9 min read
10 Aug

Navigating the diverse and challenging Nigerian terrains demands a vehicle that can withstand the harshest conditions while delivering unwavering performance. As one of the largest economies in Africa, Nigeria is home to bustling cities, vast agricultural landscapes, and rugged off-road paths. 

This article ventures into the world of pickup trucks, highlighting the strongest and most capable models suitable for conquering Nigerian roads with relative ease. These robust vehicles have earned their reputation for durability, power, and versatility, making them an ideal choice for both urban adventurers and rural explorers. 

Seeking a reliable workhorse for commercial purposes or a dependable vehicle for off-road adventures? These clench-fist-strong pickup trucks got engineered to tackle the challenges presented by Nigerian roads, ensuring you can navigate any terrain confidently. 

Related Reading: The 10 Most Reliable And Capable Used Cars For Nigerian Roads

10. Strongest Pickup Trucks: 2012 Chevrolet Silverado

  • JD Power Reliability Score: 86/100
  • Towing Capacity: 6,000 LBS
2012_Chevrolet_Silverado_2500_--_NHTSA via Wikimedia.

For the 2012 model year, US News and World Report ranked the Silverado number 1 in its full-size pickup truck rankings. One satisfied owner told Vehicle History that the 2012 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 posed zero mechanical issues after 85,000 miles and counting. 

That's an impressive record for an American-made full-size pickup, but there are more reasons why the truck is perfect for Nigerian roads. 

Firstly, the Silverado has a fully boxed frame made of high-strength steel, providing a solid foundation for the rest of the vehicle. This helps to absorb impacts and resist bending or twisting, making the truck more durable and less prone to damage. 

Secondly, the 2012 Silverado is available with a range of powerful engine options, including a 6.2-liter V8 with up to 403 horsepower and 417 lb-ft of torque. This output is plenty of power to handle tough jobs and challenging driving conditions. 

Thirdly, the Silverado uses a suspension system designed to handle heavy loads and rough terrain. It includes heavy-duty shocks, springs, and stabilizer bars, as well as a range of available upgrades like the Z71 Off-Road package. 

Fourthly, the Chevy Silverado is built with durable components throughout, including a heavy-duty transmission, axles, and brakes. This helps ensure the truck can withstand the wear and tear of heavy use typical of Nigerian living conditions over time. 

Lastly, Chevrolet is known for building high-quality vehicles, and the Silverado is no exception. The attention to detail and quality craftsmanship that goes into the design and construction heralds its durability and reliability more than many of its competitors. 

9. Strongest Pickups: 2015 Toyota Tacoma

  • JD Power Reliability Score: 5.0/5.0
  • Towing Capacity: 6,500 LBS
2015_Toyota_Tacoma_Double_Cab_Long_Bed,_Front_Right  via Wikimedia.

It’s not for nothing that Tacoma leads the midsize pickup segment by market sales, despite Ford dominating the truck market for consecutive years. 

For example, Tacoma moved an impressive 237,323 units in 2022 in America, widening the market gap far ahead of Ford's Range,r which sold 57,005 units, and GM's Colorado and Canyon, which moved 117,016 in to-to. 

For the 2015 model year, the Toyota Tacoma earned a perfect 5 out of 5 reliability score by JD Power, proving it is one of the most dependable pickup trucks money can buy. A Nigerian looking for a durable pickup truck might choose the 2015 Toyota Tacoma for many reasons:

Firstly, Toyota Tacoma's reputation for reliability and durability is well known. It is built to Toyota's high standards of quality, and its drivetrain, suspension, and chassis components got designed to withstand heavy use and tough conditions. 

Secondly, Tacoma gets motivation from powerful and efficient engines that deliver impressive performance. The 2015 Tacoma is available with a 2.7-liter four-cylinder engine or a 4.0-liter V6 engine, both of which deliver strong acceleration and towing capability. 

Thirdly, the Tacoma is a good friend of the off-roads, thanks to its high ground clearance, rugged suspension system, and available four-wheel drive that makes it capable of tackling tough terrain and challenging driving conditions.

Fourthly, Tacoma tends to have high resale value, an important consideration for Nigerian auto shoppers. A truck that holds its value well over time is considered a smart investment not only in Nigeria but anywhere in the world. 

Finally, Toyota has a strong presence in Nigeria and has a network of dealerships and service centers throughout the country. This makes it easier for owners to get their trucks serviced and maintained. That’s the edge Toyota products has over other brands in the country, which is important for ensuring a vehicle’s long-term durability and reliability. 

8. Strongest Pickups: 2020 Ford Ranger

  • JD Power Reliability Score: 88/100
  • Towing Capacity: 7,500 LBS
2020_Ford_Ranger_Raptor_Front Vauxford via Wikimedia.

The 2020 Ford Ranger is a midsize pickup truck well-suited for harsh environments for several reasons. Here are some arguments to support this claim: 

FirstlyThe Ford Ranger has impressive off-road capabilities, exemplified by its high-strength steel frame and independent front suspension that provide better control and stability on rugged terrain. 

Additionally, the Ranger features a Terrain Management System that allows the driver to choose from four modes (Normal, Grass/Gravel/Snow, Mud/Ruts, and Sand) depending on the terrain they are driving on. 

Secondly, the Ranger is built tough and durable, with features like a rugged steel bumper, skid plates, and a reinforced undercarriage reinstating its lordship over challenging road conditions. These features can help protect the vehicle from damage when driving on rough terrain or in harsh environments. 

Thirdly, the 2020 Ford Ranger’s turbocharged 2.3-liter four-cylinder engine delivers 270 horsepower and 310 lb-ft of torque, which is ample power and torque for staying in command while plowing through harsh environments like steep inclines or deep mud. 

Fourthly, the Ranger's towing capacity and handling are commendable. It boasts a maximum towing capacity of up to 7,500 pounds and a maximum payload capacity of up to 1,860 pounds. This makes it suitable for hauling heavy loads in harsh environments, such as construction sites or off-road trails.

Lastly, the 2020 Ranger comes equipped with advanced technology features designed to help drivers stay safe and connected while driving in harsh environments. For example, there’s the available Blind Spot Information System (BLIS) with Trailer Coverage that can help drivers monitor blind spots while towing a trailer. 

There’s also the available SYNC 3 infotainment system that provides access to navigation, music, and other features through an intuitive touchscreen interface. 

7. Strongest Pickup Trucks: 2016 Toyota Hilux

  • C&H Reliability Score: 8.5/10 (5-STAR Euro NCAP Rating) Towing Capacity: 7,700 LBS The 2016 
2016_Toyota_HiLux_Invincible_D-4D_4WD_2.4_Front Vauxford via Wikimedia.

Toyota Hilux is one of the most dependable and capable pickup trucks forged for the most difficult, inhospitable environments. The 2016 Hilux owes its toughness and durability to several factors:

Firstly, the Hilux uses a highly robust and reliable drivetrain that can withstand heavy use and abuse. The Hilux is equipped with a range of powerful diesel and petrol engines to deliver impressive torque and horsepower, making it suitable for a range of applications and terrains. 

Secondly, the Hilux has a rugged chassis and suspension system that can handle heavy loads and rough terrain. The truck is designed as a workhorse, with its frame and suspension engineered to withstand the stresses of heavy use. 

Thirdly, the Hilux has a reputation for reliability and durability backed up by Toyota's rigorous quality control standards. Toyota has a long history of producing dependable and long-lasting vehicles, and the Hilux is no exception. 

Finally, the Hilux has been tested and proven in some of the harshest environments in the world, including the Australian Outback, the African Savannah, and the deserts of the Middle East. Its toughness and durability have made it a favorite among farmers, miners, and adventurers. 

One more thing before we move on. If you can get your hands on a 1988 Toyota Hilux, don't hesitate. The ’88 Hilux is literally unkillable, having survived some of the worst willful abuses just to test its limits. 

6. Strongest Pickup Trucks: 2016 Dodge Ram Power Wagon

  • JD Power Reliability Score: 4.0/5.0
  • Towing Capacity: 9,790 LBS
2016 Dodge_Ram_Power_Wagon aristmac via Wikipedia.

The 2016 Dodge Ram Power Wagon is widely regarded as one of the toughest pickup trucks in the world due to its impressive off-road capabilities and heavy-duty construction. You can expect nothing less from an heir of the Power Wagons of 1945, originally meant for military applications. So, why is the modern Ram on this list? 

Firstly, the 2016 Dodge Power Wagon rocks a powerful 6.4-liter Hemi V8 engine that delivers 410 horsepower and 429 lb-ft of torque. This gives the Power Wagon enough power and torque to tackle even the toughest off-road terrain and heavy-duty hauling tasks. 

Secondly, the Power Wagon has a robust suspension system for extreme off-road conditions. The suspension includes Bilstein shocks, front and rear locking differentials, and an electronic disconnecting front sway bar. This allows the Power Wagon to crawl over rocks, tackle steep inclines, and navigate deep mud and water. 

Thirdly, the Power Wagon has a heavy-duty build that includes a reinforced frame, axles, and drivetrain components, giving the truck immense strength to support heavy loads and endure the rigors of off-road use, and making it one of the most suitable vehicles for motoring conditions like Nigeria’s toughest terrains. 

Finally, the Power Wagon comes equipped with several features that enhance its off-road capabilities, including skid plates, tow hooks, hill descent control, and a winch. These features make the Power Wagon a favorite among off-road enthusiasts and those who need a tough and capable pickup truck for work or play. 

5. Strongest Pickups: 2018 Toyota Tundra

  • JD Power Reliability Score: 4.5/05
  • Towing Capacity: 10,200 LBS
2018_Toyota_Tundra_CrewMax Bull-Doser via Wikimedia.

Firstly, the Tundra uses a strong, durable frame that can handle heavy loads and difficult terrain. The frame is of high-strength steel, which helps to absorb and distribute the forces encountered during heavy-duty use. 

Secondly, the 2018 Tundra is equipped with a powerful and reliable engine that delivers high levels of torque and horsepower. The Tundra is available with two engine options, including an optional 5.7-liter V8 engine that produces up to 381 horsepower and 401 lb-ft of torque. 

Thirdly, the Tundra uses a robust suspension system ensuring a smooth ride even when carrying heavy loads. The suspension’s engineering can handle the stresses of off-road use and is equipped with heavy-duty shock absorbers and stabilizer bars. 

Finally, the Tundra got built to Toyota's high standards of quality and reliability. Toyota enjoys a reputation for producing dependable, long-lasting vehicles, and the Tundra is no exception. The 2018 Tundra’s dependability is backed by Toyota's comprehensive warranty and service plans. 

Related Reading: 16 Toughest Pickup Trucks Ever Built On Earth (8 Every Nigerian Man Should Have)

4. Strongest Pickup Trucks: 2016 Ram 1500

  • JD Power Reliability Score: 4.0/5.0
  • Towing Capacity: 10,700 LBS
2016 Dodge_Ram_1500_Laramie_V6_EcoDiesel RL GNZLZ via Wikimedia.

The 2016 Ram 1500 got built with a high-strength steel frame that provides a strong and durable foundation for the truck. The frame is more rigid and twist resistant, improving the truck's stability and road manners. 

Secondly, the Ram 1500 benefits from a range of powerful and efficient engines, including the 5.7-liter HEMI V8 engine that delivers up to 395 horsepower and 410 lb-ft of torque. These engines support impressive towing and hauling capabilities while maintaining fuel efficiency. 

Thirdly, the Ram 1500 boasts a handful of advanced features that promotes strength and durability. They include a robust suspension system, an electronic locking rear differential, and available air suspension. 

These features contribute to the truck's performance, handling, and durability in various driving conditions and would come in pretty handy in Nigeria’s numerous uneven roads. 

Finally, the Ram 1500 wears a highly durable and rugged exterior designed to withstand heavy use and tough weather conditions. The body panels and bed are of high-strength materials, including aluminum and composite, which reduces weight while increasing strength. 

3. Strongest Pickup Trucks: 2020 Ford F-150

  • JD Power Reliability Score: 86/100
  • Towing Capacity: 13,000 LBS
2020_Ford_F-150_XLT_SuperCrew_4x4_with_FX4_Off-Road_&_Chrome_Packages,_front_left MercurySable99 via Wikimedia.

The F-150’s market dominance and impressive reliability scores aren’t the only reasons it’s on this list. 

Firstly, the 2020 Ford F-150 owes its build quality to a high-strength, military-grade aluminum-alloy body that reduces weight while increasing strength. This makes the truck more durable, resistant to dents and scratches, and capable of withstanding heavy use. 

Secondly, the 2020 F-150 relies on a range of powerful and efficient engines, including the 3.5-liter EcoBoost V6 mill producing up to 375 horsepower and 470 lb-ft of torque. The engines support impressive towing and hauling capabilities while maintaining fuel efficiency. 

Thirdly, the F-150 has a strong and durable frame made of high-strength steel that can handle heavy loads and tough terrain. The frame is optimized for rigidity and resistance to twisting, which improves the truck's stability and handling. 

Fourthly, the F-150 features several advanced features that enhance its strength and durability, including a fully boxed high-strength steel frame, a robust suspension system, and an electronic locking rear differential. These features help to improve the truck's performance, handling, and durability in various driving conditions, including off-road. 

Finally, the F-150 is backed by Ford's rigorous quality control standards and testing, ensuring the truck is built to last and can withstand heavy use. Say what you may about American cars, but the F-150 has led the pickup market ahead of the ubiquitous Toyota for consecutive years

These factors make the 2020 Ford F-150 a strong and durable pickup truck capable of handling wide-ranging tasks and working conditions. 

2. Strongest Pickup Trucks: 2020 GMC Sierra 1500

  • JD Power Reliability Score: 86/100
  • Towing Capacity: 12,100 LBS

According to Vehicle History, the year 2020 was “a good year for the GMC Sierra 1500” because it offered an impressive blend of luxury and truck-like capabilities. 

Consumer Reports noted that the parent company GM improved the truck for that model year, resulting in an updated powertrain and increased towing and payload capacities, among other updates. Here are some other reasons why the Sierra 1500 is on this list: 

Firstly, the Sierra 1500 wraps around a high-strength steel frame that provides a solid foundation for the rest of the vehicle, making the full-size truck less prone to damage from impacts and other forms of wear and tear. 

Secondly, the 2020 Sierra 1500 received propulsion from powerful engine options, including a 6.2-liter V8 engine capable of 420 horsepower and 460 lb-ft of torque. Again, that’s plenty of power to tow and haul heavy loads. 

Speaking of towing and hauling, the 2021 GMC Sierra 1500 has up to 12,100 lbs maximum towing capacity and a maximum payload capacity of up to 2,240 pounds. Those are impressive numbers to earn the confidence of drivers that use their trucks for towing and other heavy-duty jobs. 

Thirdly, the Sierra 1500 has a satisfying list of tech bells and whistles that make driving a truck more fun than it already is. It has high-techie features like a 15-inch heads-up display, a rearview camera mirror, and a multi-color 8-inch touchscreen display. 

Lastly, the Sierra 1500 also fields modern safety features that promote driver's and passengers safety in the event of an accident. These include safety systems like forward collision warning, lane departure warning, and automatic emergency braking. 

1. The Strongest Pickup Trucks: 2021 Ram 2500

  • JD Power Reliability Score: 86/100
  • Towing Capacity: 19,680 LBS

The 2021 Ram 2500 is a tough truck built to handle heavy-duty jobs and challenging driving conditions. JD Power blessed it with the no.3 position in its overall rankings for large heavy-duty pickup trucks, preceded by the GMC Sierra 2500HD and the Chevrolet Silverado 2500 HD. 

The Ram 2500 uses a high-strength steel frame and a reinforced undercarriage primed to take on heavy loads and rugged terrain. The truck's suspension system is just as capable of shouldering heavy loads and absorbing impacts. 

Secondly, the 2021 Ram 2500 hit the market with a range of powerful engine options, including a 6.7-liter Cummins turbodiesel engine that could crank out 1,075 lb-ft of torque. That’s power aplenty for towing and hauling heavy loads, making the Ram 2500 a great choice for work, play, or rough play. 

Thirdly, the 2021 Ram 2500 has a towing capacity of up to 19,680 pounds and a maximum payload capacity of up to 4,010 pounds. Those are impressive figures that make this Ram pickup an excellent partner for towing trailers, boats, and other heavy stuff. 

Fourthly, the 2021 Ram 2500 came with advanced technology features that make driving more fun and comfortable. These include features like a 12-inch touchscreen display, wireless smartphone charging, and a premium sound system. 

Lastly, the Ram 2500 also had several important safety features that help protect drivers and passengers in an accident. It had features like adaptive cruise control, blind-spot monitoring, and forward collision warning. 

The Best Pickup Trucks Most Suitable For Nigerian Roads

2021_RAM_2500_Laramie_27 via WhichCar.

Whether you're a professional needing a dependable work partner or an adventure enthusiast yearning to explore the vast beauty of Nigeria, these strong pickup trucks are poised to deliver an unparalleled driving experience. You’re invited to embrace the power, durability, and versatility and set off on your Nigerian road journey with unwavering confidence.

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