Best Small (Compact) Pickup Trucks 2018-2019

When buyers are up to buy a truck, what do they have in the offer? If they don’t have a favorite, then it is not easy to decide between compact and full-size truck. Both segments have their pros and cons, and then everything is up to personal feelings and preferences So, good analysis and show of advantages and lacks is welcome. In our review, we will try to show why are small pickup trucks better, and what are lacks of this segment. Also, read more about the best compact trucks for the 2018-2019 season.


This is the major deficit of the compact truck. However, this could be a blessing in disguise. Why we will find out later. It is obvious that full-size trucks are coming with bigger engines capable to produce more horses. For example, Chevy Silverado and make 120 more horsepower than its smaller sibling Colorado. Toyota Tundra, as a big brother of compact Tacoma, is delivering 150 ponies more. Of course, this leads to better towing capacity and payload. So, this is definitely a lead for full-size class.

Best Small Pickup Trucks 2018-2019


Big engine, to deliver more power, needs more fuel. As simple as that. Let’s take again Chevy and Toyota trucks as examples. Tacoma, the smaller vehicle, goes 5 miles more per gallon than Tundra. Silverado is offering better mileage than its rival, but 8 mpg worse than entry-level Colorado model is taking.  So, it is obvious that mileage is on the side of small trucks. So, if you don’t need a big mule to tow a lot of stuff often, the compact class would be very economical.


Finally, the price –the most important thing for every purchase and buying. Is it needed to say that compact crossovers are cheaper? The smaller vehicle, less material, and compact engine are definitely cost less. But, does savings can make up the lack of power? If you buy a new Colorado, instead of Chevrolet Silverado, you will save almost $10,000. We don’t take savings of fuel economy here. The difference in starting MSRP price of Toyota’s trucks is also significant. We can add also less expensive maintenance and parts, so it is clear now that small truck segment is the much better solution for these truckers not looking for big outputs.

Among many exciting trucks we expect more or less changed in 2019, let’s see what we can expect from leaders in compact pickup class.

2019 Ford Ranger – Return or replacement?

Ford as an absolute leader in the segment is causing the most attention with every model. Ranger is not dominant in small truck class. It was one of the reasons why it was discontinued in 2011. It seems like that time for return has come. The 2019 Ford Ranger could make its fans happy, and it is not a low number of potential buyers.

The US carmaker is going to follow interest for this model, and we assume they would rather pick return, than replacement. In another case, there are rumors about F-100. We are sure this is a plan B if something goes wrong with 2019 Ranger.

2019 Ford Ranger

2019 Jeep Scrambler is coming back after the long pause

Probably the most attention for 2019 season is on Scrambler truck. Only official confirmation from the company is missing, but all rumors point into this. We already know that mall pickup truck will use the same platform as Wrangler crossover. However, it will carry the Scrambler name.

The highlight of this truck will be its big engine for this class. It is a 3.0-l V-6 diesel. However, it seems too powerful for a compact pickup. So, the jeep can install a 2.0-l Hurricane instead. From spy shots, we can spot 3-piece top and boxy look. Well, these are trademarks of the company. All in all, the 2019 Jeep Scrambler will be at top of the charts until its release date.

Read 2019 Jeep Scrambler full review

2019 Jeep Scrambler

2019 Nissan Frontier produced on the US soil!

Yes, you read it well. Nissan is moving production to Mississippi. Among other vehicles will be 2019 Nissan Frontier. This will raise the competitiveness of the small pickup truck. The most obvious reason is simple – lower production costs. Already considered as one of the biggest threat to US carmakers, Nissan will make more controversies with this move.

Nevertheless, this is the most exciting news about Frontier, but not the only about future model. Built on the same platform, the look is unchanged, as well as performance. However, designers will have to make the truck more appealing and stylish. Also, fans can expect safer and more comfortable pickup.

2019 Nissan Frontier

2018 Toyota Tacoma upgrades of off-road capabilities and TRD package

Unlike the Frontier, new 2018 Toyota Tacoma will bring most changes for its driving system. Big redesign or a new generation is in plans, but it will happen after 2020. By then, Toyota will continue to update its TRD package. Every lover of off-road adventures who had a chance to drive Tacoma with this package knows why the Japanese carmaker is developing it. Maneuvering and handling are on another level. Thanks to special suspensions and shocks, 2018 Tacoma will be even better.

Read about 2018 Tayota Tacoma TRD Pro

2018 Toyota Tacoma

2018 Honda Ridgeline – Base or Type R

Similar to Toyota and TRD package, Honda is well-known of their Type-R models. These are performance-tuned vehicles, made to satisfy many needs of passionate truckers. Compact trucks can’t deliver so much power. But, 2018 Honda Ridgeline is about to change that. Standard pickup will be similar to a current vehicle. It will be capable to deliver 280 hp.

But, everything changes with Type R. This model is getting a special drivetrain system. Heart of it will be a 3.5-l turbocharged, directly-injected VTEC V-6 engine. In combination with a manual gearbox and special camshafts, 2018 Honda Ridgeline Type R can produce 450 hp and 420 lb-ft of torque.

Check out our review about 2018 Honda Ridgeline

2018 Honda Ridgeline

2018 Chevrolet Colorado Cosmetic changes

The 2018 Chevrolet Colorado will get a mid-cycle update without any significant change. Both exterior and interior will be refreshed. Outside, front fascia gets a new look, with a revisit of grille and bumpers. Also, LED headlights will boost overall safety. Cabin features and equipment will depend on cab configuration. Small pickup will keep its starting price close to $20,000.

However, there will be again plenty of options to build a perfect truck for yourself. Three different engines, with both petrol and diesel fuel, are enough for someone. Also, there are 2WD and 4WD modes. Trim levels include again ZR1 and ZR2 versions, which received excellent feedback in past.

Read about 2018 Chevy Colorado ZR2 off-road truck

2018 Chevrolet Colorado

2018 GMC Canyon in the shadow of big brother

Last, but not the least, we will talk about 2018 GMC Canyon. As another US company turned its attention to trucks, GMC seems to drop in the pecking order. Ford and Chevrolet are more popular in the US, but still, the third carmaker manages to keep up. This is thanks to two pickups.

For the upcoming season, small truck Canyon could be revisited. However, the company is launching a brand-new full-size Sierra. This model caused a lot of interest, and GMC will turn entire attention to it. On the other hand, Canyon will hope that truckers won’t forget about it, although it can pick up some parts and solutions from its bigger sibling. Surely, Denali version will be very interesting to see.

Read a review about 2018 GMC Canyon Denali

2018 GMC Canyon Denali