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Ute vs Truck: The Facts

by editor

The type of work vehicle you choose – truck, ute or van – will depend on daily requirements, environments and expectation for recreational use.

No mat ter what your trade or service, vehicle payload and towing will be near the top of your considerations from both a practical and safety point of view. 

Light trucks, in some cases, are as compact and maneuverable as utes and vans, and are specifically engineered to handle heavier payloads than their smaller cousins. A truck with payload to spare can provide extra peace of mind, ensuring compliance with CoR obligations and minimising the risks of potentially overloading your vehicle.

Compar ing di f ferent types of commercial vehicles in the lightduty space, the GCM of a light truck (starting at 8000kg GCM) typically outweighs that of utes or vans, helping to avoid any banana-bend situations arising from overloading the chassis.

While some 4×4 utes claim to be able to tow up to 3500kg, loading any vehicle to its highest tolerance point for extended periods will rapidly wear down parts and componentry while putting additional strain on the engine. And this is all before taking into account the unintended cost of increased fuel use.

A light truck will offer more bang for buck than a ute or van in both cabin layout and that all-important payload capacity.

A dual-cab truck will comfortably cart a larger team without a negative impact on payload, while the extra room in the back will be handy when it comes to storing and finding work tools.

And it’s not all work and no play. With a versatile light truck, you’ll have additional space (and power) needed for the caravan, dirt bikes, the whole family and the dog, camping gear…all without the worry of being overweight and unsafe.

Whole-of-life cost is also something to think about.

Fuel efficiency, truck-specific parts and component commonality and durability, increased vocational productivity and estimated resale value are all factors worth considering before deciding on your next buy.

At the end of the day, the type of work vehicle you choose – truck, ute or van – obviously depends on your daily requirements, environments and expectation for recreational use.

Just be sure to check you can legally, and safely, carry all the tools, equipment, materials and crew on the vehicle you choose.

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