By on October 18, 2012

The Dodge Grand Caravan and Chrysler Town & Country accounted for 49 percent of all minivans sold in America last month – and their year to date sales total isn’t that far off either.

With nearly 196,000 minivans sold through the end of September, the Chrysler twins make up 45 percent of the total minivan market. Broken out individually, the Dodge Grand Caravan has close to a 10,000 unit lead over the second place Honda Odyssey, and almost 20,000 units on the third place Chrysler Town & Country in terms of year-to-date sales.

Of course, this starts to look insignificant when you look at the data laid out by Timothy Cain. Year-to-date truck sales indicate that the Ford F-Seres, America’s Sweetheart on four wheels, has sold 463,733 units. The entire minivan market has racked up roughly 421,000 units so far. The dominance of pickup trucks is nothing new, but this puts in into perspective if nothing else. Not even record gas prices seem to be able to stop the full-size truck’s hegemonic stranglehold on the American auto market.

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75 Comments on “Ford F-Series Outsells Entire Minivan Market...”


  • avatar
    mr_muttonchops

    There’s something kind of endearing to see what is typically considered a work vehicle selling so well. On the other hand, the cynic will point out that a majority of these vehicles probably aren’t doing too much hard work…

    • 0 avatar
      Broo

      Indeed, I bet my Ranger sees more hard work than most of these “egoboost” commuters.

      • 0 avatar
        DeadWeight

        Okay, a relative just bought a Chevy 1/2 Ton Silverado 4×4 extended cab (and got a smokin’ deal, too). He needs a truck, as in, nothing else will fulfill his work needs.

        I’m amazed at how solid the Chevy is, how vastly improved the interior trim/fit is, and how ideal the ride quality is. It’s as quiet as a Buick, too.

        Having also ridden in a newer Ford F150, the Chevy is a far more refined truck, hands down.

        I’d like to hear any contrasting opinions.

  • avatar
    tatracitroensaab

    digging the brown ;)

    I’m amused that the Chrysler twins have been doing so well, it’s an old design and aren’t the Sienna and Odyssey better rated in Consumer Reports? Is Stow and Go really that amazing? Lol.

    • 0 avatar
      bonzoesc

      The Caravan is five thousand dollars cheaper, and I wouldn’t be surprised if the Town & Country was cheaper for fleet buys.

      • 0 avatar
        Easton

        Bonzoesc hit the nail on the head. Chrysler offers a minivan working families can afford, Honda/Toyota do not. A lot of their sales are the $19,900 special that no one comes even close to matching.

      • 0 avatar
        DeadWeight

        During the housing boom years, it stood to reason that pickups sold well because every person who “worked in the field” thought they were entitled to a brand new truck, even if they’re fingernails never got as dirty as their secretary’s.

        In the post-real estate bubble years, cash for clunkers took a LOT of older yet still functionally reliable p/u trucks out of circulation, and it stands to reason that p/u trucks are selling well again relative to total market share because so many people have become self-employed; no where is this truer than those who work in construction and associated areas.

        And it doesn’t hurt that you really can go lease a pretty well equipped Ram, Silverado or F150 for 25% to 45% less than the same vehicle would have leased for 5 years ago (we’re talking 4×4, crew cab Silverados and Rams for around $300/month or less).

    • 0 avatar
      ChevyIIfan

      “I’m amused that the Chrysler twins have been doing so well, it’s an old design and aren’t the Sienna and Odyssey better rated in Consumer Reports? Is Stow and Go really that amazing? Lol.”

      Have you ever tried to pull the seats out of the Sienna or Odyssey to get a flat cargo area? Do it once and you will realize Stow-n-go really is that amazing! :)

      I do not own a minivan, but I rent them frequently as my job sometimes requires me to carry lots of cargo. Yes, the interiors are kind of play-school quality, but the Chrysler products are the only minivans I will even look at renting because of the stow-n-go. I’m not sure how the Japanese products haven’t been able to engineer something similar, especially in today’s copycat market. Pulling and lugging seats to get a flat cargo area is so 1990s, haha.

    • 0 avatar
      C. Alan

      Having owned both a Toyota van, and now a Dodge Caravan, I can say that the stow-and-go system is OK. The down side of it is that the middle row seats in the Caravan are like rocks, and not very comfortable.
      Another area that the Dodge/Chrysler van slaughter the Toyotas and Hondas is in the rear seat entertainment area. Dodge has a pretty well thought out system that can be equipped with one or two back row screens. On a fully equipped system, with the remote, each row can pick form one of two DVD players, AM/FM/Satellite radio, audio files from the radio in the dash, or a couple of AV auxiliary inputs. Both Honda and Toyota have a dual screen option, but they tried to do is with just one very wide screen, so it’s like trying to watch two TVs at once, and it doesn’t work very well.
      Our van hauls around 5 kids. We are on our second Minivan in the last 10 years, and from experience, I know that kids will trash the interior. So rather than fork out the $30+k for a Honda or Toyota, I would rather get a cheaper Dodge/Chrysler.

  • avatar
    mikeg216

    Makes perfect sense when you think about it, with this one vehicle you don’t have to make any compromises. It is the jack of all trades, the American swiss army knife.

    • 0 avatar
      crtfour

      I’ll admit I drive a full size truck everyday. Most of the time it’s me driving by myself on my 20 mile round trip commute to work. But I can haul my mountain bikes in the back, sleep in the back on camping trips, tow my boat with it and haul 5 people in it if need be…all with one vehicle. For ME it’s a swiss army knife that works well…I guess not for everyone though.

      • 0 avatar
        Motornik

        Not to start a huge fight, but in my Odyssey, I can do ALL of the same things that you listed. Except, I can haul 8 people, actually fit 8×4 sheets of plywood (and still close rear gate), and get better gas mileage to boot. In 99% of the cases, minivan provides way more utility than extended/crew cab truck. How do I know? I had one and switched to another, so I am speaking not based on the number of preconceived notions, but on personal experience. That being said – it is a personal choice and everyone decides for him/her self

      • 0 avatar
        mikeg216

        Yeah the van works great @motornik until you need to move 5 people their stuff and a boat. Then what?

  • avatar
    krhodes1

    Obviously gas is still cheap in the grand scheme of things.

  • avatar
    1998redwagon

    i just dont get it. i look at this and see nothing i want. i must be a closet swede or german.

    almost to a person the folks that troll these sites decry the lack of options when it comes to buying a new car. no hatch, no wagon, no diesel, no manual etc, ad nauseum. we all know that numbers or well amortorized (sp?) models sell and the rest will be kept in the lineup if they make a positive statement about the company. the hatches, wagons, diesels and manuals, well they are neither.

    for whatever reason(s) trucks sell very well in the u.s. and it is hard to argue with a good profit that shows up 463,733+ times a year.

    • 0 avatar
      Easton

      You’re not alone. I can’t think of a more useless vehicle than a sedan. Modern sedans can’t hold squat in their trunks, are uncomfortable to sit in the backseat, and look bland and uninteresting.

    • 0 avatar
      George B

      Think in terms of total cost of ownership including repair cost, resale value, taxes, and insurance cost. Pickup trucks use more gasoline per mile, but their other costs tend to be fairly low. For my dad who’s retired and doesn’t drive much, owning a Silverado work truck makes good economic sense. I suspect some truck buyers would prefer to buy a stripped down body on frame RWD car with similar virtues, but CAFE has pushed them into trucks.

      • 0 avatar
        KixStart

        Why would their other costs be low? Are brakes, air filters, oil changes, etc, somehow cheaper for a truck?

        Aren’t tires going to be fairly expensive?

        And depreciation? A 2000 Chevy Suburban is worth slightly more than a 2000 Toyota Echo but the Echo didn’t set the original purchase back anywhere near what the original Suburban owner had to shell out.

      • 0 avatar
        nrd515

        I think that’s a big part of it. A lot of people would be interested in a RWD car, if it was packaged decently and priced right. I love trucks, and if I hadn’t been badly hurt 5 years ago, I would almost for sure still be driving one, probably a Ram 1500 4×4, like I used to have. Instead, I drove a Charger for 3 years and now have a Challenger. If I had the $$$ right now, I would probably own a 5-7 year old Ram or F150 as a winter vehicle.

  • avatar
    Synchromesh

    Surprising – no. Sad and pathetic – yes.

    • 0 avatar
      rnc

      No more sad and pathetic than a 7 series, S Class, A8 status symbol when something for half the price would accomplish the same ends (can get a family from A to B with enough room in the back for the clubs). American’s love status symbols and for alot of them a $50,000 F series is the symbol of choice.

      In terms of Gas, once Ford begins to incorporate more and more aluminum (Ford may have lost money on Volvo and JLR, but they got extensive knowledge in working with Al from them (LR makes thier vehicles from Al, Jag has, at various times, made the body and or body and frame from Al and before Ford bought volvo they had been investing significant R&D into manufacturing using Al)) and boron steal into them, along with the eco-boost (have driven the 5.0 and the eco and would buy the eco if I wanted a full size truck) and its just a matter of time before an 8 speed (Ford and ZF have a very good relationship) makes it way into production. GM and Chryco need to watch out or they may find themselves left behind in the truck wars due to CAFE, ford seems to have a plan and are executing it for thier full size trucks in relation to future CAFE standards.

  • avatar
    Zackman

    If a person can stomach the costs to own and feed one of these, whether a Ford, Chevy or Dodge – sorry, Toyota – you don’t count – more power to them, as a good pickup can come in mighty handy, but…98% of the time, you’re dragging a huge, empty steel box around with a powerful engine, heavy-duty gearing and a lot of weight.

    Enjoy.

  • avatar
    Carlson Fan

    What else can you load a washer and dryer into, hook a 25′ boat to the back of, and then put 3 kids in car seats and 2 adults in the cab. Just one of the many many ways I’ve put my full size crew cab PU to work in the past 9 years.

    When I get something more practical as an everyday driver in a few years I’ll probably just keep/park it and relegate it to strictly towing and hauling duties only. It’s just too valuable to me to not have around.

  • avatar
    geozinger

    I don’t understand the hate for pickups and SUVs (and variations). If I only had the money for ONE vehicle that would cover most of my circumstances, a crew cab would probably be it.

    As it is, I own two coupes and a sedan. I live in the near suburbs. I can walk (or bicycle) to many of my daily necessities. I rent (or borrow) trucks when I need them. I am not forced into using only ONE vehicle to cover all my needs. In that regard, I am very fortunate.

    I can see where someone can appreciate the utility of a truck or SUV everyday, even if they don’t use the full utility of it everyday. My cars are all (at least) four passenger vehicles; yet I commute alone to work everyday with just me in the car. Should someone somewhere castigate me for being wasteful? They can if they desire. Maybe in the grand scheme of things it really is.

    But it’s really different strokes for different folks. North Americans are generally pretty pragmatic people, I’ve often thought that our love affair with big durable vehicles demonstrated that.

    Maybe not?

    • 0 avatar
      icemilkcoffee

      Nobody is going to castigate you for driving a 4 passenger car to work because your car probably gets 25mpg. That’s a far cry from the 16mpg a full sized truck gets.

      Canadians are pragmatic people. Americans… don’t even get me started.

      • 0 avatar
        el scotto

        @ icemilkciffee Oh you can castigate like a madman when you see roads and parking lots filled with one person vehicles. It’s so bad in DC people will take rides from other people (slugging) so that car qualifies for HOV lanes.
        @geozinger Lots of hate for SUV and some hate for trucks on here. Some people feel to vent their spleens on SUVs or on people who like driving trucks. I’ve driven one or the other since I started driving.

  • avatar
    BigMeats

    1)Safety
    2)Safety
    3)Safety
    4)Visibility, but that’s part of Safety.
    5)Towing/hauling

  • avatar
    Joe McKinney

    Minivans were quite trendy in the late 1980′s and 1990′s. The U.S. market peaked at 1.37 million in 2000. After that sales declined through the next decade until bottoming out at 440,000 in 2009. The market has since stablized at around 500,000 per year.

  • avatar
    Conslaw

    It will be very interesting to see whether hybrid minivans become popular. Toyota seems primed to introduce a hybrid minivan in the next few years. In my prime minivan years, I would have killed for a 30MPG city minivan, and it would have been worth the extra cost and lost space. It seems like the hybrid components could be put in the space Chrysler uses for the Sto-N-Go bins.

    I wonder if I’m in the minority, though. After all, the Chrysler vans sell the most because they are the cheapest (at least as commonly equipped). It may be more than the market will bear if they charge $5,000 more for the hybrid when fully loaded minivans are now listing for about $40,000.

    • 0 avatar
      danio3834

      IMO the Chrysler vans sell the best because they are the best engineered. The new generation Stow n Go seats are a marvel, the powertrain is peppy and easy on fuel and they’re heavy on features. I wouldn’t use the word cheap, but value. Chrysler has always been on the ball with innovation in this segment, thats why the sell so hot.

      • 0 avatar
        mikeg216

        Drove one as a rental a few weeks back it impressed the hell out of me, the 1-2 shift was a bit clunky. Chrysler transmissions still scare me not gonna lie, but if proven reliable and if it had a center diff to move the tourques around it would compelling me to take a second look.

    • 0 avatar
      KixStart

      Conslaw,

      The current Camry LE/Camry LE-Hybrid price differential says Toyota may be able to do it for about $3500. At that price differential, Camry hybrid sales are now 10% of Camrys generally. I would not be surprised if minivan owners were more interested in the hybrid option. Certainly, minivan fuel economy is not nearly as good as Camry fuel eocnomy, so I think more consumers will believe the payback is there.

      • 0 avatar
        psarhjinian

        “I would not be surprised if minivan owners were more interested in the hybrid option.”

        I’m sure, but Toyota seems more interested still in protecting the extra margin they can make on the Highlander vis a vis the Sienna.

      • 0 avatar
        KixStart

        psar,

        They sell very few Highlander hybrids, 413 last month; there’s not much to protect.

        Let’s suppose a couple of things…

        First, that at a $3500 price point for the option, there would be more interest in a hybrid minivan, on account of the typical use patterns and the extra gas consumption of a minivan vs a sedan.

        Second, that this interest extends across all minivan buyers, not just Toyota purchasers.

        Toyota’s selling 8K minivans per month, Honda about the same and Chrysler about twice as many.

        If Toyota gets out of the gate first with a hybrid minivan, they would convert 15% of their minivan buyers from a standard minivan to a hybrid. But the product would be unique, at least for a time. They’d have to fight brand loyalty but I don’t think it’s unreasonable to forecast that they could get 10% of Honda’s and Chrysler’s sales, too. That bumps their overall monthly minivan units by 2400. And maybe they’d do even better.*

        They already have the powertrains for it; it’s hard to see how this wouldn’t pay off.

        As a bonus, they might pull in some CUV and SUV buyers. The Traverse/Acadia/Enclave triplets offer about the same level of utility. Toyota might grab some of those people, too.

        An additional bonus: I would be surprised if hybrid owners weren’t more likely to bring their cars back to the dealer for service. That’s a little extra downstream revenue for the brand operation, too. It’s certainly true in my case. I’m comfortable taking my older Toyotas to the neighborhood mechanic – he’s very good – but I don’t know if he’s prepared to work on hybrids at this point.

        (*) – And, then again, maybe not all that many. After a bit of thought, it occurs to me that buyers of the “American Value Package” Chryslers, which I expect are probably pretty dreadful minivans, aren’t going to suddenly shell out an extra $8-10K for better fuel economy. I don’t know what percentage of Caravan sales that might be, though.

  • avatar
    Easton

    This is easy to explain. I am a prime example as to why this is. My wife and I were recently in the market for a vehicle that seats at least 6 people. Our choices initially comprised of minivans and crossovers. With the exception of a bare bones Grand Caravan CVP, every other vehicle was priced well into the $30k’s (I live in Canada where we still get fleeced on prices), was ugly, and still couldn’t hold strollers, luggage, etc. once 3 or more kids are loaded in and the third row occupied. On the other hand, Dodge sold me a brand new Ram, 6-passenger quad cab, with 4 wheel drive, a Hemi engine, and attractive looks with the added bonus of being able to throw whatever I want into the back of it. The decision was a no-brainer.

    I am a lawyer and my wife is a nurse. We will be the first to admit we don’t necessarily need a truck (though we’ve been surprised at the things we’ve thrown into the back so far) and the horsepower is more of a novelty than enything else. But, dollar for dollar, there simply was no better package for us.

  • avatar
    Angus McClure

    There are circumstances that only a van will satisfy your needs. There are also circumstances that only a pickup will work. Or that would be true except that a trailer will replace the truck if you have a place to put it. Doesn’t cost much in convenience. I have one of my two trailers (the heavy one) hooked to my truck now. Going to pick up some rock today.

    As mentioned above, many north americans have two vehicles and one is a truck. If a van will tow it will do it all. I think the little rwd van that Toyota makes and featured yesterday could replace just about all of the above. If you ever towed much with a front wheel drive you know it doesn’t work nearly as well.

    I thought they were making the perfect vehicles back when Nissan, Toyota, Mitsu, Mazda etc were making a rwd van. At the time I had a rwd Ford with the 300 six. Too big but otherwise almost perfect. Agree with above. If I could only have one, it would be an extra cab pickup.

  • avatar
    icemilkcoffee

    A pickup trucck is supremely useful to have around the house. I’ve had either a pickup truck or a full size van (even more useful) in our household for the last dozen years. BUT I always buy the shttiest, ugliest, running truck I can find. It’s a tool to be used, just like a shovel. When I am done I sell it for roughly what I bought it for, and buy the next ugly truck. Needless to say- most of the time I drive my regular car for commuting purposes. I only rack up 2000 miles on the trucks a year. When I need it, it’s great to have around. But I certainly don’t need a new, shiny, fancy truck sitting there depreciating or drinking gas.

  • avatar
    CJinSD

    This month’s Road & Track has a Ford Ecoboost special advertising insert disguised as their usual technical advice column. It is a blatant appeal to educated buyers to pretend they were born yesterday and buy another turbocharged Ford vehicle. The funny thing is that the Ford flack that dictated it doesn’t even know what would constitute a good car. They brag that the turbo is expected to last the lifetime of the engine, which is 150,000 miles. That might have been a nice objective in 1979, but it is to laugh for people that learned from their Ford experiences and bought quality cars. They also boasted that 42% of F150s are now sold as Ecoboosts, with only “a few turbo failures’ to show for it. What does it say that even their shameless sales pitch refers to turbo failures? There is a nitwit tax to be paid, and it is called Ecoboost.

    • 0 avatar
      redmondjp

      I’m not sure what you drive or what your point is, but the exact same thing can be said of several European makes (cough, VW, cough).

      And the proper type and maintenance of the oil is key with a turbo’d engine. Use non-synthetic oil and never change it = turbo failure, plain and simple.

      • 0 avatar
        icemilkcoffee

        The exh gas from a diesel engine is cooler than that of a gasoline engine. The diesel turbos don’t see as much of a heat cycle and last longer.

        A turbo in a gas engined car probably won’t last longer than 150k. Ford is just being honest there.

    • 0 avatar
      rnc

      Gee 42% of 500,000 vehicles and a few turbo’s fail…travisty. And mentioning it would qualify as “Honesty”, say as opposed to your beloved Japanese cars and thier short-comings (toyota camry – oil sludge, due to a little hole being one size to small, denied for how many years?), but of course toyota is perfect so that wouldn’t count would it?

    • 0 avatar
      rnc

      And the nitwit tax is going to be paid for by japanese now that Ford has started to bring over thier euro-tech as mainstream vehicles, there is nothing left for Honda, Toyota, etc to do to seperate themselves anymore. No more special engines or transmissions, just unsustainable structural cost issues in Japan that they don’t seem to have the stomach to deal with, so thier cars get cheaper and cheaper, sounds alot like the american manufactures of recent past and we saw how that worked out.

    • 0 avatar
      danio3834

      In my experience so far, the issues haven’t been so much with the turbos themselves but with the wastegates which were told as a unit with the turbo assembly.

      • 0 avatar
        DeadWeight

        You guys are behind the times. The new turbos (many of which are attached to gasoline motors 1/2 the displacement of normally aspirated motors of a decade ago but pulling as much weight or more) are bulletproof, have been torture tested forever, and are made of proprietary unobtanium alloys that make them suited for drill bits used in deep sea oil exploration.

      • 0 avatar
        DeadWeight

        I had to add that it IS actually refreshing to see Ford being honest on the relatively short lifespan of the turbo.

      • 0 avatar
        krhodes1

        I’ve owned more than a dozen turbocharged cars over the years – I have never, not once, ever had an issue with the turbocharger on any of them. And most have had VERY high mileage by the time I have owned them. This includes Saabs and Volvos with the old non-watercooled turbos that were nowhere near as durable as modern ones. Just because there were some crappy American turbo cars in the 80s is no reason to distrust them all now.

        Use good oil, change it on schedule, and you will be just fine. Use crap oil and never change it and you will blow up a modern non-turbo too.

  • avatar
    makuribu

    I appreciate the hauling power of a full size pickup truck.
    The two or three times a year I need that, I rent one.

    • 0 avatar
      KixStart

      Or deal with vendors that have free or cheap delivery.

      And the utility of a pickup is limited. When I needed 10 tons of stone, the vendor delivered it for $50. An F-150 couldn’t have handled that task, anyway.

  • avatar
    Mandalorian

    There’s just something about a truck…

    Full size trucks and SUVs are great vehicles and very practical. Gas isn’t too much more expensive, a Subruban will get 21 on the hwy, which is fantastic.

  • avatar

    The constant quetching about gas in relation to F-150 misses that F-150 has same or better fuel economy as typical sedans. Sure it’s not 40 mpg of econoboxes, but otherwise F-150 is supremely economical, while being loads more practical. Look at the take rate of Ecoboost powered F-150s. Do I need to invoke the spirit of Nullo to make basic points here?

    • 0 avatar
      KixStart

      What do you consider a “typical sedan?”

      The late model F-150s on Fuelly do aobut 16-17mpg. The current minivans do about 21. Accords get in the mid-20s and the recent Camrys are in the upper 20s and low 30s.

      • 0 avatar
        psarhjinian

        If you completely ignore city driving and only consider “fully-locked-torque-converter-90km/h steady cruise-idea-perfect-conditions-with-a-tailwind-and-downhill” then yes, the F-150 can compete.

        Otherwise, no, not so much.

        Call it the “NormSV650′s Saab” factor.

      • 0 avatar

        And what has happened to all those Malibus? Not everyone buys a Fusion Hybrid.

      • 0 avatar
        KixStart

        Who said anything about a Fusion hybrid? Malibus typically score 25-26.

        As long as you brought up the Fusion hybrid, though, there’s 13 2010s reporting on Fuelly and they average 37.

        The basic regular cab short F-150 weighs 40% more than a Malibu, has much greater cross-secion and the aerodynamics of a barn. The F-150 is not going to get anywhere near the fuel economy of a Malibu. “Same or better fuel economy as typical sedans,” is a non-starter.

  • avatar
    ajla

    I think a Pentastar Ram gets rated at 20 MPG and a 3.7L F-150 is rated at 19.

    That’s pretty much in line with what you can get with minivans and 3-row CUVs. Full-size sedans get like 21-23.

  • avatar
    DenverMike

    It’s deceiving because we loose several 100K used pickups every year to Mexico both legally and otherwise.

  • avatar
    icemilkcoffee

    By the way- is that picture of the F150 crew cab taken in front of the apartments at Rivermark, Santa Clara? I know because I parked right there just yesterday.

  • avatar
    tacojg

    How do F-150 sales compare to CUVs? It seems like minivans have fallen out of favor, even though they can be more practical in some cases — better gas mileage, more space, lower load floor.

    The one thing that surprises me is how expensive some of the minivans have gotten, particularly Odysseys and Siennas. That could be slowing their adoption too because most minivans (besides the old Previa) used to be as cheap as a Caravan. Also, here in California, you might as well call them “mexivans” because that seems to be the biggest demographic driving them, although I don’t think that has that much to do with it.

    Of course, people keep buying more and more expensive truck too. It’s hard to believe how many people out there have $40-50K trucks, or at least how many did until the financial crisis.

  • avatar
    Lightspeed

    The dominance of pickups in the market shows how suburbanized North America is. Because, when you live in a house, that means you need to be a carpenter, plumber, landscaper and more just to maintain a suburban lifestyle. Also, if your town is like mine, then you have to separate and haul anything you want to throw out to a recycling/composting place. For all of which, you need a truck. When I went to buy our household a second vehicle I looked at some trucks and couldn’t believe the asking price for ones with 350, even 400,000KM. I ended up buying a lovely old sedan, but feel like an idiot every time I have to borrow my nephew’s Dodge Ram. BTW, having not driven a truck in 20 years I was amazed how good a vehicle a new truck is, they really are amazing to drive.

    • 0 avatar
      krhodes1

      Funny, I have lived in my own house in the ‘burbs for a dozen years now, and I see no need at all for a pickup truck. 98% of whatever I need to bring home has fit in the back of whatever station wagon I have owned at the time, and the rest has gone on the $300 Harbor Freight 4×8 folding trailer that I bought when I bought the house. Costs ~$7/yr to register, nothing to insure, never needs to be inspected, and the impact on fuel mileage when towing it is miniscule. Trailer is sitting in the yard at the moment with a load of brush waiting to go to the dump that would scratch the hell out of a pickup bed, hawthorn bush is nasty stuff. And the trailer is one heck of a lot easier to load and unload than today’s stupid-sized trucks. Deck is about 12″ off the ground. I cannot imagine owning a whole separate powered vehicle just for taking crap to the dump and bringing plywood home from Home Depot. You could store 5-6 of these things at least in the footprint of an F150.

      • 0 avatar
        el scotto

        YMMV but in VA, it would cost more to register, need insurance and plates, and our personal property tax would apply. This is NOT directed at you. I see yahoos pulling trailers with no lights on them or lights that don’t work and loads covering their tail lights. Stopping? Turning? Praying? Who knows.

      • 0 avatar
        krhodes1

        Excise tax applies in Maine too – included in the $7 a year. I think it is $2 of it. Based on the original MSRP, which was $300. Plates cost $20 or so the first year, then a few bucks a year. It’s actually paid every two years. I cannot even begin to imagine how whatever insurance would be required on a 4×8 trailer would be anywhere near what it would be on even a ratty old $300 truck. Certainly no added insurance required here, it is covered by your car insurance policy.

    • 0 avatar
      C. Alan

      I live way out in the boonies, in the mountains of Southern California on an acre of land. Now I admit I could get buy without a truck, but that would mean hauling our trash/feed/supplies in or behind our minivan. With the price of gas going up the last few years, around my area, you can pick up a 5 to 10 year old full sized suburban pretty cheap. I picked one up last year, and it will haul about 90% of the stuff a truck would, but I don’t have to pay the commercial registration rates. Given that I drive it about 5k miles a year, and it has four wheel drive for the snow, it works out well for us.

  • avatar
    86SN2001

    How many vehicles fall under the “F-Series” label?

    This really isn’t all that significant.

  • avatar
    JMII

    Despite their versatility I’m still shocked that Ford sells so many of these darn things. They are expensive and still get crappy mileage compared to a diesel. Have people really convinced themselves (or a signification other) that for 4 or 5 trips a year to Home Depot/Lowes they really a pickup?

    Personally is just too big… I’m happy with my mid-sized V8 Dakota. I do wish Ford sold an turbo diesel F100 because that would be perfect. Midsize with awesome mileage and endless torque – sign me up.

    • 0 avatar
      mikeg216

      Your midsized Dakota with the 4.7 v8 gets worse mileage then a full size truck does, epa knows it and so do you. Hated it ever since they tried to push it as a better option then the old 318 la motor.

    • 0 avatar
      mikeg216

      I am waiting for an f-150 with a factory cng conversion and a government rebate to cover the cost. Natural Gas is going for $1.89 here

  • avatar
    DenverMike

    My super cab F-150 is lots more truck than I need and my 2 br home on 2 acres is also way more house than a single guy needs and so what?

    They seem like the right size and I could’ve gone overboard, but I think I kept it conservative. Not that conserving fuel or resources has ever been a top concern, but even though diesels use less, they cost way more to one and operate. Diesels light cars and trucks = hybrids.

    Half ton trucks are a good value until you get up to the premium models. Well equipped extra cabs 4X4 full-size run about the same price as well equipped Camcordtima appliances, after rebates.

    • 0 avatar
      mikeg216

      I would argue that the luxury models provide an even more compelling value, if you are looking and something in the lower end of luxury. Such as a basic lexus or audi or Mercedes you can walk away with an f-150 platinum for the same or less these models go for 12k off sticker just for walking in the door.

  • avatar
    hubcap

    I don’t need a truck for anything work related but would love a smaller one for fun. If Jeep follows through with their plans for a Wrangler derived quad cab p/u I’ll be first in line.

    We all have choices to make and for some that’s a truck. Do most truck owners really need a truck? Probably not but it’s their money to spend. Along the same lines, do most car owners really need the car they have. I’d say that a family of four can get by just fine with something Focus, Civic, Cruze sized.

    The larger cars, especially those with sporting intentions, use more fuel. Why aren’t they denigrated like full size trucks. And while we’re at it how much house do you really need. I’d say 1500 sq ft is plenty for most families. After all, you do need to heat and cool it and that uses resources.

    Dear ones, I say this because many seem to know what others should be buying and driving. Just remember, as you want to impose your choices on someone else, others want to impose theirs on you. And you might not like what they want for you. Just remember, they have your best interests at heart.

  • avatar
    Rick S

    Our 2011 Silverado crew cab rides just as comfortably as our 2004 Grand Marquis did. It also seats the same amount, has more head room, softer seats, and gets better gas mileage with more power. Seriously impressed.


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