> My wife is liking the RAM or Ford models and I'm liking to
> keep her happy<grin> I'm also looking for something at least
> 4 years old to keep the costs down.
I'm just wondering about her rationale for liking the Fords and
I don't know a lot about the current Ram (which is too new to fit your
shopping list anyway) and others probably have more experience than I
with this topic in general, but relative to the older HD models I've
always found the GM trucks to be by far the best in terms of on-road
driveability, ESPECIALLY if you're talking 4WD. There might be some
benefit to the others' use of stick axles in their 4x4s in terms of
ultimate durability, but it costs them in on-road behavior.
The GMs also had, as far as I'm concerned, the nicest interiors in the
timeframe you're talking about.
> Are there any special models or engines in the Ford or RAM line
> to stay away from? We do want the Crew Cab features but can
> easily use the short bed option.
The 6-liter Ford/Navistar diesel of a few years back got a really, truly
nasty reputation when it was released, Ford rolled out a pile of fixes
for it, then replaced it with a related 6.4L motor and they're now
rolling out their own in-house-designed diesel. I have friends who tell
me the fixes for the 6L work fine but I don't have any personal
experience on that front.
Aside from that, I think I'd pay more attention to transmission
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