Workhorse watch: Here's 10 of the best utes you can buy for $40,000
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The idea of buying a double-cab ute for $40,000 is an interesting one. On one hand, you have the handful of capable brand new utes priced in that window, juxtaposed with flagship models with a few kilometres on the clock and lots of toys-per-buck.
There's also two-wheel drive versus four-wheel drive to consider, and the meaty premium that the latter often comes with. Things can get complicated quite quickly, which is why we thought we'd put together our list of 10 New Zealand picks currently listed for sale on DRIVEN ... with a few cheaper options thrown into the mix for good measure.
Let's start with the Holden Colorado. In the wake of Holden's demise, sharp deals on Colorados nationwide should be expected.
They might not have the cache of a Ranger or Hilux, but the Colorado does have a few key strengths. Its 500Nm 2.8-litre powertrain is among the gutsiest in class, it drives well, and its infotainment is excellent, too.
For just over $40,000 you can get a brand new 4WD LT, but we reckon this low-kms (8,000km) high-spec LTZ 4WD in the Waikato is a better deal. Click here to check it out.
At this price point, a common fork in the road is whether to get a highly specified 2WD or a low-spec 4WD. This throw-the-kitchen-sink-at-it Mazda BT-50G GSX is definitely the former.
The BT-50 is often cited as one of the most underrated utes in class. While its sleek styling has its doubters, you can't ignore that it's a Ford Ranger underneath. Albeit with less additional development over the years.
Listed in Auckland, it comes with enormous 22-inch wheels, full leather, satnav, and more.
And, priced at $33,275, it's one of the cheapest ways to get behind the wheel of a current-gen ute powered by Ford's popular 3.2-litre five-cylinder turbo-diesel. Click here to check it out.
You can't do a ute list and not include a Toyota Hilux. And, in this case, we're going to feature two of them.
The first is a bare bones, oddly endearing Workmate base model. The 2.7-litre Workmate got a big upgrade last year to include Toyota's new wave of safety tech. That means that this cheapo ute comes with adaptive cruise control, lane-centering, and more.
This one is an ex-demo with just 253km on the clock, and is listed in Auckland priced at $27,490. Click here to check it out.
As the ute market tells us, there's huge interest in models packed with even more toys. So, at $39,950, here's a low-km (67,614km) four-wheel drive SR5.
While it's no longer the runaway best seller in class, the Hilux is still an exceptional workhorse and a handy tool off-road. The SR5 chucks in things like leather highlights, a digital cluster, alloys, satnav, and more.
Note that this one, because it's from 2016, does not come with the standard radar cruise and lane centering of the above Workmate. But, it is loaded to the brim with other extras like a tow bar, bed liner, and a hard cover with grab handles. Click here to check it out.
Apart from being totally bulletproof, the Isuzu D-Max has always been known for its good resale value and subsequent difficulty to find cheap.
But, we found one.
Granted that, yes, it's not a four-wheel drive model. But this $26,990, 44,700km LS is still a lot of ute for the money. Along with that old-school 3.0-litre diesel, this example comes with a canopy, the updated touch-screen, and more. Click here to check it out.
On the 'high spec two-wheel drive' scale, this might take the cake.
Nissan's 2019 '450 Edition' Navara models (the number designating the torque figures of its 2.3-litre twin-turbo engine) added some neat orange highlights, reworked leather seats, and more. And because they're based on the flagship ST-X, they come with features like heated seats, a 360-degree camera, and Apple CarPlay/Android Auto.
This one is a smidge over budget at $41,990. But that's down from an original price of $56,590. Click here to check it out.
Here's the a wildcard for you; a brand new Mitsubishi Triton. And, it isn't even a base-spec warrior ... it's the mid-spec GLX-R.
Now, you can get the four-wheel drive version of the GLX-R for $39,990, but they're much more sought after meaning new examples are a little harder to find. Those chasing value can do worse than this $33,990 two-wheel drive variant.
It comes with a raft of the model's 2019 updates (including the much improved styling, the better steering wheel, and the six-speed manual as opposed to the five-speed in older models). And, listed in Auckland, it's brand new with only delivery kilometres on the clock and a unique colour. Click here to check it out.
That said, if you need four-wheel drive, then this slightly broken in 2019 GLX-R is a happy alternative.
Along with the aforementioned changes and two extra driven wheels, this example is an automatic as opposed to being a manual. That means its $38,800 price is around $4000 under sticker.
The catch? It has almost 5000km on the clock. Still, it's excellent value for a proven, near-new ute. Click here to check it out.
And last but not least are a pair of similar-but-different Ford Rangers.
The first is a version of the ever popular mid-spec XLT. This is arguably the best-value Ranger sub-model in the line-up, with its dressed-up aesthetics, semi-digital cluster, sign recognition, Sync system, and more.
Despite being four years old, this two-wheel drive example for sale in Grey Lynn has only covered 55,000km. Not bad for $34,990. Click here to check it out.
Of course, there are people who can't help but pull the trigger on the 'Foreman's delight' Ford Ranger Wildtrak; the flagship model in the range not including the adventurous Ranger Raptor.
It's a manual, which is somewhat rare among Wildtraks here. Leather appointments inside, two-tone black and orange seats, and a roller bed cover are among the key fruit.
The catch is that it has 92,000km on the clock. But, that still makes it one of the few current-generation Ranger Wildtracks under $40,000 with less than six figures on the odometer. Click here to check it out.
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