Base pickup prices vary widely

DETROIT - Shoppers looking at 2002 Chevrolet and Ford pickups will have to make up their minds on the basis of personal preference and standard equipment, as marketing strategies have resulted in significant differences in base prices.

A Chevrolet S10 compact, for example, starts at $14,327, while a Ford Ranger can be purchased for as little as $12,725. But there are 28 Ranger models in keeping with Ford's new pricing strategy; there are just seven S10 choices.

Moving up to full-sized pickups, the advantage shifts.

The Chevy Silverado 1500 regular cab starts at $18,238 compared with $18,795 for the Ford regular cab F-150. Chevrolet has the edge despite its $350 price hike.

All prices in this story include the destination charge.

On sport-utilities, the pendulum swings back to Ford. An Explorer four-door with two-wheel drive is $24,800; a Chevrolet TrailBlazer is $25,905.

Both Ford and GM are offering various sales incentives on trucks and sport-utilities, including 0 percent financing through Oct. 31.

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