There are several other storage compartments, as well. "Additional storage locations are built into the instrument panel, front and rear door panels, seat backs and even the floor," Benvenuti notes. "In the crew-size cab, two in-floor bins located in the rear foot wells of the crew cab offer storage enough for ten 12-oz. cans... Upper and lower glove boxes provide a total of more than 800 cu. in. of storage."
Optional accessories from Mopar allow the truck to be customized for your particular needs. These include both permanent-mount and sliding storage boxes and a ladder rack.
Electronic devices also promote productivity. "Dodge offers uconnect phone, which uses Bluetooth technology to provide voice-controlled wireless communication between the occupants' compatible mobile phone and the vehicle's onboard receiver. The hands-free option promotes safety, freedom, value and flexibility," Benvenuti points out. In addition, the uconnect navigation system is integrated into the radio and features a 7-in. in-dash screen.
Designed for multi-tasking
If you need to stay in touch with the office while transporting gear and people to/from the jobsite, the Chevrolet Silverado and GMC Sierra pickups offer several options.
"All full-size trucks have Bluetooth connectivity for hands-free calling and other Bluetooth functionality," says Brian Goebel, Chevrolet Communications. In addition, Onstar 8.0 offers advanced features, including turn-by-turn navigation and Destination Download, which automatically downloads requested directions to the navigation system. Available with XM Satellite radio service, NavTraffic delivers real-time traffic advisements through the navigation system.
For transporting gear, GM offers a cargo management system. Three rails that run the length of the box sides and the forward box wall are secured with high-strength anchors and incorporate upper and lower tracks. "Cargo management system rails can support ladder carriers, bed dividers/extenders, mounted toolboxes of different sizes, etc.," says Goebel.
Four adjustable tie-down brackets are included with each system, and can be located anywhere on the tracks. Each is rated for a load point of 500 lbs.
A group of specific accessory products is designed to integrate into the cargo management system. The rails enable use of an overhead utility rack rated at a 500-lb. loading capacity; a sliding diamond plate toolbox; sliding bed divider; and diamond plate side storage boxes. These accessories use either the upper or lower rails, allowing numerous combinations that can easily fit together or bypass one another as they slide along the rails. The toolboxes use a code-able lock, enabling the vehicle key to be used for locking and unlocking these accessories.
GM also places an emphasis on storage with its lockable under seat storage and a large-capacity, double glove box integrated into the instrument panel.
A simple solution
While some desire a truck laden with productivity-enhancing features, others want just a basic truck minus the expensive options. Many truck manufacturers have responded with work truck packages.
While Toyota offers a Platinum Package with such features as a navigation system and ventilated leather seats, it has also become the latest manufacturer to offer a Work Truck Package. The package is designed to deliver only the features commercial truck buyers need to get the job done, and is priced accordingly.
On the outside, black bumpers and grille surround will replace chrome. Power mirrors are replaced by manual outside rearview mirrors.
Inside, the truck features washable vinyl bench seats and rubber floors. Several standard personal use features have been replaced or removed. The package also excludes cruise control and the remote keyless entry, although separate Work Truck packages will be offered with these features.