Choosing the perfect rig, Full-size vs. mid-size trucks

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Monoman2345

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Hi all! I am new to the forum, thank you for having me.

I am hoping for the help all of you experts, especially those who have used multiple different vehicles for overlanding, in picking my next overlanding rig, one that will go for 10-20 years this time.

I currently drive a 2021 Tacoma SR 4x4 V6, which is on a lease until the end of the year. I'm located in Colorado and very lucky that I live right next to work, so other than moving equipment for work once in a blue moon this truck has purely been my weekend shuttle and overlanding rig. I am shocked at how much this base Tacoma can handle with what's thrown at it.

However, it's Colorado, it's easy to find that limit on some trails. I really want a rear locker, and other off road features other trims have so I don't have to run to aftermarket as fast. My original plan was to buy this at the end of the lease, but with the market, I have multiple dealerships offering me a few thousand post-payoff to trade in my lease Tacoma.

I've test drove a bunch of trucks, and the two options that stand out to me based on price and quality, is either sticking with a Tacoma, or a Ram 1500.

A Toyota dealership is willing to get me the new Tacoma SR5 Trail Edition, rear locker, light lift, better rims and tires, etc.

A Ram dealership is willing to order me a Ram 1500 Tradesman, V8 non-e-torque with the Off Road Package. Rear locker, light lift, better rims and tires, etc.

Shockingly, Ram is offering me way more for the Tacoma than the Toyota dealerships will, so my monthly payment is nearly the same. This is where my questions come in, what do you think the better overlander is? Who do you think is the better option for at least 10 years of abuse? The driving performance, extra power, better braking, suspension and payload of the Ram make it feel like an obvious choice, but I am nervous about losing the Toyota reliability, and I would hate if the Tacoma could fit on most trails and the Ram couldn't.

Anyone overland both a mid-size and full-size truck, and able to help me make stupid decisions?!
 
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Roam Bearded

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Ram fella here and I'll chime in to say that while some trails are a bit tight, if you're not worried about pinstriping the Ram is very capable on the trails. I prefer the full-size for the comfort, space and payload, a factor to consider depending on how you intend to build yours out. All the bits and bops add weight pretty quickly.
I've had my Ram for 6 years without much issue, bought used with 40K on it and just ticked past 110k. Had a preventative maintenance inspection done recently and no issues were found. I have total confidence this truck will serve us well for quite some time. As with any vehicle, if you take care of it, it'll take care of you.
We all know the Taco's are reliable as well, sometimes it does come down to personal preference and what cockpit feels good to you.
 

North American Sojourner

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Ram fella here and I'll chime in to say that while some trails are a bit tight, if you're not worried about pinstriping the Ram is very capable on the trails. I prefer the full-size for the comfort, space and payload, a factor to consider depending on how you intend to build yours out. All the bits and bops add weight pretty quickly.
I've had my Ram for 6 years without much issue, bought used with 40K on it and just ticked past 110k. Had a preventative maintenance inspection done recently and no issues were found. I have total confidence this truck will serve us well for quite some time. As with any vehicle, if you take care of it, it'll take care of you.
We all know the Taco's are reliable as well, sometimes it does come down to personal preference and what cockpit feels good to you.
Yeah this fellow is very correct. I'm a former Tacoma guy and now have a F250. I'm old as the roads I drive so the idea of me continuing to cling to cliffs is out of the question. This F250 just won't cut it. If you're a young fellow and want to do the heavy rock crawling, high altitude mountain routes, stay Toyota. Ram or other manufacture for comfort and towing capability.
Zim
 
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smritte

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I like my full size Cruiser for the comfort. I also like my 19 Tacoma for the size. I started with small 77 Datsun (converted to 4wd), through several Toyota PU's, Older Cherokee's to newer small Cherokees, several Jeeps, a full size Chevy truck, a couple of S-10s and a several Jeep's (CJ-Wrangler).

From then till now I find mid size to full size is the most comfy. When I'm out with my friends, my 96 FJ80 is almost the smallest vehicle in the group. Some of the guys struggle with the vehicle size in the areas we go (width and length) but with a little finesse and spotting, they get through ok.

As others have said, where do you want to drive? I do miss some of the trails I did years ago with my Jeeps. What I have now is too big. On the other hand I do like the comfort and carrying capacity (more junk) of my bigger vehicles.

EDIT: FYI, if you take care of them, Toyota trucks will out live you.
 
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