Utes under $50k
If you find yourself shopping in the sub $50k range for a new ute, you’re in luck. The segment is booming at the moment, with dual-cab utes like the Toyota Hilux and Ford Ranger regularly swapping blows on the sales charts for the title of best-selling vehicle of the month. Speaking of which, there are variants of those two titans that can be found for less than $50,000, while further offerings from Mitsubishi, Nissan, Holden, Isuzu and Mazda round out our segment.
While you may be limited in terms of creature comforts on some models, you can afford yourself a lot of choice for $50,000 ute, with multiple body styles, multiple engines and transmissions available from some key brands.
Many Australians find it hard to go past the well-known and well-tested Toyota Hilux, as it is currently one of the country’s most popular cars. Its reliability, affordability and its reputation for its ‘go-anywhere’ ability is second-to-none. It’s number one for a reason.
Talk of the Toyota Hilux and you’ll find a mention of the Ford Ranger isn’t far behind. Designed and tested in Australia, the Ford Ranger is also a best-seller among the Australian public. Renowned for its off-road ability, advanced safety kit and on-road dynamics, the Ranger is a shining example of a ute that can do work and play.
If any ute can purport to behave most like a car, it’s arguably the Volkswagen Amarok that’ll win that claim. Lauded for its car-like manner and sophisticated ride and handling, the Amarok can even hustle some SUVs for on-road dynamics.
Nissan has been steadily improving its Navara ute over the past few years into what is now one of the front-runners of the segment. Combining a powerful turbo-diesel engine and economical fuel use, the Navara is offers good value for its modest spend.
The Isuzu D-Max is a down-to-earth ute that carries and tows well, and in 4WD form can handle hard work off road. Five-year warranty and an affordable price mean this ute will appeal to those looking for value. The solid engine is renowned for its ability to go and go and go and the six-speed gearbox is smooth.
The Holden Colorado is a well-equipped ute with an excellent diesel engine, it carries and tows big loads well, and for a ute it is now quiet to ride in and it steers nicely. Inside, all Colorados have excellent smartphone integration via Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.
The Refreshed Mitsubishi Triton is especially handy about town and presents great value in terms of purchase price, but also fuel efficiency. While lacking the big performance boasts of the Ford Ranger and Volkswagen Amarok, the Triton is a good steer on and off the road and its smaller body makes it easy to manoeuvre.