if you drive a pickup truck and have trouble seeing at night, it may not be your eyes. the headlights on many popular trucks aren't lighting up the road as well as they should. we just evaluated a group of 11 small and large pickup trucks and could only find one - the honda ridgeline - that's available with good-rated headlights. light levels are good. we can begin testing.
to rate headlights, we measure how far the high beams and low beams project light as the vehicle travels straight and on curves. for the low beams, we also measure how much glare is created for oncoming drivers. out of the 23 headlight combinations available on these pickups, 14 created excessive glare for oncoming drivers. a vehicle can't receive a rating better than marginal if it produces too
much glare in any of the test scenarios. the ford f-150, the best-selling vehicle in the u.s., was one of the worst performers. neither the base halogen nor the optional led low beams provided adequate visibility in any of our tests. the headlights with the worst visibility were on the chevrolet colorado. the halogen low beams on the colorado's base
trim only allow a driver to see 123 feet on the right side of a straightaway. in contrast, the led low beams on the ridgeline allow a driver to see almost three times as far. the headlight ratings for pickups follow the same disappointing pattern we've seen for other vehicle categories. as vehicle safety has improved over the
years, this important equipment has been overlooked.