Consumer Reports’ Most Reliable Midsize Pickup Trucks of 2022

The experts at Consumer Reports rank the reliability of compact and midsize pickup trucks in two ways. First, they survey owners of the past three model years of a truck to identify trouble spots and give gently-used trucks a rating. Secondly, they use brand and model history to give each brand-new truck a predicted reliability score. For 2022, the midsize Ford Ranger and compact Honda Ridgeline tied for the most reliable midsize pickup truck.

Which midsize truck is most reliable?

Shockingly, a perennial reliability favorite–the Toyota Tacoma–lost out to two other small trucks. Consumer Reports’ most reliable midsize trucks of 2022 are the Ford Ranger and Honda Ridgeline.

Dog in the bed of a compact pickup truck with mountains visible in the background.
Compact pickup truck | Guilherme Stecanella via Unsplash

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First, Consumer Reports interviewed owners of Ridgelines and Rangers from the past three years. Owners identified very few trouble spots; CR gave the current generation of both the Ford Ranger and Honda Ridgeline the same mid-range score.

For comparison’s sake, CR only gave the current Toyota Tacoma an even lower score. No other small truck scored higher than these three models. The relatively new Jeep Gladiator came in last place.

Based on the history of each brand and model, CR also gave each new 2022 truck a predicted reliability score. Both the Ranger and the Ridgeline earned “above average” scores. TheTacoma only received an “average” score.

Is a Ford Ranger a good buy?

If Ford set out to build a better Tacoma, it seems the Blue Oval has succeeded. The Ranger is a great all-around vehicle and earned one of Consumer Reports’ top scores of 2022.

Red Ford Ranger midsize pickup truck off-roading across sand, a dirt bike in its bed.
2021 Ford Ranger Tremor | Ford Motor Company

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In 2019, the first year of the new Ranger, Consumer Reports had concerns about the truck’s transmission, drive system, and suspension. But by the 2021 model year, Ford had addressed those problems and the truck’s reliability rating skyrocketed.

CR reviewers also love that the Ranger is fuel-efficient for its class and maneuverable for its size. High points include its comfort, driving experience, and acceleration.

If you’re still hankering for a full-size Ford truck, check out the cost-effective entry-level F-150 trims.

Why is the Ridgeline not a truck?

Reviewers such as Consumer Reports love the Honda Ridgeline. But some truck enthusiasts claim it’s not a real pickup. This is because of the Ridgeline’s unibody construction, more akin to a crossover car than a truck or SUV.

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Early motor vehicles featured body-on-frame construction: Automakers attached the powertrain and axles to a ladder-shaped frame, then set a body atop that frame. By the 1950s, engineers found that attaching the axles and powertrain to a reinforced body reduced a car’s weight. But because this “unibody” construction reduced overall strength, trucks and SUVs remained body-on-frame.

Improved unibody construction led to increasingly stout crossover cars and crossover SUVs. Today, unibody trucks include the Hyundai Santa Cruz, Ford Maverick, and Honda Ridgeline.

Consumer Reports loves the Ridgeline’s powertrain, driving experience, and comfort. But the organization is also wary of the Ridgeline’s body integrity and body hardware.

See how the Hyundai Santa Cruz, Ford Maverick, and Honda Ridgeline make efficient use of the smallest truck beds. Or watch the Ranger and Ridgeline go head-to-head in the video below:

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