After yesterday’s 1972 Dodge Tradesman van, we might as well stick with Dodge trucks of the Nixon Era for another day. Big simple pickups remain relevant long after their car counterparts get discarded, but sooner or later every 11-miles-per-gallon old work truck develops some expensive problem and becomes worth more as scrap than as a vehicle. This Dodge held on for 41 years before washing up in this San Francisco Bay Area self-service wrecking yard. (Read More…)
Toyota trucks have long been the staple of practical truck shoppers, young shoppers looking for a cooler first ride, off-roaders and just about every rebel militia. What’s a company like Toyota do to keep sales of the 8-year-old truck going? Special editions of course. Despite the higher profits, Toyota decided to skip the “freedom fighter” edition with bench seating for 8 in the bed and a .50 caliber machine gun on the roof in favor of an off-the-rack off-roader. Thus the Tacoma TRD T|X Baja Edition was born. In case you are wondering, T|X stands for Tacoma Xtreme. You know, because it is way cooler to spell extreme without an “e.”
Writing this series has made me start paying more attention to types of vehicles I’ve long overlooked. Say, the early Nissan 300ZX, or the Mazda-based Mercury Capri. Then we’ve got the beat-up work trucks that still roam the streets in large numbers but are finally dying out, e.g. the Dodge D-100 and the late-60s GM C-series. Today, it’s the turn of Ford’s workhorse from the darkest days of the Malaise Era. (Read More…)
When you write about one Malaise Era Dodge pickup, you might as well follow it up with another on the very next day. These days, crew cabs are nearly ubiquitous on big pickups, but the idea of a truck with a back seat in the cab was still something of a novelty in the middle 1970s, so this truck is an interesting truck history lesson. (Read More…)
Dodge’s D-Series trucks of the 1970s are still on the roads in large numbers, since there’s always someone who needs a simple work truck and doesn’t care if that truck is 10 or 40 years old. Still, you can always find another sturdy (if thirsty) Detroit pickup if something expensive breaks, so this Adventurer is now Crusher-bound. (Read More…)
Eric’s a pretty decent bloke. A retired teacher and UK import, he’s been living on our little block since 1968. Always quick with a wave or a clap on the back, he and his wife were first at our door to welcome us into the neighbourhood, gift-basket in hand. Since then, he’s been the consummate gentleman, nodding attentively when I’m describing my plans for the place, never intrusive, respecting our privacy but always politely interested in how we’re doing. The perfect neighbour: Fred Rogers could take lessons.
On the other hand, I wouldn’t care if he was a semi-reformed axe-murderer with a peacock-sanctuary in the backyard and a penchant for three a.m. amateur bagpipe practice – he’s got a pickup truck. (Read More…)
Well America may be the overall volume leader for pickup truck sales, the per-capita title belongs to Thailand, and they prefer a different flavor of truck as well.
One of the cool things about car shows in the Detroit area is that you will most likely start seeing interesting cars before you actually enter the show. I like to call them “parking lot prizes”, but then I’m fond of alliteration. At the recent Eyes On Design show, which benefits the Detroit Institute of Ophthalmology, I spotted a couple of prewar V16 Cadillacs, a ’61 Rolls-Royce Silver Cloud and a first generation Corvette with a custom wooden boat tail before I even got to the press credential tent. Those are not common cars but the subject of this post is particularly rare. What could be rare about a Jeep Cherokee? They were in production in the US, South America and China for over two decades. However, this isn’t a Jeep Cherokee. (Read More…)
You know what’s wrong with this country nowadays? You can’t buy a light pickup truck made by a company so agricultural that a piece of farm equipment is in its very name! That all ended in 1980, when the last pickup rolled off the strike-ridden IHC assembly line. The outdoorsy Scout is still a common sight here in Colorado (on the street as well as in the junkyards), but quite a few of the Scout’s big brothers are still punching the clock as work trucks. Here’s one that made it to the second decade of the 21st century before getting used up. (Read More…)
Chevrolet announced that production of the Avalanche pickup will come to an end in 2013 – and there’s no replacement in sight. Ironically, the Avalanche was a victim of its own success.