Nobody Wants Real Trucks, So Dealers Don't Have Real Trucks, So You Can't Have Real Trucks, Because You Don't Want Real Trucks

Timothy Cain
by Timothy Cain
nobody wants real trucks so dealers don t have real trucks so you can t have real

At this moment, according to AutoTrader and, there are fewer than three dozen new Ram 1500 EcoDiesel Tradesman 4×4 Regular Cab pickup trucks available in the United States.

That’s right, of the roughly 8,000 Ram EcoDiesels and nearly 80,000 Ram 1500s available in the United States, there are approximately 30 available in a traditional working pickup truck format: diesel power, two doors, long box, base trim, four-wheel drive.

This is no slight on Ram or Fiat Chrysler Automobiles’ dealers. They’re simply responding to the market’s demands.

You, by which we mean the truck buying collective, don’t want real trucks. So you can’t have one. Because it’s highly unlikely you can find one, because dealers know you don’t want one.

This wasn’t the pickup truck arena in which you or I grew up. True, my father drove a crew cab pickup truck, but it was an early ’80s GMC three-quarter ton with a box that extended into the next zip code, a burgundy used primarily for towing our Jayco and thus parked for much of the winter.

Yet doesn’t that explain part of the modern pickup truck’s all-around appeal? It never crossed my father’s mind to replace his beat-up old truck and Audi 5000 with a lone pickup truck: fast and leather-lined, quiet, parkable downtown, bed covered with a waterproof tonneau.

Tonneau? That sounds like something you’d sling over your Peugeot 504 Cabriolet.

Trucks now fulfill many purposes. For urban commuters, light-duty full-size trucks are becoming sufficiently efficient. For families, crew cab pickup trucks place children so far away from their parents that a thrown cheerio can’t be tossed into the front seat. And don’t think of these as cargo beds – they’re trunks that can be used, in a pinch, as a traditional truck bed. Quiet? Silent. Fast? Like a rocketship. Luxurious? Many so-called luxury cars feel spartan in comparison.

And in selling such fast, quiet, family-friendly, flexible, luxurious pickup trucks – the proverbial F-150 SuperCrew EcoBoost Platinum Limited – automakers can greatly improve their profit margins on already profitable vehicles.

As a result, fewer than one percent of the F-150s currently in stock at U.S. Ford dealers are regular cab XLs with four-wheel-drive. Only 0.5 percent of the available Chevrolet Silverados are six-cylinder, regular cab 4x4s. North of the border, only one out of every 20 pickup trucks sold by GM Canada in the first five months of 2016 were regular cab Silverados and Sierras; seven in 10 were full-fledged crew cab models.

Of course, it’s not just that buyers don’t want basic pickup trucks. Buyers don’t want regular cab, two or three-seat pickup trucks in general, regardless of the equipment level, so automakers aren’t offering them. There’s no regular cab variants of GM’s new midsize trucks, nor are there regular cabs offered by the Colorado/Canyon’s two rivals from Nissan and Toyota. The Toyota Tundra’s regular cab format is only available in base SR trim. The Nissan Titan XD was launched exclusively in crew cab form.

And back at Ram, don’t go looking for a Laramie, Rebel, Laramie Longhorn, or Limited 1500 with anything less than four doors. Y’ain’t gonna find one.

U.S. pickup truck sales are on track to rise to a nine-year high in 2016.

[Image Source: FCA & Ford]

Timothy Cain is the founder of, which obsesses over the free and frequent publication of U.S. and Canadian auto sales figures. Follow on Twitter @goodcarbadcar and on Facebook.

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  • 427Cobra 427Cobra on Jun 21, 2016

    OMG... what a riot, reading through these comments. Yes... I drive a Bro-dozer... a 2000 Super Duty supercab V10 4x4. Why? Because I like it. It's my favorite vehicle to drive (I have 4). When I go camping... the bed is filled to the rim. The dog's in the cab (rear seat removed). The truck's great for bringing home the Christmas tree... towing my Cobra (replica, of course) if need be... Home Depot runs... hauling furniture, etc... whatever. I have a 3.5 mile commute, & rarely go over 9000 miles a year of total driving... so I can drive pretty much whatever I want. Since the mileage is split amongst multiple vehicles, it's rare that any one vehicle sees more than 5000 miles a year. Is it smart for a single guy to have 4 vehicles? probably not... but it's my passion. I think it would be LESS SMART to have 4 vehicles if I had a wife & kids to support. We all make choices... to each his own... But regarding "real trucks"... mine is an XLT... nothing fancy. No leather... no infotainment... no fancy wheels or excessive lift... it's stock. I'm currently looking to replace it with something newer... and bigger (crew cab)... as the pooch is passing 100 lbs now. Looking at another Super Duty, but also considering a Ram 2500. Will definitely be a gasser... & probably 4x4... but will be lightly optioned. Definitely want the chrome grille & bumpers tho... gotta have a little bling.

    • DownUnder2014 DownUnder2014 on Jul 25, 2016

      I do like the V10 they had in the older Super Duties and Excursions. I've seen one run, they're not bad off the line either. I would love one with a Manual Transmission!

  • Jdowmiller Jdowmiller on Jun 25, 2016

    This exact truck is on a lot 30 miles from me. It's even silver.

  • Alan I would think Ford would beef up the drive line considering the torque increase, horse power isn't a factor here. I looked at a Harrop supercharger for my vehicle. Harrop offered two stages of performance. The first was a paltry 100hp to the wheels (12 000AUD)and the second was 250hp to the wheels ($20 000 (engine didn't rev harder so torque was significantly increased)). The Stage One had no drive line changes, but the Stage Two had drive line modifications. My vehicle weighs roughly the same as a full size pickup and the 400'ish hp I have is sufficient, I had little use for another 100 let alone 250hp. I couldn't see much difference in the actual supercharger setup other than a ratio change for the drive of the supercharger, so that extra $8 000 went into the drive line.
  • ToolGuy Question: F-150 FP700 ( Bronze or Black) supercharger kit is legal in 50 states, while the Mustang supercharger kit is banned in California -- why??
  • ToolGuy Last picture: Labeling the accelerator as "play" and the brake pedal as "pause" might be cute, but it feels wrong. It feels wrong because it is wrong, and it is wrong because Calculus.Sidebar: I have some in-laws who engage the accelerator and brake on a binary on/off all-in basis. So annoying as a passenger.Drive smoothly out there. 🙂
  • Johnny ringo It's an interesting vehicle, I'd like to see VW offer the two row Buzz in the states also.
  • Chuck Norton And guys are having wide spread issues with the 10 speed transmission with the HP numbers out of the factory......