The fact that Americans bought over 2.5-million full-size pickup trucks in 2021 makes it clear that full-size, half-ton pickup trucks aren’t merely a vehicle category, but a way of life in the United States. Full-size pickups like the Ford Raptor, the Chevy Silverado, and the Ram 1500 led sales not just among pickup trucks, but among all passenger vehicle segments, which only reinforces just how much Americans fancy themselves their trucks. This doesn’t come as too much of a surprise, either, considering just how versatile pickup trucks have become over the years. Not only can these full-size pickups deliver raw performance and power, but they have phenomenal payload capacities, they are more than capable off the road, conquering every terrain, and lately, even the pickup truck segment has become host to a bevy of technological and luxurious features.
A middle ground between gigantic one-ton trucks and three-quarter-ton trucks, it is the half-ton trucks that deliver more efficiency while never feeling underpowered as a result. Today, the market is rife with remarkable half-ton trucks which offer impressive towing and payload figures, and they all look great, with each truck having unique aesthetic characteristics to set it apart from the pack. For those who don’t need a truly heavy-duty truck, but certainly a workhorse that never complains and gets the job done anyway, half-ton trucks are the go-to choice, and with the plethora of options at a customer’s disposal today , buyers sure are spoiled for choice. That being said, here are the best half-ton pickup trucks in 2022.
8 Nissan Titan
The Nissan Titan has been one of the more popular pickup trucks in the market that are not from an American manufacturer. For the 2022 model year, the Japanese truck comes with minor updates from last year’s model which keeps things fresh, like a spray-on bedliner and a receiver hitch. While the driving manners on the Titan might not match up to its rivals, a 400-horsepower V8 engine as standard remains quite impressive.
Furthermore, there are plenty of safety features that the Nissan Titan comes with, which makes the owner all that more confident in their ride, along with the great Nissan warranty which enhances said confidence. A quick-shifting transmission makes the truck decently fun to drive as well. The Nissan Titan King Cab and the Titan Crew Cab both exceed the half-ton capacity, boasting a payload capacity of 1690 lbs and 1590 lbs respectively.
7 GMC Sierra 1500
The 2022 GMC Sierra comes with a slightly higher price tag than its mechanical cousin, the Chevy Silverado. While both the trucks are from GM, the Sierra boasts a cleaner look, and for the 2022 model year, the GMC Sierra 1500 also received an updated interior. A 12.3-inch digital instrument cluster is the star of the show on the inside. The AT4X or the Denali Ultimate trims of the GMC Sierra are particularly phenomenal trucks that leave very little room for complaints.
With the Super Cruise semi-autonomous driving aid and GMC’s CarbonPro and MultiPro tailgate, the GMC Sierra is a superb truck to bring home in 2022. The truck provides owners with not just a powerful ride, but also versatile storage options, as well as plenty of comfort and luxury, features to make occupants of the cabin happy and satisfied over long rides as well. The GMC Sierra also spoils customers for choice when it comes to engine options, providing a 2.7-liter inline-4 engine, a 3.0-liter inline-6 engine, a 5.3-liter V8, and a 6.2-liter V8 options make 310, 277, 355, and 420 horsepower respectively.
6 Ford F-150
The Ford F-150 has been one of the best-selling trucks in the United States for a staggering number of years now. Very recently redesigned, the F-150 comes with a revised body and interior, and now it even boasts of a hybrid variant in its lineup, which churns out 430 horsepower and 570 lb-ft of torque thanks to its twin-turbo V6 engine and an electric motor. More impressively, the presence of the motor helps the F-150 operate and power several tools simultaneously, including but not limited to a welder as well!
With a max towing capacity of 14,000 lbs and a payload capacity that starts at 1,520 lbs and reaches a class-best 3,325 lbs, the Ford F-150 remains one of the most capable trucks on the market. It is the PowerBoost V6 Hybrid model in particular which is the most fuel-efficient F-150 model across the lineup, while also being the most powerful, at 430 hp and 570 lb-ft of torque.
5 Toyota Tundra
Toyota’s loyalists would be happy to see that the Tundra has an all-new avatar for the 2022 model year. The third generation of the Tundra is a completely new truck and borrows nothing from its outgoing counterpart. Toyota has outfitted the new Tundra with a powerful iForce V6 unit, getting rid of the naturally-aspirated V8 engine. The maximum payload on the 2022 Tundra begins at 1,740 lbs, going all the way up to 1,940 lbs.
The outgoing 2021 Tundra had been a decently capable truck, but could never match up to the offerings from Detroit. For 2022, however, the Tundra now gets a 14.0-inch touchscreen and a 12.3-inch digital gauge cluster which enhances the look of the cabin tenfold. Mated to a smooth 10-speed automatic transmission, the Toyota Tundra now uses coil springs instead of leaf springs. There is now a Capstone trim as well, which is the absolute best when it comes to the luxury side of things. In its new generational avatar, the Tundra from Japan now has the chops to go head-to-head with the likes of Ram, Ford, and GM.
4 Ram 1500 TRX
Ram’s TRX edition of the Ram 1500 was meant to bring supercharged fun to the F-150’s playground, and the truck did not disappoint. The Ram 1500 TRX is certainly the biggest and baddest extreme truck on the market today while remaining a simple and easy-to-use everyday truck for work. With 1,310 lbs of payload capacity, the truck is comfortably past the half-ton bar.
On the inside, too, the Ram 1500 TRX is refined and sophisticated, with an excellent cabin and a lot of available tech which makes the truck a fresh and modern option. By far the biggest star of the show, however, is the 702 hp Hellcat V8 under the hood of the TRX, which provides some high-powered Hemi happiness for customers. Of course, the confidence of knowing your Ram 1500 TRX can take on any possible terrain is also unmatched.
3 Chevy Silverado 1500
The Chevy Silverado is largely identical to its GM cousin, the GMC Sierra. While the GMC Sierra is widely regarded as the more handsome offering, the Chevy Silverado is no slacker in the aesthetics department either. The Silverado offers customers a slew of choices, presenting a range of different engine options which also include a diesel trim. Customers can spec their Silverado in terms of features and technology in a diverse manner, ensuring that each customer specs their Silverado exactly how they need it.
The Silverado proves itself a capable workhorse as well as a luxury-lined commuter, and its big towing capacity and big power do not come at the cost of agility, as the truck handles remarkably well. There’s even the ZR2 variant of the Silverado for off-road enthusiasts. With a payload capacity of one ton, the Silverado does beat several contenders on this list in the load-bearing department.
2 Ford F-150 Raptor
At 1400lbs, the Ford F-150 Raptor sure has a remarkable payload capacity, and its dedicated off-road prowess is what makes it one of the most popular trucks in the world today. No longer does the Raptor come with older leaf springs, it now comes off the assembly line with a five-link coil-spring setup. With massive 35-inch tires that come standard, the Ford F-150 is one of the most iconic trucks ever to have graced American automotive history.
An entire foot (12 inches) of ground clearance on the F-150 is impressive, and it can even be increased to 13.1 inches if one opts for the even bigger 37-inch set of wheels. The truck’s departure, approach, and break angles change for the better with the bigger set of optional wheels. While the Raptor’s closest rivals are the Tundra TRD Pro and the Ram 1500 TRX, the Blue Oval manages to stay in the game with its heritage and enjoyable engine.
1 Ram 1500
There is simply no denying that the Ram 1500 is the best truck on the market today. This doesn’t come as a surprise, as the truck even won the 2019 MotorTrend Truck of The Year award after becoming refined, luxurious, and more versatile than ever before. There simply isn’t a more loaded and technologically-savvy half-ton truck other than the Ram 1500.
The truck comes fitted with gas-powered V6 and V8 options, with a diesel V6 power unit option as well, which returns a remarkable 32 miles to the gallon when driven on the highway. The eTorque hybrid technology that comes standard with the gasoline V6 engine makes the truck even better, and can even be fitted with the Hemi V8 trim. One would be hard-pressed to find a quicker, more powerful, or overall better half-ton truck than the Ram 1500 in 2022, where it stands atop the list of its competitors. The truck’s great safety ratings also make it a more alluring option, and the Ram’s 2,300-lb payload capacity makes it all the more impressive.