Economy Comparison: Full-Size Pickup Trucks

If you want good gas mileage don’t buy a pickup truck. That said, just because you want one doesn’t mean you shouldn’t look for the best economy numbers for the type of truck you’re interested in purchasing. But pickup mileage has a ton of variables because there are different bodies and engines, because of so many different needs.

If you’re going to be hauling a camper or a trailer with your racecar inside, you need torque and power. If mileage is a consideration then a diesel engine is what you need to look for. They get more miles per gallon of fuel compared to a gas engine. Their torque characteristics mean that combined with consideration for mileage this is what you need.

But, what if you’re looking for something to haul the occasional new chair or large Costco purchase? You want a full-size pickup with a gasoline engine. You know, a traditional pickup but with good mileage consideration. Now, what?

We’ve compiled a list of full-size pickups from all of the manufacturers with their advertised mileage figures for each gasoline engine. Some are turbocharged engines, which helps give a bit of extra torque and push from a stoplight while keeping gas consumption down. You might be surprised which trucks rated best and worst, and what those figures are.

Nissan Titan

2019 Nissan Titan | Getty Images

Avg.: 18 City: 15 Hwy.: 21 Engine: 5.6-liter V8

The Titan has been around in its current form for years and is expected to be all-new for 2021. It recently killed the diesel option, so the single 5.6-liter V8 is the only engine offered. 

Ford F-150 2WD 

2020 Ford F-150
2020 Ford F-150 | Ford

Avg.: 22 City: 19 Hwy.: 25 Engine: 3.3-liter Ti-VCT V6

Avg.: 18 City: 16 Hwy.: 22 Engine: 5.0-liter Ti-VCTV8

Avg.: 24 City: 21 Hwy.: 28 Engine: 2.6-liter Ecoboost V6              

Ford’s F-150 is the best-selling vehicle in the US. It is the king of pickups. As such it offers a variety of engines and bodies, along with two-wheel- and four-wheel-drive options. The Ecoboost V6 also scores the best in fuel economy of all of the full-size pickups.

Toyota Tundra 2WD  

2019 Toyota Tundra
2019 Toyota Tundra | Toyota

Avg.: 14 City: 13 Hwy.: 17 Engine: 5.7-liter V8

Avg.: 16 City: 14 Hwy.: 18 Engine: 4.6-liter V8

Surprisingly, the Tundra comes out the worst in mileage. But, here’s another truck that basically has remained unchanged except for minor improvements, for years. It, too, is expected to be completely new for 2021. We expect mileage figures to increase substantially.

Chevy Silverado/GMC Sierra 2WD

Avg.: 19 City: 17 Hwy.: 23 Engine: 5.3-liter Ecotec3 V8

Avg.: 17  City: 16 Hwy.: 21 Engine: 4.3-liter Ecotec3 V6

Avg.: 20 City: 19 Hwy.: 22 Engine: 2.7-liter turbocharged four-cylinder

Completely new for 2019 both the Sierra and Silverado have better mileage than either Toyota or Nissan, but trail Ford and Ram. They are comparable to the others for options, body styles, and appointments.

Ram 2WD

2019 Ram 1500 North Edition
2019 Ram 1500 North Edition | Ram

Avg.: 22 City: 20 Hwy.: 25 Engine: 3.6-liter V6

Avg.: 19 City: 17 Hwy.: 23 Engine: 5.7-liter Hemi V8

Ram was also all-new for 2019, with both an extended cab and crew cab, but not a single cab body. That is available in its “Classic” carry-over previous pickup which it still offers as an entry-level truck.