Pickups at the 2021 Chicago Auto Show
Pickup trucks have long been an American icon. As the world moved to smaller and less-powerful haulers, America instead beefed up and we proudly produce some of the most powerful trucks on the road. Take, for example, the new Ram 3500 Heady Duty. Its maximum towing capacity is more than 35,000 pounds.
But today’s pickups aren’t just about brawn, they are about comfort and capability as well. All models offer roomy crew cab options with four conventional doors and seating for five or six passengers. Many have innovative storage options with in-bed side-saddle trunks and flip-and-fold seats.
Generally, pickups come in four flavors: Compact, Medium, Large and Extra-Large. New to the scene this year are Compact pickups, they are smaller than traditional pickups, utilize a lighter frame or unibody and are front-drive based. Sometimes called “compact,” medium-duty pickups encompass vehicles like the Chevrolet Colorado, Honda Ridgeline and Toyota Tacoma. They aren’t as much about work as they are about utility. They tow and haul moderate loads and usually offer 4-cylinder power. Stepping up to a full-size truck like the Ford F-150, Chevrolet Silverado or Ram 1500 means you get a more powerful turbocharged six or brawny V8 and a significant increase in towing and payload capacity. At the top of the heap are heavy-duty trucks like the Ford Super Duty. They are really intended for serious work like plowing or contractor duty.
One common trait of today’s pickups is that they are getting more civilized and adding more features. Thankfully, there are still work versions available as well.
Whatever your flavor, there is a pickup for you on the show floor. You can find the following pickup trucks on display at the 2021 Chicago Auto Show or at the Vehicles on Display section of the auto show Web site.