All cars can tow, even the pocket-sized Smart ForTwo can pull a small load, although some do with more grace than others. If you occasionally take bags of leaves or sacks of debris to the dumpster, you can get away with hitching your trailer to your car on a daily basis.
In the case of trucks, they are powerful, comfortable, luxurious, and roomy vehicles. To the entertainment features and other customizable options that respond to the needs of the most demanding, they add powerful but low consumption engines, and most importantly, towing and payload capacity are the most important aspects of a pickup truck for many shoppers.
But if you regularly pull truly heavy loads, such as boats, trailers, or campers, you need a truck that is up to the task. From midsize to heavy-duty models, the following are the top ten trucks if you care about towing capacity.
Ram 3500 HD
The new 2021 Ram Heavy Duty 3500 hit dealerships last December offering several features to make the heavy lifting easier.
In collaboration with Cummins, the diesel engine enhancements for 2021 include increased power thanks to a variable geometry turbo and increased fuel flow rate. These settings allow the 6.7-liter inline 6-cylinder Cummins engine to generate an additional 75 lb-ft of torque and outperform the competition with a final torque of 1,075 lb-ft of torque, without losing the efficiency and durability characteristic of a diesel engine.
Increasing fifth-wheel towing capacity to 37,100 pounds is possible by a hitch designed in-house by Ram Engineering and enables the Ram 3500 HD to tow the heaviest trailers in the industry.
So, if what you’re looking for is simply the truck with the highest towing and hauling capacity, the Ram Heavy Duty 3500 is rated as the most powerful and capable truck in its category, with a 37,100-pound towing capacity using a gooseneck hitch.
Ford F-450 Super Duty
Heavy-duty pickup trucks like the 2021 Ford F-Series Super offer more power and capabilities for hard work. So, to move huge payloads, massive trailers, or something smaller, a half-ton truck is just not going to cut it, you need to be in F-450 territory.
If you’re into big boats, horse trailers, or fifth-wheels, the Lariat and Platinum trims with their extra luxuries might be for you, especially for long trips, but even the XLT can do the job. The XLT is available with regular or crew cab and comes with the maximum towing and hauling capabilities, plus essentials like Sync 3 infotainment, Co-Pilot360 safety systems, among other features.
The maximum towing and hauling capacity of the F-450 Super Duty is a staggering 37,000 pounds thanks to its 6.7-liter diesel V8 turbocharged engine. Just keep in mind that the F-450 is a very heavy truck. So, the combination of the added weight and a thirsty engine translates to about 10 mpg fuel consumption, compared to an average of 12 mpg for the F-350 and 14 mpg for the F-250.
GMC Sierra 3500 HD
While heavy-duty pickups focus heavily on towing prowess and being a complete workhorse, the GMC Sierra 3500HD tries to hit the sweet spot. It’s a pickup truck that can keep your family sitting comfortably in your cab while hauling or towing large loads.
The Sierra strikes a great balance between work capabilities and ride quality. It’s not very good when it comes to off-roading, though, but it’s a brilliant choice for people looking for a powerful truck that excels in towing and hauling capabilities, complemented with a comfortable and hassle-free ownership experience.
This new Sierra offers many improvements over its predecessor and promises to be better value for money this time. Starting at about $ 36,800, the 2021 GMC Sierra 3500HD can produce 445 horsepower and 910 pound-feet of torque with its 6.6L turbo-diesel V8 engine.
The 2021 GMC Sierra 3500HD Regular Cab, which is available in two versions only. The diesel Sierra 3500HD can tow up to 35,500 pounds. The gasoline engine enables a max payload of 7,442 pounds when equipped with dually wheels.
Chevrolet Silverado 3500 HD
Today more than ever, the rivalry between Heavy Duty pickups is extremely close since what it sells are the performance figures. And in this quest to create the best pickup, Chevrolet presents itself with the Silverado 3500 HD, the strongest and most competent in the history of this vehicle. The Silverados are some of the most reliable trucks on the road and are a popular choice for those looking for a vehicle with real towing capabilities.
The new Silverado 3500 HD from Chevrolet features a 6.6-liter Duramax V8 Turbo-Diesel engine that pushes out 445 hp and 910 pound-feet of torque along with an all-new 10-speed automatic transmission.
Additionally, all components between the transmission and the wheels have been updated to allow for an available 52 percent increase in maximum towing capacity, reaching 35,500 pounds.
To complement the Silverado’s mighty engine, this truck comes with Chevrolet’s Autotrac two-speed active transfer case on 4×4 models with “4 Auto” mode, which allows traction to change smoothly depending on road conditions.
Ford F-250 Super Duty
The first-generation F-Series truck was introduced in 1948. And Ford’s Super Duty line represents the pinnacle of the company’s pickup truck technology and capabilities.
The 2021 Ford F-250 Super Duty is a light truck that can transport small payloads around town or a small family. It offers more capacity than the light-duty F-150 and a more affordable price than the F-350 or F-450 Super Duty trucks. It also combines impressive utility with everyday ease of use.
Ford’s F-Series pickup trucks stand out as one of the toughest and most reliable pickup trucks in the segment. The F-250 has a sophisticated engine design and all the luxury features and technology with a towing capacity that can easily compete with the others.
The most capable powertrain configuration for towing with F-250 Super Duty is the 6.7L V8 Power Stroke engine that delivers an impressive maximum conventional towing capacity of 20,000 pounds, achieved with up to 475 horsepower and 1,050 pound-feet of torque.
Ford-s F-250 Super Duty offers more than rivals do for the same price or even more expensive trucks. A decently powerful engine, larger bed, and better payload capacity.
GMC Sierra 2500 HD
Last year, the GMC Sierra 2500HD returned with a fresh look and features, ready to claim its crown among a growing field of opulent trucks. To do this, the Sierra now offers some additional standard features and high-quality interior materials.
All models are available with a 6.6-liter V8 gasoline engine with 401 horsepower and 464 pounds of torque, mated to a six-speed automatic transmission. You can also choose a 6.6-liter Duramax V8 turbo-diesel with 445 horsepower and 910 pounds of torque, paired with a 10-speed automatic transmission.
The maximum towing capacity of the GMC Sierra HD AT4 version is 18,500 pounds and a maximum payload capacity of 3,862 pounds.
The Sierra 2500 HD doesn’t offer the nearly indestructible carbon fiber body that the half-ton Sierra 1500 does. GMC puts more effort into design, driving comfort, and interior quality, something that has its competitors Ford and Ram on edge, who are taking the luxury of their heavy trucks to another level. So, if you are looking for a heavy-duty truck that is well equipped and highly capable, the Sierra 2500 is worth considering.
RAM 1500 Mild-Hybrid
The new RAM 1500 with eTorque mild-hybrid system is a beast that combines luxury, technology, and power. This luxury pickup, which by the way is the only hybrid on our list, sets superior standards within the category. Although the competition will be tougher because of the new generation of the Ford F-150, this model will continue to be one of the most serious rivals in its segment.
Driving this new hybrid RAM is a show of power thanks to its 5.7-liter HEMI V8 engine with Mild-Hybrid eTorque system, which offers an output of 395 horsepower and 410 pound-feet of torque. It also integrates a smooth and efficient 8-speed automatic transmission. The maximum towing capacity of this RAM is 12,750 pounds and a payload capacity of 1,830 pounds.
This RAM mild-hybrid stands out for its firm steering, safe braking, and smooth ride that adds a lot to passenger comfort. The self-leveling suspension system has 4 modes of operation and a 4×4 system with an Anti-Spin rear axle and 4×4 coupling with Shift-On-Demand, ensure solvent driving on difficult terrain.
Nissan Titan XD
Ever since the 2016 diesel-powered Nissan Titan XD let us down, we’ve been waiting for Nissan to improve its truck. However, in 2020, Nissan stopped producing the Titan XD with the 5.0-liter Cummins V8 diesel engine and replaced it with a 5.6-liter V8 petrol engine which increased its towing and payload capacity.
This new generation Titan XD is a dedicated heavy-duty truck that offers the highest towing and payload capacity in Nissan’s pickup truck lineup. It can tow up to 11,040 pounds and has a maximum payload of 2,390 pounds.
That towing capacity is less than almost all other full-size trucks. Only the Toyota Tundra and its 10,200-pound limit is worse, while more capable rivals can pull over 12,000 or 13,000 pounds. Payload capacity, on the other hand, is among the best in the class.
Towing aids include an integrated trailer brake controller, trailer sway control (TSC), a Tow Mode with descent rate control, and a trailer light control system. Nissan says the Titan XD is also the only truck that comes from the factory with a standard gooseneck hitch, available on SV models and above, that mounts to the truck’s frame.
With a towing capacity of 10,200 pounds, drivers who prioritize towing capacity can hitch a motorhome, trailer, or boat for their next adventure. This is besides an available payload capacity of 1,730 pounds. Of course, the maximum towing capacity of the Tundra is achievable depending on the model and equipment you choose, as well as other factors.
There are several features that contribute to the Toyota Tundra’s strong towing capacity including Strong TripleTech ™ frame with an integrated trailer hitch receiver, a trailer hitch that uses 12-bolt high endurance, a tow/haul mode, which increases throttle response and stays in lower gears longer, and an available integrated trailer brake controller among other features.
You can reap all the benefits of the Tundra thanks to the two stars of the show, the truck’s i-FORCE 5.7L V8 engine made of aluminum that produces 381 horsepower and 401 pound-feet of torque and its six-speed electronically-controlled automatic transmission with (ECT-i) intelligence that features sequential shift mode and shift up / down logic.
Rear-wheel drive is standard, but 4WDemand (part-time four-wheel drive) is available on some models.
It may surprise you to find the Jeep on this list. However, like all Jeep models, the Gladiator comes with strong tow ratings.
The Jeep Gladiator is a true force of nature and it goes without saying that it’s the largest model from Jeep. It derives directly from the Wrangler, one of the most iconic SUVs in the world. It’s also the first pickup truck from Jeep and its versatility and capabilities are beyond doubt. The Gladiator combines the best of both worlds, excellent off-road capabilities, and unmistakable style.
Under the hood of the Gladiator, there’s a 3.6-liter Pentastar V6 engine with 285hp and 260 lb-ft of torque, coupled to an 8-speed automatic transmission and 4×4 traction with a reducer that positions it as one of the most capable pickups on the market, in terms of off-road driving.
The maximum Jeep Gladiator towing capacity is 7,650 pounds when properly equipped. Of course, the actual towing capacity depends on different factors, such as the trim level, the equipment you select, road conditions, altitude, among others.