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2021’s Best Pick-Up Truck Wheels Under $2,000

2021’s Best Pick-Up Truck Wheels Under $2,000

The pick-up truck is a staple in the US. Its popularity stems from its unparalleled utility, toughness, and style. These days, the aftermarket world gives you easy access to a variety of truck wheels to suit your build. The article discusses the essentials of choosing a set that’s easy on your budget.

The pick-up truck is a true American workhorse. It is one of the most sought-after vehicles across manufacturers.

The original layout comprised of a two-seat cab with the engine out front and a bed for carrying cargo at the rear. Even with modern features and creature comforts, the design remains distinctly functional.

Navigate your way through the article here:

What Gave the Pick-Up Truck Its Value and Reputation?
Popularity as a Lifestyle Vehicle
The Street Monsters
The Off-Road Beasts
Setting Up Your Pick-up Truck with New Tires and Wheels
Your Pick-up Truck Wheel Options
Editor’s Pick: American Off-Road Wheels A106
Our Takeaway

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What Gave the Pick-Up Truck Its Value and Reputation?

The pick-up truck has won the hearts of the American working class because of its ability to carry goods and equipment to different places. Its size is big enough to be useful yet still compact to fit into smaller streets and garages.

 

As farmers and tradespeople earned more money, it didn’t take long for the pick-up truck to become a personal vehicle for individuals and families.

These people were able to afford better living eventually. But their love and affinity for pick-up trucks stuck around. This opened a new chapter in American automobilia.

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Popularity as a Lifestyle Vehicle

The growing demand for pick-up trucks opened the door to new features that add value to the vehicle. As years went on, more motorists began choosing these vehicles over sedans for their practicality.

Automakers came up with a variety of trims to cater to the different market segments. Base models were still retained for utility but it also meant the product line had pick-up trucks geared more for lifestyle and luxury.

Among the features that proved to be enticing include the 4-wheel-drive systems, power features, two-tone paint, and more chrome trims. Buyers also were granted the chance to choose the cab sizes and bed lengths to suit their needs. These made trucks like the Ford F100 and Chevrolet C10 and K10 popular in the market.

 

There were even pick-ups that were based on muscle cars like the Chevrolet El Camino and Ford Ranchero. They became popular during the golden years of American automobilia.

 

These days, modern pick-up trucks still carry these genes, making them very appealing to enthusiasts. Some are quite happy to drive with factory configurations. However, others take the extra mile in making their pick-up truck very much their own. They start to put in performance modifications that add rush to the driving experience. 

 

Let’s take a look at the two popular ways enthusiasts build their pick-up trucks today, shall we?

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The Street Monsters

Truck owners come with their unique backgrounds and inclinations. There are some of those who are more than happy to drive and flaunt their vehicles on the streets.

Their trucks are built in ways that can make people turn and smile. Some of these vehicles are inspired by off-road vehicles with the kind of modifications put on them.

But what makes them stand out is their spotless appearance, massive lifts, and flashy wheels. They would rather be seen in SEMA and car meets than collecting mud and dirt on the trail.

Here are the things that make the street monsters total standouts:

Power Tunes, Intake and Exhaust Upgrades

Mid-size and full-size pick-up trucks usually pack a considerable amount of horsepower and torque under the hood. But some owners love to include power tunes, and intake and exhaust upgrades in their builds.

These give the vehicle more kick and throttle response. The output gains can earn you bragging rights on the street. More than that, the throaty exhaust notes is sweet, sweet music to an enthusiast's ears. 

Extreme Suspension Lift

Street trucks are built to look aggressive on the road. By adding an extreme suspension lift, the truck can look sporty and tower over other vehicles.

An extra four to six inches worth of lift will also allow you to put on bigger, wider wheels and chunkier tires.

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The Off-Road Beasts

Pick-up trucks are also popular vehicles for off-road adventures. Their tough and rugged build fits the kind of environment adventure-seekers love.

Off-road enthusiasts usually pride themselves on getting to places where no ordinary vehicles can. And they have the right to say that for a good reason. After a day wallowing in the mud, these off-road trucks proudly bear the marks of their conquest.

Sometimes, off-road pick-up trucks also function as a primary space for living while you’re out in the wilderness.

Now, we look at how their rigs are set up. These purposeful builds are designed primarily to take on unforgiving terrains on adventures. The upgrades they have are rather heavy-duty and functional rather than just aesthetically attractive.

Here are the things that define the off-road beasts:

Auxiliary Lighting

The heart of off-roading is driving through unpaved roads for an adventure. Come nighttime, there will be no other light source than the moon and your vehicle.

Adding auxiliary lights will cover a longer and wider area which proves to be very helpful in navigating when you’re out there.

 

Power Tunes, Intake and Exhaust Upgrades

Performance tuning for off-road pick-up trucks is done to improve their capabilities on the trail. Extra torque might just be the push your truck needs to take steep inclines faster.

Aftermarket intake and exhaust upgrades can also add a much-needed power increase to make your truck run well on and off the road.

Bumper and Additional Armor

Given the harsh off-road environment, some enthusiasts choose to add extra protection to their trucks. Aftermarket bumpers and additional armor on the sides become the first line of defense against obstructions.

They owe their durability to heavy gauge steel. However, their construction can also add significant weight to your vehicle.

Recovery Gear

Getting stuck in a rut is no fun at all. Having recovery gear ready can help you get out of that position much easier. Usual accessories include the winch, shovel, ropes, and boards.

Heavy-Duty Suspension Lift

You don’t need to be the tallest pick-up truck around when you’re driving off-road. True enthusiasts would only go for two to three inches of lift using heavy-duty suspension.

That’s just enough to add more ground clearance and allow bigger off-road tires

Anything more than that can already alter the truck’s center of gravity. This can work against you when driving through extremely uneven surfaces. At worst, you can even tip over.

The heavy-duty suspension also comes with a higher load rating which allows it to take in excess weight from the steel bumpers and cargos.  

You will find these attributes essential on your off-road adventure.

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Setting Up Your Pick-up Truck with New Tires and Wheels

Whether you’re going for a street or off-road truck, having a new set of wheels and tires caps off your build. You must understand their construction and purpose before you start shopping for your own set.

Tires

Your choice of tires should be based on how you intend to use your pick-up truck. Knowing their capabilities and differences will help you decide which set gives the best value for money.

If you only drive your vehicle around the city, suburb, or through highways, then might want to consider highway tires. These are usually designed for economy, comfort, and optimum road handling.

Its appearance looks rather refined and clean but makes a practical choice for your vehicle. Also, they generally offer a quiet ride.

Some pick-up trucks already come with all-terrain tires the moment they roll out of the dealership. These are ready to be driven on paved roads and rugged trails.

All-terrain tires provide sufficient traction on different surfaces, making them a popular choice among pick-up truck and SUV owners. However, their rugged tread patterns make them a bit noisy on the road.

 

There are also mud-terrain tires for extreme off-roading. They are made of stronger compounds for protection against puncture and abrasions on the trail. These tires also have aggressive tread patterns for gripping rocks and mud.

While intended for off-road use, these are also popular with show truck builds. The bigger gaps between their tread blocks make them noticeably noisy on the road.

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What are Wheels Made Of?

Perhaps one of the fastest ways to make a pick-up truck build stand out is with new wheels. Your choice reflects the kind of character and capabilities you want your vehicle to be associated with.  

Before you set off looking for the best wheel model to suit your build, you must understand where they are made from. Different applications require different designs and materials.

Common Wheel Materials

Cast alloy wheels are associated with vehicles driven on the streets. They might be appealing because of their sporty designs, light weight, and affordable pricing.

Despite these things, you should rather stay on the road if you choose a set of cast alloy wheels. Its construction is not durable enough to take on the harsh off-road environment over and over again.

It won’t be a pretty sight if you end up with cracked wheels in the middle of nowhere.

Steel wheels are usually the ones preferred by the old school off-roaders. Their minimalist looks aren’t the most elaborate. But one look and you’ll know that they are down for the beating.

These affordable rugged wheels are known to be bulletproof on the trail. They can take on a lot of bumps and bruises having to drive through harsh landscapes. And if ever they get dented, these can be repaired and straightened out.

Because of its construction, steel wheels are also rather heavy. Its weight can tire your arms out during long-distance driving and might yield inefficient fuel consumption. Yet, this added weight is sometimes preferred by seasoned enthusiasts claiming it gives them greater control when on the trail.

These are spartan wheels for the no-nonsense tough truck.

Forged alloy wheels are the wheels of choice for modern pick-up truck owners. They come in a lot of designs, some of which are a nod to the classic off-road steel wheels. The sheer amount of variety allows enthusiasts to pick out from retro-inspired to refreshingly new models.

These wheels are formed by applying extreme heat and pressure on the raw metal. The process makes them durable on the trail minus the extra weight. You can say they got the best of both worlds.

You can say that forged alloy wheels make pick-up trucks somewhat fashionable whether you are building one for the street or trail. But of course, we would rather see them getting some mud and dirt off-road!

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Your Pick-up Truck Wheel Options

Now that you know how these wheels are made, let’s go through a bunch of viable options for your pick-up truck. Some of them look best on the street, others off-road, and still others fit both scenes.

American Off-Road Wheels A105

Forged Alloy | Starts at $1,049 per set of 4

The American Off-Road A105 is a modern fusion of sorts. Its design feels like a street wheel on steroids. The multi-spoke pattern forms soft-edged trapezoid slots of alternating sizes. The studs on that deep lip add more character to its vibe.

 

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American Off-Road Wheels A106

Forged alloy | Starts at $1,049 per set of 4

The American Off-Road A106 is a strikingly clean wheel model. It is made up of eight slotted spokes, giving it a balanced appearance. The studded lip adds a lot of depth to the overall look. This goes perfectly with an aggressive tire.

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Asanti Off-Road AB816

Forged Alloy | Starts at $1,984 per set of 4

The Asanti Off-Road AB816 gives off a sporty vibe to any pick-up truck. It gets its appeal from six stubby spokes and directional slots. The wheel also has a deep lip that helps accentuate the vehicle’s stance.

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Vision 363 Razor

Forged Alloy | Starts at $940 per set of 4

The Vision 363 Razor is a modern pick-up truck wheel that puts together sportiness and street appeal. Its concaved six spokes resemble a design you would often see with sleek cars. The deep lip further brings out the details from the slots and subtle lines.

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Vision 353 Turbine

Forged Alloy | Starts at $513 per set of 4

The Vision 353 Turbine might come off like a wheel inspired by OE pick-up truck wheels. With a glance, it might be mistaken for one. But closer inspection can reveal the details donned by the spokes. It works best for pick-up trucks that could use subtle cosmetic upgrades. 

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American Racing AR172 Baja

Forged Alloy | Starts at $480 per set of 4

The American Racing AR172 Baja got that classic vibe that makes you wish you were back in the ‘70s and ‘80s. The round slots are spread evenly on a clean face. It can look very rugged with a decent set of all-terrain or mud tires.

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Vision Wheels 141H Legend 6

Forged Alloy | Starts at $611 per set of 4

The Vision Wheels 141H Legend 6 feels like a blast from the past. It is the perfect ode to the bygone days of classic muscle cars. Its six cone-like spokes and polished lip can turn your truck into a hotrod. It is best matched with tires with white letters on the wall.

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Moto Metal MO962

Forged Alloy | Starts at $732 per set of 4

The Moto Metal MO962 is the kind of wheel that puts some swagger on your pick-up truck. It has eight flat rectangular spokes fitted in an aggressively deep lip. Its offset can make the wheels pop out of the fender for a wider stance.

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Moto Metal MO992

Forged Alloy | Starts at $1,050 per set of 4

The Moto Metal MO992 looks rather sleek and sporty rather than rugged. This is the wheel you would love to put on your street truck build. Its six split-spoke design looks appealing especially with a good set of tires. 

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Fuel Triton

Forged Alloy | Starts at $816 per set of 4

The Fuel Triton can be one heck of a stylistic wheel if someone has to judge how much detail it has. Its intricate spokes form directional slots, adding to its aggressive vibe. This wheel works best for street truck builds.

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Fuel Stroke

Forged Alloy | Starts at $1,084 per set of 4

The Fuel Stroke somehow resembles the sun radiating light in tribal art. Its aggressive design owes itself to the intricate split spokes, contrasts in the finish, deep lip, and studs around it. Putting a set of this on your truck can turn it into a wicked ride.

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Method Wheels MR305

Forged Alloy | Starts at $960 per set of 4

The Method Wheels MR305 makes a very confident-looking wheel for almost any pick-up truck. It has short spokes that form soft trapezoid slots in between each. Its lip also integrates a beadlock-inspired ornament to further add some ruggedness. 

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Dick Cepek DC2

Forged Alloy | Starts at $445 per set 4

The Dick Cepek DC2 is a modern wheel designed for contemporary pick-up trucks. Its six-spoke design combines alternating machined and black accents for an aggressive look. This wheel looks and works great anywhere you drive your truck. It also comes with a wide range of sizes.

 

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Pro Comp 46 Series Prodigy

Forged Alloy | Starts at $688 per set of 4

The Pro Comp 46 Series Prodigy is one of the more modern offerings in the brand. Its five split-spoke design is a notch higher in style than its spartan steel wheel cousins. The studded lip also gives off a beadlock look that easily makes the wheel look more aggressive.

 

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Pro Comp 69 Series Vintage

Forged Alloy | Starts at $480 per set of 4

At a glance, the Pro Comp 69 Series Vintage might be mistaken as a steel wheel often associated with the brand. Despite the similar look and vibe, this wheel is already made of alloy. The round slots and the choice between black or polished finish can be the perfect throwback for any pick-up truck.

 

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Editor’s Pick: American Off-Road Wheels A106

The American Off-Road Wheels A106 combines a refreshing style with reliability for your favorite pick-up trucks.

Its slotted spokes design can easily complement the body of any pick-up truck, whether classic or modern. Pair them with good off-road tires, and it will definitely look the part.

For a flashy wheel that comes in 20” or 22", the price ain’t bad at all. And it’s available in a variety of standard and custom finishes that best match your build.

We don’t mind having this set of wheels wherever we go, be it on the street or off the road. There’s no reason why you shouldn’t too!

Special Mention: Dick Cepek DC2

We also thought that the Dick Cepek DC2 also deserves recognition. While its style is not as loud as the A106, it makes a decent pick-up truck wheel.

Its clean polished finish with black accents can add a confident vibe to your truck. The tone works with just about any vehicle color.

More than that, it comes with a wide range of sizes. It can easily fit to both mid and full-size pick-up trucks.

The best part about the DC2 is it comes with an affordable price tag.

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Our Takeaway

Much has changed with how people enjoy pick-up trucks. They have been turned into builds of all sorts and sizes.

But in all honesty, the pick-up truck will always have its soul rooted deep into adventure and utility. Researching about the best parts you can put on will help you a lot in the long run.

Have fun completing your build!

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