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9 Good Used Pickups Under $5,000 for 2019

You might be feeling like it’s tough to find a good truck on a tight budget. But there are always capable, reliable, cheap pickups out there, and with a little patience, you’ll be able to find one that suits your needs quite well. Here, we’ll take a look at nine used pickups available for around $5,000 or less.

1998-2011 Ford Ranger

1. 1998-2011 Ford Ranger

While the Ranger makes a triumphant return for the 2020 model year, it’s the old model, sold from 1998 to 2012 that buyers can pick up for under $5,000. Right now on Autotrader, there are around 500 used Rangers that would work for someone on this budget. Keep in mind though that many of these are 2-wheel drive examples. If you want 4-wheel drive, your options are cut to 150. While the other trucks on this list are available in convenient 4-door crew cab configurations, the old Ranger was only offered in single and extended cab variants, meaning that it probably won’t make a good family vehicle. Still, if it’s old-school simplicity you’re after, the Ranger will do just fine. Find a Ford Ranger for sale

2004-2012 Chevrolet Colorado

2.2004-2012 Chevrolet Colorado and GMC Canyon

When it came out in 2004, the Colorado replaced the aging S-10 pickup. Four- and 5-cylinder engines were offered over the years, as was a unique V8 option that was available from 2009 to 2012, although you won’t find any of these at the $5,000 price point. Right now on Autotrader, there are about 150 2004-2012 Colorados listed for about $5,000 or less. 50 of these come with 4WD.

Buyers should also consider the Colorado’s mechanically identical twin, the GMC Canyon. The first-generation Canyon was offered over the same model years as the Colorado and with the same engines. The Canyon isn’t quite as common as the Colorado, but there are still around 30 listed on Autotrader that would work for our budget. Find a Chevrolet Colorado for sale or Find a GMC Canyon for sale

2004-2008 Ford F-150

3. 2004-2008 Ford F-150

A used Ford F-150 is one of the most common used pickups out there and there are currently numerous to choose from on Autotrader at the $5,000 mark. The majority of these are 2004-2008 models from the F-150’s 11th-generation body style. The 11th-gen F-150 came with three different engines: a 210-horsepower V6, and a trio of V8s making up to 300 hp and 365 lb-ft of torque. Right now on Autotrader there are about 400 04-08 F-150s listed for within out budget. Many are 2WD models, but there are still around 175 4WD examples listed. Additionally, since the F-150 is so popular as a work truck, many of these are lower-end trim levels with high mileage. But as the F-150 is the best-selling vehicle in America, it won’t be hard to find cheap replacement parts to spruce up a tired old truck. Find a Ford F-150 for sale

1998-2004 Nissan Frontier

4. 1998-2004 Nissan Frontier

Given its old school design, the Nissan Frontier is one of the newest pickups you’ll find for around $5,000. Buyers can pick from two different generations when browsing for a sub-$5,000 Frontier, with options available from both of the past two generations. Early examples of the second-gen Frontier, which came out for 2005, can be found for under $5,000, although these are mainly 2WD examples with high mileage. The majority of sub-$5,000 Frontiers listed on Autotrader are from the 1998 to 2004 model years, but these are still somewhat scarce, with only around 100 listed for around $5,000. Find a Nissan Frontier for sale

1999-2013 Chevrolet Silverado 1500

5. 1999-2013 Chevrolet Silverado 1500

There are a wide variety of Silverados to choose from on Autotrader for around $5,000, with around 600 listed that would fit the bill. Many of these are simple work trucks in single-cab, long-bed, 2WD configuration with high mileage. As work trucks need to be reliable though, most of these will have been well maintained despite showing considerable wear and tear. If you need something more livable day-to-day, consider an earlier model from the 1999-2006 model years and there are close to 400 to choose from on Autotrader. As was the case with the smaller Colorado, remember to include the Silverado’s mechanically identical GMC counterpart, the Sierra in your search, which will add about 200 options to your search results. Find a Chevrolet Silverado 1500 for sale

1995-2004 Toyota Tacoma

6. 1995-2004 Toyota Tacoma and 1988-1994 Toyota Pickup

Thanks to its great resale value, which is a testament to its reliability and longevity, it’s tough to find a cheap Toyota Tacoma. Still, there are some out there from the models first generation, which ran from 1995 to 2004, and buyers currently have around 100 to choose from on Autotrader, although fewer than 40 have 4WD. If you’re really after a Toyota, consider the previous-generation model, which was dubbed simply the “Toyota Pickup” and offered from 1988 to 1994. Find a Toyota Tacoma for sale or Find a Toyota Pickup for sale

1997-2011 Dodge Dakota

7. 1997-2011 Dodge Dakota

The long-running Dodge Dakota was discontinued back in 2011, and buyers can currently find one for about $5,000 with relative ease, with 400 currently listed on Autotrader. Among the best options are examples from the Dakota’s third and final generation, which was sold from 2005-2011, and there are currently about 50 listed on Autotrader with 4WD, and 50 without. Step down to the second-gen Dakota, offered from 1997-2004, and there are over 250 to choose from, 150 of which have 4WD. Find a Dodge Dakota for sale

1999-2017 Ford F-350

8. 1999-2017 Ford F-350

The massive utility offered by heavy-duty trucks means that they tend to experience slower depreciation than their lighter-duty counterparts, and therefore, finding a heavy-duty truck for under $5,000 can be tough. Still, they’re out there, and there are currently over 150 Ford F-250s, F-350s and F-450s listed on Autotrader for about $5,000 or less. Many of these trucks lived their prior lives as work vehicles, and are fitted with utility gear, dump beds or snow plows, which can be a huge plus for anyone in need of this type of setup. Target your search around the 1999-2007 model years for a good balance of value and modernity. Find a Ford F-350 for sale

2002-2008 Ram 1500

9. 2002-2008 Ram 1500

Rounding out the full-size American made pickups on this list is the Ram 1500. The Ram 1500 offers great towing and payload capacity, not to mention attractive styling and an available 5.7-liter V8 putting out 345 hp. Currently on Autotrader, buyers with a budget of around $5,000 have over 300 2002-2008 Ram 1500s to choose from. As is the case with all the trucks on this list, 4WD examples tend to command a premium on the used market, and just under half of these $5,000 Rams offer 4-wheel traction. Find a Ram 1500 for sale

Chris O'Neill
Chris O'Neill
Chris O'Neill is an author specializing in competitive analysis, consumer recommendations, and adventure-driven enthusiast content. A lifelong car enthusiast, he worked in the auto industry for a bit, helping Germans design cars for Americans, and now lives in Salt Lake City, Utah. He runs an Instagram account, @MountainWestCarSpotter, which in his own words is "actually pretty good", and has a... Read More about Chris O'Neill

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