2014 Pickup Truck Gas Mileage: Ford Vs Chevy Vs Ram, Who's Best?

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2014 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 LTZ

2014 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 LTZ

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The U.S. will save a lot more gasoline by improving the fuel efficiency of gas-guzzling high-volume pickup trucks than it will swapping out Toyota Corollas for Prius hybrids.

That's mathematical fact.

Now, finally, the makers of the three most popular pickup truck lines sold in the U.S. are boosting the fuel economy offered in new trucks for 2014.

The trend began in 2011, when Ford launched its F-150 with an EcoBoost engine option that delivered V-8 power with the EPA ratings of a V-6 engine.

And it's picking up steam for next year, with GM touting the projected mileage ratings of its all-new 2014 Chevy Silverado and GMC Sierra pickups.

Not all the figures are available yet, but here's our roundup of pickup truck fuel-economy figures--both official and projected--so far.

CHEVROLET SILVERADO: 19 mpg now, 20 mpg to come?

So far, only two models of the new 2014 Chevrolet Silverado pickup have been rated on the EPA site.

The rear-wheel-drive C15 model gets a combined 19 mpg (16 mpg city, 23 mpg highway), and the four-wheel-drive K15 model comes in at 18 mpg combined (16 mpg city, 22 mpg combined).

Those ratings are achieved by the redesigned 5.3-liter V-8 engine paired with a six-speed automatic. The trucks will also be offered with a V-6 and a second V-8 as well.

The previous best Silverado was the Silverado 1500 rear-wheel drive model, rated at 17 mpg combined.

The near-identical 2014 GMC Sierra C15 2WD and K15 4WD models earn exactly the same ratings as their 2014 Chevy Silverado counterparts.

But General Motors said last Wednesday that the 2014 Silverado fitted with its V-6 option will match the best rating for any pickup on the market, which is currently 20 mpg.

The 4.3-liter V-6 paired to a six-speed transmission will achieve a combined 20 mpg rating (18 mpg city, 24 mpg highway) for the rear-wheel-drive model.

Adding four-wheel drive cuts that to 19 mpg combined (17 mpg city, 22 mpg highway).

The base V-6 model will arrive in showrooms by the end of September; the first trucks with the $895 upgrade to the 5.3-liter V-8 are now starting to appear at dealers.

2013 Ford F-150 Lariat

2013 Ford F-150 Lariat

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FORD F-150: 18 mpg

According to spokesman Mike Levine, the 2014 Ford F-150 lineup won't have any changes that affect its fuel-efficiency ratings.

So the best gas-mileage rating for a 2014 Ford F-150 is likely to remain the 18 mpg combined (16 mpg city, 22 mpg highway) for the rear-wheel-drive model with the 3.5-liter EcoBoost turbocharged engine, paired with a six-speed automatic transmission.

Adding four-wheel drive to the EcoBoost engine drops the combined rating to 17 mpg (15 mpg city, 21 mpg highway).

All of Ford's V-8 models do less than the 18 mpg of the rear-drive EcoBoost model.

Ford has been surprised at the sales of the V-6 EcoBoost engine in the F-150. Just four months after launch, it and another V-6 represented one-third of all F-150s sold.

The company says the EcoBoost percentage has grown since then.

RAM 1500: 20 mpg

The current 2013 Ram 1500 was updated to boost gas mileage, with active grille shutters, a new 3.6-liter V-6 engine option, and an eight-speed automatic transmission.

That made it the gas-mileage champ among full-size pickups for 2013, with a 20-mpg combined rating (17 mpg city, 25 mpg highway) in rear-wheel-drive form.

2013 Ram 1500 Off Road: 30 Days Of Ram

2013 Ram 1500 Off Road: 30 Days Of Ram

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Opting for four-wheel drive with that engine/trans combination takes the combined rating to 19 mpg.

If you want a V-8 in your Ram, the 5.7-liter V-8 with six-speed automatic rates 16 mpg combined with rear-wheel drive.

Ram offers no fewer than four engine/transmission combinations in four-wheel-drive Ram 1500 picukps, but that rear-wheel-drive V-6 model remains the champ.

Shortly, Chrysler will launch a Ram 1500 EcoDiesel with a diesel engine for 2014, the only half-ton pickup for that model year to offer one.

It will use the same 3.0-liter V-6 turbodiesel V-6 as in the 2014 Jeep Grand Cherokee EcoDiesel, where it's rated at 240 horsepower and 420 pounds-feet of torque.

Sales are expected to start before the end of September.

We'll update this article in future as more ratings are released.


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Comments (22)
  1. Interestly, almost 3 different approaches to the same problem.

    But who gets the best MPG in "REAL Life" when towing and hauling?

  2. my 2006 ram 1500 with5.7 v 8 hemi auto 4 wheel drive gets 21 mpg highway if conditions are perfect I once got 36 mpg

  3. Too bad VIA Motors doesn't have the volumes to reduce their prices.. EREV pickup trucks and SUVs make a lot of sense.

  4. Especially if they can put in a "built-in" generator power station. It would make the truck very friendly in the eye of construction site and/or remote site works...

  5. Should become one day 35MPG with still good power. If collage kids can get a gas car over 1,000MI why can`t we make trucks with 35MPG?

  6. Correction: if college kids can get a 60lbs toy (can't even carry a cat) over 1,000mpg in a < 25mph test loop then why can't we just stop talking about it?

    That project has no bearing on what a half ton pickup truck will do...

  7. You are right and wrong. It is a light toy that is completely different. However, people actually right in these things (at least the ones my school is in).
    So you are semi right.

  8. A plug-in hybrid option would be great in my mind. Ram has been testing this approach for a few years now but I haven't heard a thing about it for quite a while. Ford and Toyota are working on a hybrid power train together specifically for pickups and suv's. unfortunately this is still probably a few years away.

    I bought a 2013 Ram Crew Cab 4x4 a couple months ago and I've been averaging 15mpg. 80% of my driving is city so I would welcome a hybrid truck. I had originally tried to find a used Silverado hybrid but shied away due to the enormous price tag and the fact that GM abandoned the program.

  9. It is hard to do an atkinson cycle pickup that is powerful enough to haul and tow.

    I think a plugin-diesel electric pickup trucks will work better in this case.

  10. as cool as that would be, it would just be too expensive. i think the automakers are on the right track with vehicle weight reduction and more efficient engines. the 8 speed transmission in my ram is definitely a nice touch, but i wish i could capture all that wasted braking energy like my prius does.

  11. Cost is a factor. But some of those new trucks are easily $50k to $60k. I don't see why they can't make a "luxury version" that does both...

    There are plenty of "rich" truck buyers that are willing to pay for a cushy and luxury pickup trucks with a lot of power. In this case, a diesel-electric truck that they can "brag" about...

  12. Brake less? lol
    I understand what you mean.
    The Prius doesn't capture all the energy either, nothing is 100% efficient.

  13. Looking forward to the 2014 Dodge Ram 1500 with the diesel option.

  14. What ever happened to the hydraulic hybrid. Ford was too introduce it in 2008. "---The standard F-150 has a curb weight of about 4800 lbs., which is 65% greater than theToyota Prius, yet incredibly the Hydraulic F-150 with a continuously variable transmission matches the Prius with 60mpg city rating, that’s an amazing 400% increase over its gasoline version.
    ---The F-150 makes for a perfect host for Hydraulic Hybrid technology because of its height and body on frame construction, adding this system to smaller vehicles will be challenging, but with those kind of numbers small vehicles as we know them may become obsolete...The Hydraulic F-150 is currently scheduled for launch in August of 2008,"
    UPS uses it successfully.

  15. @Jeffrey: While the UPS has tested a variety of experimental vehicles with various powertrains, I don't believe Ford ever announced any plans to produce a hydraulic hybrid. The vehicles you refer to were prototype test vehicles to gather data on the powertrain.

  16. These are not apple to apple comparisons. How about Std v6 to std v6 same model year

  17. @Tommy: As stated in the article, we picked the version(s) with the highest known or projected gas mileage at the time we wrote the article.

    Definitely not apples to apples, but we were focusing on MPG not on comparable specs.

  18. Usually it is the larger engine that suffers less when pulling weight. A V6 will (usually) get you better mileage as it has two less cylinders to feed. Turbo charge the V6 and you can get more power but the more your foot is in the turbo the worse the fuel economy. Not to mention that for every mile traveled the 6 will have more revolutions than an 8 making it wear out sooner. Yea you can put synthetic in it and that helps but the answer is to have the hp and torque when you need it and if you don't have to suffer on fuel economy then it is a win, win. I believe the new GM truck has Ford sweating, maybe not on looks but this truck is spec'd to go the long haul. I have had several of both GM and Ford, drive trains on GM lasted much longer.

  19. Ford launched the ecoboost F150 with one of the best online campaigns in history that will be used as a case study for years to come. Why are they surprised at its success. BTW - I've driven an F150 ecoboost and absolutely adored it, but the backseats are so horrifically uncomfortable that I'll be buying a RAM 1500 instead.

  20. "The U.S. will save a lot more gasoline by improving the fuel efficiency of gas-guzzling high-volume pickup trucks than it will swapping out Toyota Corollas for Prius hybrids."

    This statement is either represents a silly unfair comparison or is flat-out wrong.

    "silly unfair comparison"
    Sure the statement is right if you compare a whole class of vehicles (pickups) to one model of another class (Toyota's version of a compact car). Pickups sell 2,000,000 per year and the Corolla sells 300,000 per year. It is a silly irrelevant comparison.

  21. "Flat out wrong"
    If the proper comparison is "pickups" to "compact cars" then the statement is flat out wrong. Let's say that pickups economy is raised from 18 mpg to 22 mpg. At 2,000,000 sales per year, and 15,000 miles per year, that saves 3.03e8 gallons per year.

    Compact cars sell at 1,800,000 per year. Taking them from 29 mpg to 50 mpg (Prius style) means a savings of 3.91e8 gallons.

    That means that switching compact cars to Priuses saves 30% more fuel than improving pickup truck efficiency.

  22. My 02 F150 gets 20 mpg and it has 160000 miles! 4.6l 4x4 Supercab. Don't believe all the hype. It's just to get you to pay more for the truck. My 86 F150 4x4 got 20 mpg! But my 04 Ranger got 14 mpg on a good day down hill, WTF?

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