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When it comes time to purchase a new truck, there are several cab options you must consider. Knowing the differences will help you choose a functional vehicle that you love to drive. So, here are some of the significant differences between these two great truck models.
Main Differences Between Crew Cab vs Extended Cab
The Main Differences Between Crew Cab and Extended Cab are:
- Crew cab and extended cabs both cost more, whereas the crew cab is the more expensive option.
- Both add a backseat, whereas the crew cab gives front and rear passengers more space.
- An extended cab may or may not add rear doors, whereas a crew cab truck always has four full-sized doors.
- The resale value of crew cab vehicles is significantly higher than a traditional truck cab.
What is a Crew Cab vs Extended Cab?
As if there isn’t enough to think about when buying a new truck, there are several cab configurations you need to consider. Knowing the differences between them makes choosing your next car a little easier.
Regular cab trucks were the first made in the United States. However, they are the least popular today. A regular cab means there is just a single front row of seats and two doors. These vehicles have little to no interior luggage space.
Extended cab trucks give you a bit more room without adding a complete row of seats or full-size rear doors. Instead, most makers outfit them with suicide doors that open the opposite direction of the front doors. Extended cabs are a bit longer, giving you room to store valuables and smaller items in the cab.
Most extended cabs have additional seating. They usually have jump seats that fold down or a thin bench seat in the back. Neither is comfortable to sit on for long periods, though. So, you may want to reconsider buying the extended cab if you go on frequent road trips with your family.
Crew cab trucks, on the other hand, are roomier. They include a full-sized back seat and two doors so you can quickly get in and out of the vehicle and load and unload things. When it comes to pricing, crew cabs are generally the most costly. Yet, they are also some of the most comfortable and feature-rich trucks on the market.
In addition to these three options, automakers Toyota (Double Cab), Dodge (Quad Cab), and others also offer a cab setup that is a cross between the extended and crew cabs.
It provides four full seats, yet there is a bit less rear passenger legroom. However, the space you lose in the interior compartment you gain in the truck bed, making it an excellent option for business and personal use.
Some manufacturers no longer use the extended cab name. Instead, Ford calls it the SuperCab, Dodge calls it a QuadCab, and Toyota calls it an Access Cab. Chevrolet/GMC has a model it calls an ‘extended cab,’ but after 2014, the company replaced the doors that used to open the opposite direction with doors that open the same direction as the front.
History of Crew Cab vs Extended Cab Trucks
The history of pickup trucks is fascinating and a bit different than most people assume. Cars are a means of transportation. Trucks, however, were made specifically for utility by farmers, construction workers, and delivery drivers. Few people owned more than one vehicle and trucks did not have enough seats for most families. So, those who owned a truck usually had a family car as well and not many families could afford two vehicles.
It wasn’t long before vehicle manufacturers realized the value in creating trucks with larger interior compartments that could comfortably hold more passengers. However, it took a bit longer for the strange-looking cars to gain popularity with buyers.
The First Crew Cab
It was not until International Harvester made the 1957 Travellete that motorists had a glimpse of a truck with a backseat. The Travelette had two doors in the front, one in the back, and a full-sized pickup bed.
The additional space meant a six-man crew could ride to a job site in one vehicle. However, automotive industry competitors took a little longer to adopt the new truck model. Dodge was the next manufacturer to offer the crew cab option in 1963, followed by Ford in 1965. GMC and sister company Chevrolet was the last to add a crew cab to their lineups.
Even after International Harvester and other automakers’ marketing attempts over the years, crew cabs’ popularity did not explode until much later, and that might be thanks in part to the first extended cab.
The Debut of the Extended Cab Pickup
The first extended cab pickup truck was made in 1973 by Dodge. Dodge’s Club Cab had a little extra room, just enough for folding jump seats on either side, behind the driver and passenger side seats.
At the time, Dodge marketed it as a solution for people who want to transport things they don’t want to be exposed to the elements. The additional seats were only added because space was there.
However, those first extended cab pickups opened the doors for a much broader class of automobile owners. The extended cab was less impractical, and it allowed consumers to ease into driving a truck full-time.
Owning an Extended Cab vs Crew Cab
Like any vehicle, no matter what pickup you choose, there will be advantages and disadvantages. The problem is until you own a particular truck, you are unaware of its limitations. So, here are a few things to consider before you sign for your next Dodge Ram 1500 Big Horn Crew Cab or your Toyota Tacoma Access Cab.
Extended cab trucks almost always come with a standard bed, while Crew Cabs usually have an option for a shortened bed that makes the overall length similar to a standard or extended truck. Due to the crew cab coming with a shorter bed standard, opting for the longer bed will add to the vehicle’s final price.
However, crew cabs give you more interior room, which is valuable if you take frequent trips. One thing you do need to look at, though, is the seating configuration. In some extended cabs, the cargo area contains more useable space since you lack full-sized seats.
A crew cab is always going to give you more space than an extended or double cab. Instead of having a tight spot to squeeze someone in, you have another entire row of seats that comfortably fits two to three people in a pinch. If you are a tall individual, the extra space means you can enjoy more legroom in the driver seat while not crushing your rear passengers.
It may come as a surprise, but there is not a huge difference in the gas mileage you get from an extended cab vs. a crew cab. That is partly due to the shorter bed on most crew cabs. The longer bed might reduce the crew cab’s MPG slightly. So, if you plan to get an extended bed, you may want to look into the gas mileage difference further.
Handling does not change much between the extended cab and the crew cab unless you choose the longer truck bed. Due to the longer cab, an extended bed will stick out in most parking spaces, and finding a spot where you fit can also be a challenge.
When it comes to flexibility and functionality, the crew cab is the clear winner. It is super versatile, and most modern models offer more comfort than similar year model cars. They also give you more interior cargo room and a second full-size set of doors that make it easier to retrieve items from your vehicle.
Another aspect to consider is that you do not have to get out of the vehicle and open the rear passenger door. Now, if you do not have frequent passengers, that might not be an issue for you. However, for families with small children, having to get out of the car to open the door each time you drop someone off is pretty irritating.
The only disadvantage in terms of using your vehicle for utility or pleasure is the fact that most crew cabs lack an extended bed, but that is simple to overcome if you need it. Just order one with the longer bed.
In almost every area, crew cabs outperform. However, that all comes with a higher purchase price. On average, you can expect to spend around $10,000 more for your crew cab, and that is with the smaller standard bed.
If you add the extended bed, you are looking at another $1,000 to $1,500 for just an extra foot of bed length. For example, adding the 6 ½-footbed to the Ford F150 is $1,300 more than the standard option, and it is nearly $3,500 more than an extended or ‘SuperCab’ with the 8-foot bed.
Selling your crew cab is a lot easier because it appeals to a broader audience. Plus, people are willing to spend more money on a vehicle that comfortably fits their entire family. You can also expect to recuperate more of our initial investment when you opt for a crew cab.
If you are trying to choose between a crew cab and an extended cab, there are a few other things you may want to consider. Take a look at these frequently asked questions to learn more.
Answer: When pickup trucks were first sold, they only came with a regular cab, which usually just had one bench seat. If you’ve ridden in a single cab truck, you know how uncomfortable they can be, especially with three passengers.
As people started using the utility vehicles as everyday drivers, manufacturers started offering a larger selection of cab configurations, including:
• Regular cab – traditional truck with two doors and two pilot seats or a bench sear.
• Club cab – Dodge trucks with a front and rear seat but no rear doors.
• Extended cab – has a front and back seat and between one and four doors. However, if there are rear doors you often have to open the front door before you are able to use the opposite-opening rear doors.
• Double cab – another name for extended-cab vehicles.
• Crew cab – a four-door vehicle with more front and rear leg, hip, and headroom and four full-sized doors.
• Quad cab – another term for a crew cab.
Answer: Your personal preferences, family, and career all play a part in which truck is the best option for you. Both will give you a front and back seat, but the extended cab truck will not give you a full set of back doors. If you rarely have passengers and just need a bit of extra interior space for transporting items, an extended cab will probably work and could cost you as much as $10,000 less than the larger crew cab.
If you often share your vehicle with co-workers, kids, friends, etc. the crew cab is nice because it adds extra space for the driver and front and rear passengers. The four full-sized doors also make loading and unloading things easier.
Answer: Each automaker has a different name for its largest cab setup. So, here is a quick reference list:
• Ford F-150 – SuperCrew (approx 43.5 inches)
• Dodge – Ram 3500 – Mega Cab (approx. 43.3 inches)
• Toyota – Tundra – Crewmax (approx. 42.3 inches)
• Chevrolet – Silverado 1500 – Crew Cab (approx. 41 inches)
• Dodge – Ram 1500 – Crew Cab (approx. 40.3 inches)
• Nissan – Titan XD CrewMax (approx. 38.5 inches)
Which Is Better: Extended Cab vs. Crew Cab
In almost every situation, the crew cab is a better truck. You will pay more for your crew cab rig, but it is worth it for most consumers. You will be able to utilize your vehicle for short and long trips by yourself or with your friends or family.
There is more interior room for storing valuable items that the weather could otherwise damage. Plus, crew cabs sell faster and for a higher price on the used car market.
Extended cab trucks are a good option for singles and businesses that want to save money but still have interior storage space. If you have a second vehicle and need a truck just for work purposes, it is also a good option.
When choosing one of these two great truck options, the only way that the extended cab is a better choice is if you are a single person who rarely rides with others or strictly uses your truck for work purposes. In that case, the extended cab might be a better choice.