mail and I'll call ya back when I get wherever I'm going. If I need to make a call I pull off the road, park and use my phone to call.

If all the gadgets bother you, then buy a truck that doesn't have them. Same with all the latest/greatest whizzbang engines and transmissions. Let someone else debug them and hold off on buying that stuff until the manufacturer's work all the issues out.
Giving up the Platinum package also takes away things that I want, though. And, as much as I'd love to go the route of putting pieces in that I need, adding my own sound system and such would take me a ridiculously long time to accomplish because I just don't have the time to do it (and I won't let anyone else do custom work like that on my vehicles).

My job doesn't afford me the option of stopping every time my phone rings. That's why the BT system is an imperative, and it MUST work well. I've had this sort of need going back to the 2006 Acura TL that I bought new. Never had an issue, and I have enough sense to ignore the phone when I see the traffic needs increasing. I happily tell people to Hold On while I'm driving and I have to focus more closely on traffic, turns, etc.

I've considered picking up a much more basic truck, but then I would need another vehicle for the bulk of my work-related driving. And that means ANOTHER car payment. I just want one vehicle to do what I need it to do, and to do it reliably.
 

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That leaves me with GM. The Sierra / Silverado would be something I would consider, but only the 2014/2015 because of the new motors with cylinder deactivation.
Wow, with a track record like that I wouldn't dare recommend anything, but I don't understand your statement above. I have a 2006 Chev Impala SS that has the cylinder deactivation, had a 2009 Chev Avalanche that had it, now have a 2014 Chev Silverado that has it, so this has been around for awhile.

I wish you luck in finding what you want and need.
 

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Unfortunately to get what you want/need requires you to build your own vehicle. I'm not trying to be a smartass; but that's a tall order to cherry pick what you like from each manufacturer.

Maybe if Kenworth built pickups and this was the 70's when it seemed the heavy duty truck manufacturers allowed customization out the wazoo; you'd be in business.
 

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What I need:

- Bluetooth
- Tow package (MUST have 5k tow capacity, would prefer more in the event that I want to go back to the tougher trailer for hauling heavy loads)
- Rear camera (Ford's SUCK - they don't work properly at night as the CCD sensor isn't sensitive enough for low light conditions)
- Power windows
- Power locks
- Power rear window if it's a truck
- Four Wheel Drive, preference would be with a locking rear diff but NOT at the expense of an off-road suspension package
- Strong 6CYL (SUV) or an 8CYL (truck) - standard gasoline ONLY, and no turbo garbage
- Taller rear end if possible (the Chevys are available with up to a 3.83, I believe, but they seem pretty hard to find)
- Leather seats
- Automatic climate control

What I would LIKE:

- Perforated leather with heat / cool
- All four windows with Auto up/down
- Push-button start
- Remote start
- Integrated garage door opener
- USB input for audio system
- Key (ignition) -operated power outlets (I want them to go off when the ignition is off)
- Assist struts / springs for the tailgate (truck). The Tundra had a nice assist system that made the gate easy to close and never "crashed" down when being opened if you let go of it.

What I don't care about:

- Factory navigation. Quite honestly, I really like my Garmin LMT3590 compared to every system I have ever used EXCEPT the Alpine and Pioneer systems that Honda and Acura used / use.
- Sunroof / moonroof. Waste of money for something I never use. Mind you - in a truck with a power sliding rear window, cracking the roof creates a pretty nice breeze.
- Integrated trailer brake controller. I have a nice Tekonsha that I kept when I dumped the Tundra.
How about a car for the amenities and then a real truck for the work?

I have a '97 F250 diesel that is a great truck but it is a truck, solid axles, tough suspension and plain ole interior. When I need a truck it does what a truck was designed to do, work.

When I want to tool around in comfort, get good fuel mileage and have gadgets I get in the car.

The biggest issue you are going to have with your list is every manufacturer has its downfall. While one manufacturer may have Bluetooth connectivity figured out, their voice commands will suck. I don't think one manufacturer can give you the total package.
 

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One of the best trucks I ever owned was a 1997 Ford F-350 with 7.3 PowerStroke engine, automatic, 4-wheel drive, and extended cab.
"IF" I was in the position to have a need for something comparable today, I believe I would most likely pick the new GMC Sierra with automatic coupled with the Duramax diesel engine, 4-wheel drive, extended cab, and leather interior.
 

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If I needed all of those "creature comforts", I'd probably just stay home.

I'll second the idea of deciding what you NEED in a TRUCK, and get that, be it new or used, and get something else for the frills.
 

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I constantly get compliments on my 2010 Ram 2500. People can't believe how well put together it is, being the Laramie package and more less fully loaded.

When I bought it, they only wanted 500 bux over an SLT.

The 2 requirements given to the dealer for a search were Diesel, and Manual. I drive it everyday, it gets 18-20 mpg average and pulls ~16000 lbs in comfort and ease.

Jim
 

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Discussion Starter #13
I'd love to be in a position to have two vehicles - one for the creature comforts for all of the work-related (and pleasure) driving that I do, and a truck to do work. Unfortunately, with the cost of the vehicles themselves, insurance, and TAXES, it's not feasible.

I understand that different companies do certain things very well and others poorly. I've come to love my Garmin, and abhor pretty much all integrated navigation systems. So, I actually prefer a vehicle WITHOUT it. Bluetooth is an absolute must for me because of all of the time I spend on the phone. Leather is much more comfortable over the miles than cloth, and the vehicles that I've had with cooled seats get me there that much more relaxed in the warm weather.

Believe me when I say that I have tried to be honest about the things that must be present, the things that would be nice to have (but I can live without), and the things that I would actually prefer to NOT be there. There are plenty of vehicles out there that I can equip the way that I need (and even want), but the longevity of these things (especially from Ford) is horrid.

The cylinder deactivation I am referring to is specifically in the 5.3L EcoTec V8 that was introduced midway through 2013. It allows that motor (in that truck) to get over 20MPG on the highway. For me, that's kind of a big deal because of all of the highway miles I log. Yet, I would still have all eight cylinders available for when I needed to tow. Again, important for me. The issue is that there are a LOT of people having issues with those trucks vibrating at various speeds. Some have even filed claims with GM and had their trucks bought back. Many have had driveshafts, axles, pinions, differentials, and even transmissions replaced or completely rebuilt with no improvement. And, it isn't tires or wheels either (although it seems more prevalent on the models with 20" wheels - the 18" ones aren't as bad).

I can appreciate the "what a spoiled brat" sort of view that a lot of you are giving this. But, when you log the kind of miles that I do and the sort of work I do, being comfortable behind the wheel AND having some amenities makes a huge difference at the end of every day. I've owned a lot of different vehicles, and driven well over a million miles in them. The ones with the amenities have stuck around much longer than the ones without because they make the task that much more bearable.
 

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I have a 2011 F250 Lariat FX4 6.2 Crew Cab with 3.73 gears (wish it would have had the 4.30's but this thing hauls my 8500 lb 34 ft trailer with no trouble)and other than the interior rattles it is a beast. It has an electric locker in the rear diff, decent control, auto locking front hubs, heated and cooled seats etc. The only things it dosen't have are rear seat dvd and a sun roof. I picked it up used at less than half the sticker price.
 
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I have a 2008 Ram and love it. I agree about the seats and comfort. They put different seats in the different packages. Mine has leather and they are comfortable. I can drive it on long trips and not have any issues. I've been in others that was not so comfortable. I drove more than one until I found mine. It's a quad cab, 4x4, Hemi. It does what I want it to do. It cuts down to 4cyl. on highway and will get 18mpg on long trip. It has trailer tow mode and it works excellent when pulling my 18' trailer with tractor and gear on it. I thought my wifes 2011 Dodge Nitro was great to ride in until I traded my Uncomfortable Chevy truck for the Dodge. Everyones oppinion is different, so it's better to drive more than one vehicle of that make. Try not to base oppinion off driving one Dodge, Ford, Chevy, Tundra, etc... Good luck in finding a truck that fits you and your personality. It took me awhile.
 
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Discussion Starter #17
I have a 2008 Ram and love it. I agree about the seats and comfort. They put different seats in the different packages. Mine has leather and they are comfortable. I can drive it on long trips and not have any issues. I've been in others that was not so comfortable. I drove more than one until I found mine. It's a quad cab, 4x4, Hemi. It does what I want it to do. It cuts down to 4cyl. on highway and will get 18mpg on long trip. It has trailer tow mode and it works excellent when pulling my 18' trailer with tractor and gear on it. I thought my wifes 2011 Dodge Nitro was great to ride in until I traded my Uncomfortable Chevy truck for the Dodge. Everyones oppinion is different, so it's better to drive more than one vehicle of that make. Try not to base oppinion off driving one Dodge, Ford, Chevy, Tundra, etc... Good luck in finding a truck that fits you and your personality. It took me awhile.
I've had a lot of opportunities to drive a lot of different kinds of cars (not SUVs or trucks, mind you) as rentals because of my job. There's just something about the way the Chrysler seats are put into the vehicles that I end up with hip pain after driving them any distance. It was the same with the Ram I owned, my Ex's Jeep Cherokee, and a few other Dodge vehicles (not cars) that I've driven over the years. I would really like to like them because I like the styling, but I'm just not comfortable in them.

Let's try not to say too many bad things about the Ford F150, I just ordered one. :lol:
To be very blunt, Giz, I hope you love yours and it's trouble-free for you. My experience with them has been quite bad over the last two years, and all of them were 2010 and newer models. I've found that ALL of them are lacking in usability when it comes to the Sync stuff. And whenever you challenge Ford on the lack of usability, they tell you there's a new version of the software coming out that fixes that issue (and it's a total lie). With the amount of money I put into them, and the number of miles I drive them (I would rack up the 90k you have on your twelve year old Tundra in three years or less), they simply have to hold up. For me, they haven't. The major thing you have in your favor is that you ordered the more traditional motor and NOT the EcoBoost.
 

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Let's try not to say too many bad things about the Ford F150, I just ordered one. :lol:


We all have regrets in life! :lol:
 

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Not too many bad things to say about the F150. But, JMO. :laugh:
 

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My Farm truck is an F-150 with over 300,000 miles on it! It is a long way from new, but still runs good, and does the job, be it with a loaded bed, or a trailer. I can't see Ford putting crap on the road. But then, I also figure the more new fangled stuff, and automatic switches, computer sensors, etc., that is hung on one, the more things can go wrong.

My F-150 runs an inline 6, and gets 18mpg easily, even with a load.

You are going to love your new truck, Gizmo2!!
 
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