By on June 17, 2016

2016 Ram 1500 Tradesman 4x4 EcoDieselAt this moment, according to AutoTrader and Cars.com, 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.

2015 Ford F-150 SuperCrew dirt bike

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 GoodCarBadCar.net, 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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368 Comments on “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...”


  • avatar

    I’d buy an AVALANCHE if GM built it as an EV truck.

  • avatar
    Zackman

    That’s a real shame, because if I were in the market to buy a truck, I would want almost exactly that – a basic regular cab pickup, but with a short bed most likely. Give me an auto tranny and A/C. Just don’t give me one with those hideous all-black grilles, those are abominations and ugly as sin no matter the OEM.

    • 0 avatar
      NMGOM

      Zackman – – –

      I never buy any of my trucks off the lot. God only knows how they were treated.
      Just plan ahead a bit and order a new one.
      (This article implies that lower priced, more fundamental models aren’t available period, which is wrong.)

      ==================

    • 0 avatar
      American Rambler

      I actually have one of these. Sort of. It’s an ’89 F-150 Lariat 2×4 long box standard cab v8 automatic. It does everything I need it to do except carry more than 3 people and get better than 15 mpg. This is not a small vehicle until I park it next to any of the new pickups. It is about 2/3 the size and weight. I can tow most any thing I need, haul almost anything, not worry about scratching the paint, and will go most anywhere you do not need 4 wheel drive. It starts and runs well. Stops good (It came with rear ABS only.) Corners much better than you would think. (It has the factory handling package with upgraded sway bars front and rear, upgraded gas shocks, springs and limited slip differential.) I still have the factory window sticker.

      Would I buy a new one like it? No. I would get one with a nicer interior, stretch cab and more of the new technology. Just like what most buyers do. More comfort and better value for the money. More long term satisfaction.

      My biggest complaint of the new ones is the step in and bed floor height. They are all a steep climb up into the cab. I like just opening the door and sliding in and out. 8 to 9 inches of running ground clearance is plenty for me.

      I like a pickup box you can reach over the side to put stuff in without the need to open the tail gate. And a lower bed height to get in and out of. But that is where I differ from most of the buyers. They like the jacked up trucks with wheel and tire sizes that used to belong on semi trucks. I prefer wheel and tires that are manageable in size and weight so you can change a flat your self and not have to call a service truck to come do it for you. And when they wear out, do not cost $4,000 to replace a set.

      They don’t have those trucks on the showroom floor now because I am not walking in today or any time soon to buy one. They are stocking trucks to deliver to the buyers that are walking in the door ready to sign the sales agreement.

  • avatar
    JimZ

    Order.

    why is that such a foreign concept to people?

    • 0 avatar
      bball40dtw

      Isn’t this how the work trucks are being purchased now? When I used to buy two to five work trucks at a time (typically regular cab, 2WD, long bed, V6, rubber floor), I would always place an order.

      • 0 avatar
        JimZ

        fleet buyers usually go through a different purchase process. My main issue with the article is that its tone seems to intimate that it’s impossible to special order a truck the way you want it.

        you don’t *have* to buy off of the lot. If the dealer gives you a hassle about special ordering, find a different dealer.

        • 0 avatar
          bball40dtw

          Yes, I would always work with a fleet salesman.

          And you are 100% correct about special ordering. Ford seems to be the easiest to order with (because I’ve never been asked for a deposit or been hassled about ordering from Ford dealerships around here) , but RAM and GM will do it too.

          • 0 avatar
            dukeisduke

            Some banks, credit unions, etc., have buying programs that go through the fleet department. When I bought my ’95 F-150, my credit union financed it, and the sale went through the dealer’s fleet guy.

            And as far a base trucks go, they’re out there. A friend of mine bought a RAM 1500 crew cab a couple of years ago (V6, auto, a/c, and not much else). It looks pretty much like the one above – silver, with black bumpers and grille. He did later replace the steelies with some aftermarket alloys, but that’s it.

    • 0 avatar
      Featherston

      @ JimZ, but, but, waiting! Need new truck NOW!

      It is surprising how impatient people can be, especially with regard to a major purchase like a car or a home. Several years ago, I read a post on a BMW board from an owner who’d found an accommodating dealer who ordered him a car with cloth seats (technically not available in the US market at the time). Yes, he suffered a slight financial hit both at purchase and selling/trade-in time, and, yes, he had to wait a few weeks for his new car. But he got exactly what he wanted. As you say, why is that such a foreign concept to people.

  • avatar
    FormerFF

    Since when has a traditional US work truck had a diesel engine and 4WD? All the fleet trucks I see have six cylinder gas engines and are 2WD.

    • 0 avatar
      Kenmore

      Primo.

    • 0 avatar
      bball40dtw

      Gas V6 and 2WD is what I used to order. The last examples were Silverado W/Ts with the 4.3L V6, rubber and plastic everything, bed liner, and 2WD.

      • 0 avatar
        CoreyDL

        As a child I thought the Silverado W/T with that big red logo on the back was a special edition.

        You know, like the Tahoe Sport!

        • 0 avatar
          bball40dtw

          It’s the most special edition as it comes with rubber floors and vinyl seats.

          • 0 avatar
            CoreyDL

            Even as I child, I recognized more badging equals better.

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            MOAR badging.

          • 0 avatar
            bball40dtw

            I think we need more special edition vehicles back. We need a Canyon Diamond Edition and an F150 Nite Edition available for purchase.

          • 0 avatar
            CoreyDL

            Approved.

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            I am willing to licence myself to a special edition vehicle provided I am given at least four Daewoo Statesmen for my personal use.

          • 0 avatar
            CoreyDL

            https://en.wheelsage.org/daewoo/car9431/pictures/208005/

            Best collection of Statesman pics I’ve found. Look at that interior – light grey with light wood, and teal inserts!! It’s triple-toned!

            Obviously I’d remove the rubbish Daewoo badge and just leave the hood ornament.

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            The power of brougham compels you!

        • 0 avatar
          bills79jeep

          It was a special edition! Had all the goodies: rubber floor, 85mph speedo, no tach, AM AND FM radio, vinyl bench seat, roll down windows, and a 5 speed with a 2 1/2 ft long shifter.

          I have a ‘my first car’ soft spot for one, that’s for sure.

          • 0 avatar
            CoreyDL

            My first car (Audi 5000) was a special edition as well. It was the only one of its kind to have all those particular issues on a single day.

          • 0 avatar
            bball40dtw

            I agree. I love trucks like that. My second car was a regular cab 1998 Dodge Ram SLT with 4WD and the 5.9L. I still miss it.

    • 0 avatar

      This. This is a really unusual configuration. If you are buying a work truck with the goal of keeping the price down, you are going to avoid spending extra on a diesel or 4wd unless you really need it.

      And if you are buying a diesel to tow long distances, you might spring for a bigger/plusher cab because you are spending a long time in it.

    • 0 avatar
      dukeisduke

      Exactly. 4WD? Maybe if it’s a truck owned by a logging company, or someone else that regularly works out in the back country. Otherwise, it’s 2WD.

      I think there would be a lot higher take rate on the EcoDiesel if it weren’t so insanely expensive. A Tradesman 4×2 with 8′ box starts at $25,840 after the $1,500 incentive. Now switch from the 3.6l Pentastar V6 with the 8-speed 845RE auto, to the 3.0l EcoDiesel V6 and the 8-speed 8HP70 auto, and it tacks on $4,270 for the EcoDiesel, and $500 for the 8HP70 (required with the EcoDiesel). Now you have to decide if going from 17/25 mpg with the V6, to 21/29 with the EcoDiesel is worth $4,770.

      By comparison, the 5.7 Hemi V8 with the 8HP70 adds only $1,150 + $500.

      • 0 avatar
        thattruthguy

        Ironically, the resale value of diesel pickups supports the high purchase price, but who buys a new diesel pickup to trade it back in with low miles? :)

    • 0 avatar
      bills79jeep

      Spot on. I think the author is creating odd option combos that support his theory. Very few buyers that splurge for diesel do it in a base truck. Same with 4×4. A base work truck doesn’t have either of these option boxes checked.

      I tried to build and price a diesel Tradesman 1500 on the Ram site – it’s not even a motor option in the base truck. So, how are there even 30 of them out there in the wild? edit: Tim’s right, need to check the 8′ box option

    • 0 avatar
      Carfan94

      Agree, I live in the south. And work trucks here are always 2WD, They don’t want 4WD.(neither do I)

    • 0 avatar
      Lou_BC

      @FormerFF – 4×4 versus 4×2 is a regional thing. All of the fleet pickups I see in northern and central British Columbia are 4×4.
      My local ford dealer has 6 regular cab 4×2 (3-6.5 box and 3- 8ft)F150’s on the lot.They were various colours. The dark grey, red, and balck one’s looked good with the fleet spec black bumpers and fascia. I was looking at them with my son. That is what I want to buy him as a first vehicle. 4×2 so he doesn’t off-road it much and a truck since it should improve his crash survivability and fit his outdoorsy preferences.
      The same dealer has at least 12 fleet spec white reg cab 4×4’s with spray in liners and headache racks.

      This story is a bit deceiving since the Ram ecodiesel isn’t going to be a typical fleet spec truck. The local FCA dealer has at least 6 Ram reg cab 4×4’s in the Tradesmen package all with the 5.7. They also have at least 6 4×2’s in low end trim I suspect to appeal to the “hot rod” crowd.

      A guy who typically is going to buy an ecodiesel wants the economy of the diesel and is in love with the diesel mystique. Those guys plan on hauling the family around and maybe a camper trailer.

      I can see how Chevy only sells 0.5% base spec V6 trucks. I have never seen one on the local lots. The last Chevy fleet order from my brother’s company were 5.3 GMT900’s. I’ve seen the rare base model Colorado and they sit on the lot for an interminable period of time. The full bling Colorado’s and Canyons fly off the lot.

      Sales and profits are in civilian use crew cab 4×4 trucks at mid spec and higher trim. Dealers do not need to try to push base level trucks since the latter class sells themselves.

      I have to add that in Canada tax laws favour regular cab trucks for fleet applications. If a driver of a fleet truck with a regular cab takes it home at night and is allowed to use it for personal use it is not considered a taxable benefit. Extended and crew cab trucks are seen as able to be used as a family vehicle and therefor are a taxable benefit. My brother doesn’t mind paying an extra couple of grand a year in taxes since it is much cheaper than buying, maintaining and insuring a truck. He hasn’t owned his own pickup since his daughter wrecked his ’87 F150 10 years ago.

      • 0 avatar

        It must be regional here in New England I see regular cab short bed chevys pretty regularly on the lot, Fords not so much (but a lot in fleets) .

      • 0 avatar
        FormerFF

        I was wondering if the diesel/4WD was common where Timothy lives, but he was looking at US inventory, which is why I bought this up.

        I don’t doubt that 4WD is common on work trucks in deep snow country, but that’s not a large percentage of the US, population wise.

    • 0 avatar
      Mandalorian

      Spot on. Work trucks, even 2500s almost never have diesel engines. 4WD is regional though, in the Mountain West a good chunk of stripper work trucks have it as probably the only option, although a good chunk seem to have V8 engines as well to deal with the altitude.

      • 0 avatar
        Vulpine

        A V8 is a poor choice for high altitude work; a turbo is a far better choice simply because it can offer sea-level air and better to the engine for proper power. I’ve experienced a V8 at high altitude and it’s amazing how weak they get.

        • 0 avatar
          jim brewer

          Hey, my 300 HP bone stock 3.7L Ford is just fine here, at 7,000 feet, even when carrying a half-ton + load. I’m sure a Pentastar RAM is just as good too. The suspension is much more of a limiting factor under load.

          They had two on the lot like that when I checked. I assume that they do a steady business with tradesmen and small businesses.

          The 5.0 L v8 is much more reasonably priced than ecoboost a thousand bucks or so. Almost no difference in real world mileage. Trailer tow packages are not that much. If you really need more than the v8 offers, you probably ought to move up to a 3/4 ton.

          I happen to like the “all business” look of a low trim standard cab. I particularly admire the old ones that are unmodified.

          • 0 avatar
            Vulpine

            When’s the last time you drove up to Pike’s Peak, Jim? First time I drove up there with a V8 under the hood, it took me a full mile to pass a VW Beetle on the way up because it couldn’t do more than 20mph. I struggled to make 35 mph on the straightaways even after passing the Beetle.

  • avatar
    Fred

    Well I have solved that problem by not buying any new trucks.

  • avatar
    87 Morgan

    Not sure why this is surprising. The regular cab trucks that I see, typically, are fleet trucks for Haliburton etc.

    The guys that I know who use their truck for work have families so they opted for the crew cab with some options. Just because a fella **works** (not a desk jockey) for living doesn’t mean he is an animal that doesn’t appreciate a nice interior with heated and cooled seats.

    • 0 avatar
      JimZ

      I’ve had regular cab trucks, but my Ranger is a supercab and I’ll never go back. it’s too small back there for people (at least anyone I like) but the extra space comes in really handy for stuff like hunting gear and so on.

    • 0 avatar
      Lou_BC

      Haliburton? What? An Arab based corporation buying domestic trucks! Dubai, United Arab Emirates is their new head office.

      WE NEED TRUMP TO MAKE THE USA GREAT AGAIN.

      channeling my inner BTSR

      can’t do it…………….
      feel sick……………….
      will vomit………

  • avatar
    Dan

    Why would someone desiring a real truck buy a cushy halfton, with 4WD no less, and a 1200 pound payload rating?

    It’s not like Ford stopped making Super Duties.

  • avatar
    LS1Fan

    Maybe I’m missing something, but I’d almost say luxo pickups have replaced traditional luxury cars as success symbols. It seems the modern vehicular status symbol is no longer an Audi/Lexus/ etc, but a loaded F-150 EcoBoost Platinum Lariat Select Adamantium Harley Davidson FX4 Limited Issue Bighorn Rushmore model .

    • 0 avatar
      Kenmore

      Got driven around this past week in one of those by visiting family.

      So sweet, so safe, so effortless.

      There’s a special kind of peace-of-mind that comes from being eye-level with most of the other behemoths on our crazy, dilapidated roads.

    • 0 avatar
      sportyaccordy

      Big time. Pickup trucks and SUVs/CUVs are the belles of the ball and have definitely replaced coupes and sedans as status vehicles. Makes some degree of sense. Despite the protests of the neckbearded Jaloptariat, these vehicles just crush it in terms of practicality, comfort and ingress/egress. And in the case of trucks at least, they allow an American population living in the shadows of greatness of their WWII winning ancestors to feel like they can buy their way back to manhood and assertedness. It’s an illusory win-win for all involved.

      • 0 avatar
        Kenmore

        Ain’t nothin’ illusory about how serene that big new Ford made this whining, paranoid road-ninny feel about going anywhere any old time.

        And Ford’s seat adjustments provide lumbar heaven!

        • 0 avatar
          Lou_BC

          I much rather travel the 500 plus miles to Calgary or Vancouver in my F150. It shrugs off heavy rain and road debris and is stable as a freight train in snow. At night I’d rather play critter tag in it than my wife’s minivan. I’ve come close a few times to road kill cafe with deer or moose or bears. Foxes, rabbits etc. aren’t even a consideration.

          I get in the lower Mainland and I’m not as anxious when I look in my rear view mirror and all I see is Kenworth grill. Tailgating is a way of live down there and I got plenty of tailgate between my family and them. People are also less likely to cut you off or try to bully and intimidate you.

          • 0 avatar
            daver277

            Haven’t seen a fox on those runs for 20 years.

          • 0 avatar
            Big Al from Oz

            LouBC,
            A Landcruiser 4.5 litre diesel wagon would be a far more comfortable way to travel that distance.

            And use far less fuel.

            If you suspension is that lushish and it’s comfortable, then your truck ain’t a truck.

            You are one of those 75% who really could get away with an alternative vehicle.

          • 0 avatar
            Lou_BC

            @BARFO – “A Landcruiser 4.5 litre diesel wagon would be a far more comfortable way to travel that distance.”

            Do they have those in Canada or the USA with a diesel?

            NOPE

            5.7 litre engine that gets 13 mpg city 18 mpg highway or 15 mpg combined. Those are USA numbers AND price starts at 83k USD.

            My F150 has averaged 20.4 mpg (US gallon) on several of those trips.

            Thanks for playing.

            Better luck next time.

            Give the kid a gold star so no one’s feelings get hurt.

          • 0 avatar
            Lou_BC

            @daver277 – I tend to see virtually every kind of wildlife while heading south. Mild winters have meant a proliferation of hares and other small game. That happens to increase the small predator population.

      • 0 avatar
        NMGOM

        Sportyaccordy – –

        “And in the case of trucks at least, they allow an American population living in the shadows of greatness of their WWII winning ancestors to feel like they can buy their way back to manhood and assertedness.”

        “shadows of greatness”?
        “buy their way back to manhood and assertiveness”?

        Practicality and functionality and ruggedness and endurance and safety and low repair costs and value -per-dollar play no role, eh?

        ================

        • 0 avatar
          Kenmore

          Anti-truck guys say the silliest, pop-psych things.

          • 0 avatar
            Willyam

            If I can respectfully disagree, he’s got some valid points. (BTW I’m not anti-truck, I’ve owned several of them, most of which would fit in the bed of the beast pictured above).

            Across the street from me is a house rented by three Pipeline guys (for the uninitiated, they build/maintain oil and gas infrastructure and make really good blue-collar money). They’re young, bearded, and have a pretty good time without too many blowout parties.

            They have three driveway spots in front of a three car garage. In those spots are three F150’s, four-doors, custom wheels, lift kits, tint, all the goodies (to be fair in the garage are at least two Saleen Mustangs as well). These guys commute long distance into the boonies, but these trucks are WAY too pretty to get worked. For this privilege I’m assuming at least $700 a month is required.

            You could commute where they do for the most part in a Subaru or even a Corolla, but you cannot argue that image is at stake here, no matter how much fun they’re probably having.

          • 0 avatar
            Lou_BC

            Willyam – how long will a Subaru or Corolla last if they are travelling a few hours down a gravel road?

          • 0 avatar
            dal20402

            Subarus handle gravel abuse pretty well — it’s part of the design brief.

          • 0 avatar
            Lou_BC

            dal20402 – how will a tire on a Subaru fare when hitting a rock at 40 mph in dust?

            There is a reason why I have 10 ply tires on my truck.

            Oh and can said Subaru pack 1,500 lbs of gear?

          • 0 avatar
            dal20402

            Depends on the tires, just as with the truck. There are some real off-road tire options available in OEM Forester and Outback tire sizes, of course at the cost of on-road efficiency, noise, and tread life.

            If you’re really hauling around 3/4 of a ton of gear with you, then you need a truck. But I can’t say I’ve ever needed to carry that much except when I’m moving between houses. I expect the total payload with people and gear when I take my family on our summer vacation is under 800 pounds, well within limits on any of the cars in my stable.

          • 0 avatar
            Lou_BC

            dal20402 – just my back country extrication gear weighs 350 lbs including the dry box. (Chains, jackall’s, shovel, tow cables, recovery strap, tools, and first aid gear).

            Add 12 ft aluminum boat, 9.9 Johnson, and camping gear then add my 2 boys, wife and dogs and I’m over 1500 lbs.

            It is real easy to get to that weight.

          • 0 avatar
            jim brewer

            As a basic trim F -150 owner, I’d say overall capability and value for money are hard to beat. They even look nice. But damn they are ungainly! 4300 pounds on a standard cab is a lot of iron to be parking and it only goes up from there.

            In terms of driving a thousand miles on a road trip, I’ll take my old BMW, please.

      • 0 avatar
        SSJeep

        Nothing illusory about it… if you have $50k in your pocket or monthly budget, what are you going to buy? A loaded BMW328xi or similar Euro-Japo-Lux sedan or CUV? Or a loaded F150 that you can actually see out of, is just as fast, can carry a ton of stuff, wont be in the shop constantly, is much more comfortable, and doesnt make neighbors/coworkers prejudge you? Hmmm, thats a tough decision…

        • 0 avatar
          ajla

          “…if you have $50k in your pocket or monthly budget, what are you going to buy?”

          Chevrolet SS.

          • 0 avatar
            bball40dtw

            I thought you wanted a civilian Caprice instead.

          • 0 avatar
            CoreyDL

            The interior on that Caprice is ghastly.

          • 0 avatar
            bball40dtw

            It is. I think ajla has said in the past that he wants a LWB SS which is basically a Caprice with a non-$hitty interior.

          • 0 avatar
            CoreyDL

            There’s a LWB SS?!

          • 0 avatar
            bball40dtw

            That’s what the Caprice is elsewhere. Same platform as the Commodore/SS with a four inch longer wheelbase.

          • 0 avatar
            CoreyDL

            Ah right. The Daewoo Statesman!

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            I wants me some Daewoo Statesman.

          • 0 avatar
            CoreyDL

            So that was pretty rare in SK, and I think it sold very poorly. I saw ONE the entire time it was there (when they were still new). Drinking outside the GS25, biiiig black car pulls up, and a mom drags her kid out of the back to evening violin school or whatever.

            I nearly dropped me soju, “Jesus that’s huge, what is that?!”
            Such dignity.

        • 0 avatar
          30-mile fetch

          I’d buy the 328. Well, probably an IS350, which would eliminate the in-the-shop argument. Not a tough decision. I don’t find anything enjoyable about the way an F150 rides or handles and the jiggly head-tossing live back axle ride quality really detracts from the “comfortable” aspect. We all have our preferences.

        • 0 avatar
          yamahog

          There’s no way a 50k Lexus ES is going to be in the shop more than an F150.

          For my money (and it isn’t a hypothetical for me), I’m going to keep driving my old Toyota with a J vin until the 3rd gen prius or Fiat 500 arbath depreciate into my price range.

        • 0 avatar
          Carfan94

          “if you have $50k in your pocket or monthly budget, what are you going to buy?” I think I would probably be in a GX 460 or RX 350 for that money, I highly doubt it would be in the shop constantly, or be less comfortable than a pickup truck. Hmmm, not a very tough decision to me.

          • 0 avatar
            Dave M.

            After a trio of expensive cooling system failures in our Edge, we went back to Toyota with a certified RX350. Piece of mind means a lot.

    • 0 avatar
      LeMansteve

      Related perception: driving around in my 6-year old BMW 3 Series in rural GA, “He spent all that money on a fancy expensive import, we must be paying him way too much!”.

      Meanwhile, a co-worker buys a new truck that costs 50% more than my used BMW: “hey, nice truck!”

      • 0 avatar
        NMGOM

        LeMansteve – – –

        Yup. Just the way it oughta be.

        I bought a 2006 E-90 BMW 3-Series myself.
        Biggest waste of money ever. (BMW = Big Money Waste.)
        Look at the depreciation rate, for example.
        Gave it to my kid. At least he likes it, sort of….

        Now a righteous top-end pickup truck? Pure Bliss. Check their depreciation rate….

        ============

        • 0 avatar
          yamahog

          You’re not going to sing the same note when the used vehicle bubble pops.

          Also, a 6 year old BMW is going to have a depreciation rate and magnitude that King Ranch F150s could only dream of.

          • 0 avatar
            NMGOM

            yamahog – –

            “Also, a 6 year old BMW is going to have a depreciation rate and magnitude that King Ranch F150s could only dream of.”

            This is utter fiction. ALL pickups have lower depreciation rates than common sedan cars (with some high-end exceptions). Check them yourself…

            ====================

          • 0 avatar
            SSJeep

            Totally false – crew cab pickup trucks have some of the lowest depreciation in the industry and fly off of dealer lots. The country of Mexico is bolstering demand for the older trucks as well. The US sends a s$%#load of used pickups over the border, creating a floor for pricing domestically.

            A 6 year old BMW has generally lost 3/4 of its value (especially in higher trims, not as much in the 3 series) and most buyers wouldn’t touch it without a comprehensive warranty.

    • 0 avatar
      Lou_BC

      LS1Fan – a full bling pickup in the eyes of “non-truck” people blends in with the rest of the mid spec trucks on the roads. That kind of anonymity is reasuring to many of those buyers who feel they do not really need to show off. on the other hand I see workman who want to show off so they get the luxo pickup. I also know guys that rationalize the luxo pickup this way, ” I spend 8-14 hours a day working out of the cab of my truck so I want to be as comfortable as possible when doing it.”
      We have the car guys commenting that all a guy does is haul air and in some cases that is true but there isn’t anything out there as versatile as a crewcab 4×4 pickup. They are also easy to modify and have a huge aftermarket support industry.

    • 0 avatar
      Big Al from Oz

      LS1Fan,
      I agree 100% with your comment. 75% of pickups sold in the US are not really required. But, if they want one let them have it.

      The pickup has become a middle class status symbol sitting in the average middle class suburbian driveway, alongside the imported CUV.

  • avatar
    28-Cars-Later

    “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. ”

    XL is effectively a work truck trim, you don’t specify a motor option, but many work trucks are 2WD. Thus it makes sense that of XL trims stocked, the majority would be the base V6 and 2WD. Ditto with the Silverado, what retail buyer *wants* a V6 and 4×4 regardless of cab configuration? Zero. Fleet wants the cheap V6 and 2WD in many cases, with perhaps an engine bump in others. Oh and citing 1% of Ram EcoDiesel as an example, esp given EcoDiesel is about ten percent of stock? ‘Muricans have never said, yes I need diesel to have a “real pickup”, and even fewer said I need my diesel pickup to be regular cab only! Your cited data is skewed, it would make more sense to cite all of your data in making your argument but I am just guessing it doesn’t align with your stated point. You’re better than this.

    • 0 avatar
      bball40dtw

      Once you add 4×4, go into a SuperCrew/SuperCab, and start adding options, the XLT is barely more expensive than the XL. It can be cheaper in leases as well.

    • 0 avatar
      Lou_BC

      He must be trolling for a certain Australian blogger.

      Toyota dropped the reg cab Tacoma and Colorado/Canyon don’t even offer it.

      Reg cab trucks exist for fleets and the left over tight budget civilian buyer (by choice or by need.)

      • 0 avatar
        RobertRyan

        Tend to use them for basic work needs
        http://www.drive.com.au/what-car-should-i-buy/trade-and-commercial/toyota-hilux-4×2-workmate-review-20160303-gn9pbj.html

      • 0 avatar
        jim brewer

        The newer pickups are so ginormous that they are about like an extended cab of years past behind the passenger seat even in standard cab configuration.

        Mine easily holds an acoustic guitar in a rigid case and two medium large suitcases back there. Room for soft-sided bags back there on top.

  • avatar
    BigOldChryslers

    A couple weeks ago I saw a whole transport truck loaded with identical Ram1500 Tradesman EcoDiesels: white, standard 2-door cab, long box, black grille. I figured it must’ve been a fleet order. It was driving down a surface road, not the highway, so had to be going to one of the two local dealerships. I wanted to follow it to get a picture, but I was in a hurry to get somewhere.

    • 0 avatar

      You weren’t in Oklahoma when you saw the transport were ya BOC?

      Stigler, Oklahoma has got to be the capitol of the world for two door long bed white work trucks. Ford, Ram and Chevrolet dealers there must have 50 or 60 cumulatively. Dozens and dozens and dozens more to be sure.

      For a town with a population of 2700 it’s hard to imagine.

    • 0 avatar
      Jagboi

      All bought by Halliburton?

      • 0 avatar

        Nah. I was working in Stigler again yesterday. The Ford dealer had three of these stripped work trucks on the front row and a dozen more on the back lot The Ford dealer has gone a litte wild as he had three different colors of stripped down trucks.

        The Dodge and Chevrolet dealer (combined dealership) had a couple of dozen bare bones white trucks.

        Farming is the industry there. And ranching.

        • 0 avatar
          Scoutdude

          The other thing that no one has brought up is that this data is from Cars.com and AutoTrader.com. Dealers have to pay to put those vehicles on there so they do not always list all of their inventory on those sites. Guess which versions they are least likely to pay to put on their? Hint is is the strippo work truck, not the full bling truck.

          Also as you note it does depend heavily on the area as well as the dealership’s focus. There are dealers who actively court those fleet truck sales and will bid on every RFP that they catch wind of.

  • avatar
    sportyaccordy

    Chevy does offer a regular cab config for the Silverado through retail channels… I’d imagine it being the same for the others.

    To each their own I guess but the truck phenomenon completely eludes me. I live in NC and have ridden in a few… the driving experience is like being in the bridge of a cruise ship trying to navigate down a creek full of sailboats and kayakers. As someone used to going through turns at about double the posted limit the sensation of the truck being at its dynamic limits at the posted speed limit was alarming. But when people see you riding high, leaned back, gripping the wheel with one hand and a locked elbow, they will know you are a REAL man :)

    • 0 avatar
      NMGOM

      sportyaccordy – – –

      “To each their own I guess but the truck phenomenon completely eludes me.”

      It certainly hasn’t eluded me, since I got my first truck in 1974 (Dodge D-100), and never looked back. Would never leave home without one (^_^)… (In fact, I can’t!)

      And it seems not to have eluded American vehicle buyers, for whom three out of five best selling vehicles have been pickup trucks. (The other two were Camry and Accord.)

      And it has not eluded Ford, which has dominated the #1 place in sales for a single vehicle model, for the past 24 years, — a Ford F 150 pickup truck.

      What do others know that you may not?
      But then again, this site is “The Truth About Cars”, not “The Truth About Trucks”, — so the respondents here may suffer from severe car-o-phillia** anyway. Hence, some may never appreciate the inherent holiness of a pickup truck. Like Mom and Apple Pie.

      Or, as the Jeep T-shirt says, for one of their Wrangler products,
      “It’s a Jeep Thing – You Wouldn’t Understand.”

      ———
      ** I recommend two aspirins and a long nap, — you’ll feel more truck-like in the morning (^_^)…
      ———

      ====================

    • 0 avatar
      NMGOM

      sportyaccordy – –

      “…the driving experience is like being in the bridge of a cruise ship trying to navigate down a creek full of sailboats and kayakers.”

      Someone (a lady-type person) once asked me, of my massive crew cab, “Isn’t that a little like piloting an aircraft carrier across the Hudson River”?

      I said, “Yup. And who wouldn’t enjoy piloting an aircraft carrier across the Hudson? Think about it..” (^_^)…

      ==================

      • 0 avatar
        Lou_BC

        NMGOM – LOL

      • 0 avatar
        Carlson Fan

        “Someone (a lady-type person) once asked me, of my massive crew cab, “Isn’t that a little like piloting an aircraft carrier across the Hudson River”?”

        It’s what your used to driving. Of course my crew cab GMC HD pick-up feels really weird now when I get in it because I’m used to the Volt. When I drove it all the time it felt perfectly normal.

    • 0 avatar
      BoogerROTN

      It’s hard to take you seriously when you really believe that your toaster (appliance car) is “sporty” because it has a dimmer switch (M/T) rather than a pop-up lever (A/T).

    • 0 avatar
      Dan

      “As someone used to going through turns at about double the posted limit the sensation of the truck being at its dynamic limits at the posted speed limit was alarming. ”

      That’s one of the best things about driving a truck to me. I used to be that guy pushing a car. Between anger at the bad drivers in front of me and the fear of flashing lights behind me I could never relax on the road. I could feel that stress taking years off of my life.

      Keeping three tons of floaty BOF at 55 doesn’t feel like doing it wrong.

  • avatar
    MrGreenMan

    True Car is showing me some interesting facts:

    – Assuming it’s the LT trim, I get a really good deal if I get the crew cab. I don’t get a good deal in my area for going to the regular cab. Now, cause and effect, my assumption is it’s a snowball so it started 10 years ago with an experiment and it is today simply de rigueur that they only stock the crew cabs now. 15% below invoice because they want to clear them out before the new model year seems like a good deal.

    – Still, being at best in the $30ks, that’s not much room left to make two car payments or to maintain two different vehicles.

    – 16/22 – Hey, it sounds like a Grand National in the fuel economy profile!

    – 4×4 is still a premium. It looks to be more valuable than the bed/cab configuration. Perhaps we’re just in 4WD mania as the current silly season.

    – They are also saying they’ll help me order it from the factory but it will be an 8-12 week wait.

    If that last point is true, I guess we know why more people don’t order: Opportunity and planning. I don’t know about you, but I recall some car purchases because the last car had just bit the big one, or the repair estimate was just way too high, or I saw an opportunity to make no worse than a lateral move on the money side, or to pull slightly ahead, and get a newer vehicle.

    I guess that’s why fleet guys also buy the most fuel efficient no-frills W/T V6 edition with plastic bumpers: they can plan entirely differently when they’ve got a budget and multiple vehicles and a mechanic in house.

    • 0 avatar
      Lou_BC

      MrGreenMan – agreed. I’ve see up to 17k off on full bling trucks during the peek of the 2008 era downturn. Currently one can play the waiting game and huge discounts always pop up for mid to high end trucks. GM currently is advertising 20% off their trucks in Canada(on select models). The fleet spec trim sees a 4.7% discount. Would you buy a fleet spec Chevy reg cab 4×2 at 31,300 minus 1,500 or a 46,000 mid spec truck with 20% off? That puts you within 6k of fleet spec pricing.

  • avatar
    Roberto Esponja

    This is not a new phenomenon. Ever since the 1990’s, base model pickup trucks have not sold well at retail, individuals have always preferred mid to upper equipped ones. The base model ones simply take too long to sell.

  • avatar
    sirwired

    I don’t own a pickup, but I was under the impression that pickups were almost unique in the US auto market that you can quickly-and-easily order whatever truck configuration you want.

    Dealers keep lots full of stock for regular consumers, who are frequently hopped-up on the idea of driving off in vehicle they can get in the same day (or maybe a couple days.)

    Work trucks aren’t exactly “Star-Spangled-Summer-Clearance-EVENT!” kind of impulse buys… No need for a dealer to keep any of those in-stock at all.

    • 0 avatar
      Dan

      You can order in that there’s still some semblance of a build sheet and not just picking a trim and whether you want the one optional package or not. But it won’t come in for three months and there’s no such thing as a fire sale on a custom order.

  • avatar
    PrincipalDan

    In my area of the country you will see a significant number of base V6, 4×4, CREW CAB trucks – largely Chevy and Ram. This is due to the people who truly need 4×4 to take a family of 5 down unpaved roads in various states of repair to get all the way to their sheep corral or hogan or hunting cabin up in the Chuska Mtns.

    However where I grew up in Ohio, even in the 90s it was getting harder for the local farmers to get the basic trucks they wanted without ordering. Since my dad was a tractor salesman he was very plugged into the local farm community. A customer told him a story (would have happened in 1995) in which the farmer was trying to replace his 1 ton, 454 V8, 4×4, dual wheel, manual transmission pickup truck. He was a Chevy man to his core and visited every dealer in a several county area before he was willing to find someone who wanted to help him order a truck, given that NONE of them were stocking what he wanted. There was a GM plant in the area and one dealer flat out told him that “it doesn’t make sense to stock basic trucks, many of our customers already have employee pricing in hand and want something nice.”

    • 0 avatar
      NMGOM

      Dan – – –

      Yes. Good analysis.

      ===========

    • 0 avatar
      Lou_BC

      PrincipalDan – I’ve heard the same thing in my part of the world. I had to order my first truck since I wanted a base model hunting and fishing rig that was going to be used as an ATV substitute.
      The sales staff did try to sell me an off the lot higher trim model but once they realized i wasn’t interested they sat down and submitted my order.

  • avatar
    TOTitan

    I have the only Nissan Titan 2×4 with the off road package that I have ever seen. The only way I got it was by ordering. Im in construction management so I wanted the skid plates, suspension, and big tires so I can drive over curbs and other obstacles on job sites but dont need or want 4 wheel drive since Im in socal and never really encounter mud or snow. It has worked out well. 11 years later I still have it and have never been stuck or had any breakdowns.

    • 0 avatar
      NMGOM

      TOTitan – – –

      While I personally have never bought a “2×4” from Nissan, I have no doubt that they probably would make very good ones; straight; true; strong.

      However, I have purchased a “4×2” from Nissan (a Frontier, in fact) , and it drives really well… (^_^)

      =====================

  • avatar
    Speedygreg7

    It is simply not true that no one wants real work trucks, just that they can be hard to find.

    In the past 2 years I have purchased 2 new 2014 RAM 1500 Tradesmen Crew Cab V6 4×4, one CPO 2015 RAM 1500 SLT Quad Cab V6 4×4 and one new 2016 Nissan Frontier King Cab RWD with I4 and crank windows for the engineering company I work for. In no case was interior equipment level a consideration beyond air conditioning. In the case of the SLT, its nicer door cards do not offset the lack of skid plates, trailer hitch and spray-in bed liner that come on the majority of Tradesman models in dealer stock. The CPO SLT was purchased because it was the only truck available within a 20 mile radius with 17″ wheels and a V6 rather than 20″ and Hemi which we do not need and offer no advantage what-so-ever to our use. I would have preferred another Tradesman had it been available.

    Our jobs typically require a 3 to 4 man crew along with equipment we prefer to place in the cab rather than the bed. Crew Cab is the way to go for our main work trucks.

    The Frontier will be mainly used for 1 man crew and its small size is an advantage. Its refreshing to drive something so simple and pure. It is a pure utility truck with nothing but a radio and AC.

    Before purchasing the Frontier, I looked for a GMC Canyon in Work Truck spec, but could not find one locally that was not loaded to $35,000 plus. We typically won’t wait for a special order.

    As for the EcoDiesel, what is the advantage? There is none, only drawbacks. It’s expensive to buy and will be expensive to run, especially past the warranty. Anything it does can be handled by the Hemi, likely at lower overall cost and with better performance. And as far as mileage, the 1500 Crew Cab V6 4×4 with 3.21 rear easily exceeds 25 mpg on extended highway runs.

    • 0 avatar

      I disagree. After driving a Ram 1500 Ecodiesel on a 600 mile round trip pulling a car trailer I can report it’s just about the most perfect car towing machine on the planet.

      I ran it 80MPH on cruise for much of the trip and got 20 MPG. It didn’t even notice the hills. Also, the built in anti-sway and electric trailer brake controller is perfected on that truck.

      I know we’re talking work trucks here but the one I drove was a fancy one. The nav system pops the display up on the speedo to signal lane changes. Pure dope when you’re in a big city you don’t live in and don’t know very well. If it had a heads up display I’d have had an orgasm.

      • 0 avatar
        SSJeep

        The Ecodiesel is a great towing machine, but there are a lot of them grenading between 2k and 25k miles. Some EB owners are on their third VM Motori diesel engine already while still under warranty.

        I wish I could find exact numbers for this, as I would really like to get an EB Ram – but I have a feeling FCA may be in for a Ford 6.0l debacle with this one…

      • 0 avatar
        Speedygreg7

        I have no towing experience with an EcoDiesel truck, but do you think your experience would have been different with an otherwise identical Hemi truck?

        I still wonder if there is any overall benefit considering performance, purchase cost, reliability, maintenance costs, longevity, running costs, etc. I see the advantage of the diesel in HD applications, but not in half ton.

        • 0 avatar
          Lou_BC

          Speedygreg7 – a study was done that showed diesels do have a ROI advantage over gasser equivalents once overall costs including resale was factored in. They sampled cars and HD pickups. Ram had the poorest ROI, Ford was mid-pack (even though sample period included the 6.0 and 6.4), and Sierra was slightly better than Chevy. The ROI advantage wasn’t all that great. A couple of grand for the Sierra.

          That sample period was over the time period where emissions were being added to diesels. I’d like to see a similar study done at current emissions standards and current fuel prices. I’m betting there currently is no ROI advantage to a diesel.

          (Edit – ROI= return on investment)

        • 0 avatar

          I have made that run to Dallas so many times in so many trucks pulling trailers I can’t even count them all. Lots and lots of gas powered trucks including a 2006 Ram Hemi. There is no comparison. The Hemi does an OK job pulling a trailer on that trip but averages 8MPG.

        • 0 avatar
          Big Al from Oz

          Speedygreg7,
          I rented a 2015 Hemi powered Ram SLT dual cab a couple of months ago when I was in Miami.

          Just normal driving and keeping the traffic, driving on the Florida Turnpike to Orlando, then over to the Kennedy Space Center on the coast and back down the A1A, with some driving around Miami, etc. The SLT Hemi returned 14mpg.

          This is roughly half what my pickup would give me at the same speeds and doing the same job would of returned. My pickup has a 3.2 diesel very similar to the ones fitted to the Transits.

          My friend has a Sierra and he said it was returning 13mpg.

          So, the more I talk to people about their FE from pickups the less I’m believing these car sites, with some of those incredible mpgs people claim to be getting from their pickups.

          When it comes down to it a gas engine is the only way to go if you drive up to 5 miles to and from work. More than that I would have a diesel.

          You just don’t buy a diesel because of economy. You buy a diesel for similar reasons people want a V8 as well. It’s that effortless torque and low down power. No need to race the engine to make it work.

      • 0 avatar
        Lou_BC

        WhiskeyRiver – for what you describe, yes it has no peers BUT what about the rest of the time? A diesel truck sucks for the Monday to Friday commute to work. You idle in traffic or have a short commute and it never runs well enough to keep the emissions system at peek efficiency. It will go through multiple regen cycles in that type of driving. you add winter temperatures and the emissions system and engine never gets hot enough to be efficient. A diesel is at its best in situations where they are working over a long period of time under some load.
        In my 38 years of driving I never could rationalize a diesel truck for light personal use.
        Local EMS went from gassers to diesels and now they have shifted back to gas. The diesel units are well suited for long trip inter-hospital transfer fleets but don’t do so well with that 3 AM code 3 call where foot meets floor a minute after the ignition key is turned on.

        • 0 avatar

          Article is about work trucks. If you’re working a truck that Ram Ecodiesel is what you want. Period.

          • 0 avatar
            Big Al from Oz

            WhiskeyRiver,
            +1 I agree.

            If you are using a truck as a truck you want a diesel.

          • 0 avatar
            Lou_BC

            There are many different kinds of work so therefore a blanket statement about diesel being the best for work does not adequately cover the spectrum.
            Towing or hauling for long periods are what diesels do best. If your work entails a lot of stop/start and down time then a diesel is not the way to go.
            Another point is amortization. A diesel truck needs to cover a lot of miles to meet break-even ROI. For the use described by WiskeyRiver then it is the best solution. My brother puts high miles on trucks but kills them off in 2-3 years with 100,000 – 160,000 kilometers on the clock. you are loosing money on diesel trucks in that situation.
            It has to be a case by case analysis. Guys who tend to use trucks for work i.e. “for profit work” do look at ROI.

            Personal use is a different story. You then buy what ever makes you feel good.

          • 0 avatar
            RobertRyan

            Lou_BC
            Very little difference in the price of diesel or petrol here. Petrol Pickups are ” gophers” for small engineering, repair places. Diesels vastly more common doing the same work

          • 0 avatar
            Lou_BC

            RobertRyan – Ram has the ecodiesel and I have yet to see a Colorado diesel in the wild.

            Your mix of trucks and usages are very different than ours.

            Base model fleet trucks usually are all gassers whether they be 1/2 ton or HD. An extra 5 – 10k price on a truck that will get destroyed by minions is a waste of money.

            I’d like to see more small diesels as a choice in all of our trucks but not at a 5k premium.

            Diesel used to cost less than gasoline but now tends to cost more. lately it has been less expensive than gasoline.

        • 0 avatar
          Big Al from Oz

          Light personal use. WTF.

          You bought a truck because you can. You also bought it because you felt inferior and intimidated by “bullies”. You want to out bully other road users. Judging by some of your comments you are a bully.

          Then why do you need a “truck”.

          Wouldn’t it have been far more economical to rent a truck when required??

          Not to smart!

          • 0 avatar
            Lou_BC

            @BARFO – still tr0lling I see.

            Was that why you got banned from PUTC?

          • 0 avatar
            Vulpine

            It seems that some people simply don’t like the truth when it slaps them in the face. In this case specifically, Big Al seems nearly 100% correct. Considering one of my vehicles is a tiny Fiat 500 and I’ve had giant 4×4 Road Whales™ tailgate me in an effort to intimidate me *when I’m already doing 5 mph over the posted speed limit* makes things hilarious. Sure, those big trucks are faster, once they get up to speed, but that little Fiat is far, FAR quicker off the line than they expect and is capable of running circles around them in normal traffic where that monster power is useless. A smaller truck very definitely has the advantage in everything except raw pulling power and GVWR. Since almost 3/4s of pickup owners never even approach those limits, Big Al is right that the truck today is a pure vanity toy.

          • 0 avatar
            Lou_BC

            @Vulpine – you are a small truck fan. A Colorado or Tacoma by your own admission is too big.
            Try fitting 2 adults, 2 growing boys and large dogs into the cab of a Tacoma double cab?
            I’ve looked at them and I’ve owned small trucks.
            I buy what works best for me and currently that is a full sized crew cab 4×4. Sales stats would indicate that the majority of buyers also see full sized 1/2 ton crew 4×4’s as the best fit for them as well.

            You have valid points combined with being a credible poster.
            BARFO on the other hand is tr0lling.

          • 0 avatar
            Vulpine

            Since I don’t need to, then why should I bother? You make my point for me by trying to set up ‘real world’ examples that honestly only apply to a portion of the overall market; there’s another portion that simply has no need for that much space so why should they be forced to accept it?

            And yes, I do prefer smaller, as do several people at my bank who are anxiously waiting to see what Hyundai will bring with the Santa Cruz. They want old-school Japanese small trucks. What’s on the market today is simply too large for their wants and needs.

          • 0 avatar
            Lou_BC

            “Since I don’t need to, then why should I bother? You make my point for me by trying to set up ‘real world’ examples that honestly only apply to a portion of the overall market; there’s another portion that simply has no need for that much space so why should they be forced to accept it?”

            You actually are in the rare demographic i.e. don’t need space for a family. I on the other hand fit into the prime buying demographic for full sized 1/2 ton crewcab trucks.

            Everyone I see or know with a comparable family size to mine has a full sized 1/2 ton. Once fleets are removed from sales the only people buying regular cab pickups are young single guys or older guys wanting a second vehicle. That also appears to be the similar demographic I see in crew cab small trucks but add young families and no large pets to that mix.

  • avatar
    bumpy ii

    “there are approximately 30 available in a traditional working pickup truck format: diesel power, two doors, long box, base trim, four-wheel drive.”

    Four-wheel drive? Canada may be different, but I always considered true “work trucks” to be 2wd. That extra powered axle is splurging.

    There is an old guy around here who has a 2wd regular cab Tradesman Ecodiesel. I believe the diesel and the brown paint are the only options on it.

  • avatar
    tresmonos

    Do you own a real truck? No? I guess your opinion is invalidated.

    • 0 avatar
      bball40dtw

      Lol. Tim is also forgetting about the massive amount of HD “real trucks”.

      • 0 avatar
        Big Al from Oz

        bball,
        HD a real truck?

        Boy. To me a real truck is not a luxo barge as well.

        You will not see real trucks used as a family truckster.

        HDs can be used as a truck.

        A pickup is a pickup.

        • 0 avatar
          bball40dtw

          When saying HD, I am referring to the SuperDuty, Silverado/Sierra HD, and RAM Heavy Duty.

          Most SuperDuty trucks that are sold are not luxobarges. Ford sells a lot of XLs and XLTs to fleets in regular and extended cab form.

    • 0 avatar
      bumpy ii

      I have three! (Okay, one has carpet, but it would be a work truck by contemporary standards.)

      • 0 avatar
        tresmonos

        According to the author, my truck doesn’t exist – it is neither a real truck nor a luxury barge.
        If I were to take the ‘unreal truck’ work trucks out of my plant’s lot, it would be about 1/2 full.

        Maybe TTAC is doing flash back fridays to 1948-1972 before the ultimate in luxury, superfluous Supercab made the truck become ‘unreal.’

  • avatar

    Pick ups in North America have replaced the old school luxury land barges http://www.thestrada.net/thought-factory/2013/1/8/the-love-affair-endures.html.

    At one time a pick up was a work tool used week days to work, single cab, 8 foot box, usually a 2 wheel drive. Today a pick up is the all around luxury family/work vehicle.

    Especially in non urban areas its the vehicle of choice, usually a crew cab, with a short box. Its the family “car”, the work truck, it tows, has a speed transfer case, and puts entry level luxury cars to shame.

    Lets not forget that you sit higher than most “utility” vehicles, for a commanding view and perspective.

    Lift kits, massive bumpers, fender flares, bigger wheels and tires, a row of LED lights are very popular, and not inexpensive.

    A Ram 1500 Big Horn Eco Diesel with an air suspension competes with cars. While in certain areas of Canada an Eco Diesel is a dud, its has to say “Hemi”.

    • 0 avatar
      tresmonos

      The work truck is alive and well. I keep reading all these comments on TTAC, but I could have swore that the 200 white and 20 light blue fleet special order fleet queens I just ran through my shop last night weren’t King Ranch, high trim optioned luxury cruisers.

      No. No I must have been seeing things. Yeah the B&B is right. I must be wrong.

      • 0 avatar
        bball40dtw

        It’s because Tim is using numbers from dealer lots and adding weird combinations that fleets don’t order (plus excluding HD trucks). Work trucks are ordered by people and businesses that want them. As you indicated, they are ordered by the pants load. Many never even sit on the lot.

        • 0 avatar
          tresmonos

          I’d like to see the ecodiesel take rate as a total percentage.

          Consider me triggered. TTAC trolled me again.

          • 0 avatar
            bball40dtw

            Hahaha. They got us all.

            They’ve cracked the formula.

            TTAC: “Trucks Trucks Trucks. Questionable definitive statement. Trucks Trucks Trucks.”

            B&B: “Rabble rabble rabble”

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            Something, something, something, DARK SIDE, something, something, something, COMPLETE.

          • 0 avatar
            Lou_BC

            bball40dtw – looks like “pickup” is the new TTAC click bait. LOL

          • 0 avatar
            rocketrodeo

            I’ll click on all truck-related articles on TTAC with or without a provocative headline, with the understanding that the thread will rarely rise to B&B standards. I used to enjoy reading pickuptrucks.com, but moderation there is nonexistent and the average commenter has the manners and mentality of a pro wrestling fan. It was disappointing to see several of them land here at approximately the same time and proceed, with their ad hominem tendencies, to bring down the level of discourse on truck topics to PUTC standards.

          • 0 avatar
            bball40dtw

            Yeah. It’s garbage. I can’t go to PUTC. It’s such a cesspool. I probably do myself a favor and not respond to some of them. Pch101 has to remind me every once in awhile that it isn’t worth my time to have dialog with some of those individuals.

          • 0 avatar
            Big Al from Oz

            bball,
            I agree with you regarding PUTC.

            The other issue is PUTC is quite a “Ford” site, you might do well there with your views.

            I’d even bet PUTC doesn’t do an article on the issues confronting the aluminium F-150 in relation to it’s emissions and mpg shortfalls.

          • 0 avatar
            bball40dtw

            There are no problems with the F150 and emissions. When did Ford say that the 2015 F150 would hit 2025 CAFE goals in all cabs and configurations?

            Ford has more full-sized truck cab configurations and engines that meet 2025 FE and emissions standards than anyone else. Once the new engines and transmission hits the F150, almost all versions will hit 2025 standards.

          • 0 avatar
            Vulpine

            “Ford has more full-sized truck cab configurations and engines that meet 2025 FE and emissions standards than anyone else. Once the new engines and transmission hits the F150, almost all versions will hit 2025 standards.”

            Yeah, and when I tried to configure one the way I would want it using Ford’s “build now” configurator, I couldn’t even make the site build it; it kept changing colors, options, engine or something every time I got even close to what I wanted.

            (Not that the others were any better.)

          • 0 avatar
            Lou_BC

            @Big Al – so why did you get banned from PUTC?

      • 0 avatar
        JimZ

        yes, but dealers don’t stock those. Some dealers will have a couple on hand as test drive/demonstrators if they have fleet customers.

        I mean, I almost never see Transits in dealer inventory.

        • 0 avatar
          PrincipalDan

          @JimZ, I was amazed how long between the Transit Connect passenger version getting introduced in North America and seeing the local dealers finally stock one.

          The cargo versions however showed up almost immediately.

    • 0 avatar
      Kenmore

      “Pick ups in North America have replaced the old school luxury land barges”

      It’s simple Darwinian adaptation. Threats get bigger and more numerous, we who would survive a while longer yet must get bigger. And getting comfier in the bargain is sweet, too.

      Of course, gas prices will ultimately dig our own Chicxulub crater, but you gotta live till then.

    • 0 avatar
      Big Al from Oz

      AGR,
      Pickups are just an extension and evolution from wagons and buggies.

      Buggies were the cars of their era an wagons the pickups.

      It just the “wagons” have become huge buggies.

  • avatar
    Drew8MR

    I think alot of traditional work truck customers (stripper,regular cab 4×2,small motor,steelies) have moved on to vans, which are available stripped everywhere.

    • 0 avatar
      Lou_BC

      Drew8MR – depends on the application. A van is superior if you need a secure dry storage area for multiple little parts. Think of a van as a Home Depot on wheels. That is why plumbers and electricians like vans. They can easily be set up to carry multiple small parts that they may need on a call. The “secure” part is also important because copper wire and copper tubing is a high theft item due to salvage value.

      If you need a 4×4 then that rules out most vans.

      • 0 avatar
        wstarvingteacher

        @ Lou:

        I think you are exactly right. Drove pickups for years in the HVAC trade, then hobby farming. My last two were regular cab and I went to an SUV when I had tools and a spare stolen from the bed of my S10. That prompted me to look for security and weather proof load as you suggest.

        Some heroes were badmouthing this a few days ago when HDC suggested it but the answer to my problem turned out to be an SUV with a collection of trailers for different tasks. Also makes toting grandkids and dogs a lot easier. When I was looking I would have been just as satisfied with a four door pickup.

        Nobody should deny that YMMV.

        • 0 avatar
          Big Al from Oz

          wstarvingteacher,
          Vans are used by people transporting large stuff they want to secure and keep dry.

          Here we are undergoing a gradual transition from vans to pickups with specialised backs to suit individual trades and specialties.

        • 0 avatar
          Lou_BC

          wstarvingteacher – pickups are better for big and bulky loads or dirty fume laden loads. Loggers in my region all have pickups with fuel tanks in the back and storage boxes for oil and grease. you don’t want volatile’s in an enclosed space.
          Same goes for tree fallers and bucker’s using power saws. They leak gas and oil and you don’t want that in an enclosed space. Tool boxes protect those items.

          Each vehicle has a purpose. I don’t see vans or SUV’s used in logging or mining unless they are Suburban’s or passenger vans carrying large crews. Even then they tend to buy 1 ton pickups and add a “crummy” body to the truck. (Passenger cabin).

          Trailers do have a place and purpose as well. They just don’t work well as a pickup substitute in logging, mining and construction sites unless behind a class 8 truck.

        • 0 avatar
          JimZ

          but then you have to have space to store your trailers.

  • avatar
    Pch101

    “a traditional working pickup truck format: diesel power, two doors, long box, base trim, four-wheel drive.”

    As noted by others, that isn’t traditional at all. The traditional truck would have two doors, rear-wheel drive and a gas engine.

  • avatar
    eggsalad

    A lot of folks who drive pickups are very much into “buy American”.

    The RAM and Chevrolet standard cabs are MEXICAN trucks. Only standard cab made in America is FORD.

    In Las Vegas, work trucks are 2WD. And you can get all of them you want, from any dealer in town.

    To paraphrase Henry Ford, “You can get any color you’d like, so long as it’s white.” If you want some other color, you’ll have to order.

    Don’t forget, the buyer is not the customer, the dealer is. Dealers only stock what they think will sell. Taking up lot space (and financing dollars) with low-profit work trucks doesn’t make any sense from the dealers’ perspective.

    • 0 avatar
      TonyP

      “The RAM and Chevrolet standard cabs are MEXICAN trucks. Only standard cab made in America is FORD.”

      Tundra, available in single cab long bed, built in the USA.

    • 0 avatar
      Big Al from Oz

      eggsalad,
      I doubt the “pickup crowd” is into buying American more or less than anyone else.

      Pickups can only come from NAFTA. Pickups here are mainly imported and they sell in huge numbers.

      Our “pickup crowd” is not into buying Australian.

      • 0 avatar
        bball40dtw

        One of the reasons why Chevy/GMMC moved crew cab production to Flint from Silao, Mexico is because customers that are buying crew cab trucks in the US prefer a US made vehicle. Ford, RAM, Toyota, and Nissan all build their crew cab trucks here. It’s wise for GM to do it as well.

        • 0 avatar
          Big Al from Oz

          bball,
          Slow down with that Stars and Stripes line.

          Pickup production is being moved to the US in deals done with the UAW to offshore the less profitable vehicles.

          Pickup manufacture is profitable in the US because of the high profit margins. These high profit margins are aided by the chicken tax.

          So, stop talking sh!t.

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            Why aren’t both of your points accurate?

          • 0 avatar
            bball40dtw

            Both points are correct. So says GM and the UAW. I’m not arguing with Al. I just mentioned one of the reasons why crew cab production was moved according to General Motors and the UAW.

            “Pulling this work out of Mexico satisfies our customers that want vehicles built in the United States and allows Silao, which is located on a shipping port, to increase volume of other models that are easily exported around the world.”

            -GM/UAW statement-

          • 0 avatar
            DenverMike

            Sell the right product, and Americans don’t care WHERE it’s made or who makes it.

            Pickups can be extremely profitable, but only when selling 400+ examples a year (same as any car), especially when SUVs share the platform.

            Except you forget most early ’80s mini-trucks during the fad, were “imports” built Japan, obscenely profitable, and obviously not NAFTA. Yes Americans absolutely loved them, couldn’t get enough.

            Note, since 1979, there no changes to the Chicken tax, except for regs involving seats, involving only the BRAT and Transit Connect.

            But mostly, labor costs, even US union or non union, are a small part of bringing a pickup to market in the US, from concept to showroom.

  • avatar
    Geekcarlover

    Isn’t this the same philosophy that killed the Ranger? A customer goes to the dealership, asks for/orders a Ranger with X and Y packages with Z list of options. Realizes he could get an F150 for a few hundred more. Rips up the Ranger paperwork, buys the F150. Rinse, repeat until the Ranger is extinct.

  • avatar
    ericb91

    I work at a Ford dealer. We have four Regular Cab F-150 XLs in stock, all with vinyl flooring.

    Three of them are Reg Cab/Short Bed 2WD, N/A V6 white trucks with black plastic grille, steel wheels. But they all have Bluetooth, power locks, and windows.

    The fourth is a Reg Cab/Long Bed 4WD V8 white, black plastic grille, steelies, etc.

    They’ve been in inventory a while. But they are pretty cool.

  • avatar
    DenverMike

    The diesel makes this exact “spec” an oddball. “Real pickups” come with a gas engines, in this class. No doubt it’s premium trims that opt for the Eco Diesel, along with Nav, sunroof, leather heated/cooled seats, etc. All are seen as wasted cash, by cheapskates.

  • avatar
    TonyP

    I traveled out of state to find my 2nd gen 5.7 Tundra, single cab, standard bed, 4wd. I wanted a new single cab short bed F150 but deals are hard to come by. The single cab 2nd gen Tundra has a ton of room behind the seats too so that’s what I ended up with. It works for me, I’d guess most people with crew cabs don’t necessarily NEED crew cabs.

    • 0 avatar
      Carlson Fan

      “I’d guess most people with crew cabs don’t necessarily NEED crew cabs.”

      I had 3 car seats in the back of mine for quite awhile. Didn’t have any kids when I bought it. Guess I made the right decision!….LOL

      As others have said the utility/versatility you get out of a crew cab pick-up cannot be beat! Snowmobiling trips I take with my buddies your truck would be left in town.

      • 0 avatar
        Big Al from Oz

        Carlson Fan,
        I hate to say, what you do is not the norm.

        I own a dual/crew cab.

        Pickups and CUVs/SUVs are commonly being used for similar reasons.

        I’d bet you’ll find CUVs and SUVs tend to carry more people.

        • 0 avatar
          Lou_BC

          @CarlsonFan – looks like BARFO is trolling again.

          Oh and you do not “I hate to say”.

          You love being “a bored millennial troll creation”.

          Baruth has a way with words and tends to be right.

  • avatar
    06V66speed

    The asses- I mean, hehe… masses- are a strange bunch.

    The pick-ups that sell are high-end maxxed-out lavish trucks with sh*tloads of goodies, infotainment, blah.

    You know, I never got that concept. That’s like wearing a suit to work construction.

    All that glitter and chrome sure does look like sh*t after years of pulling trailers and parking on various construction sights.

    I presume the people who buy these discard them and trade them in immediately following the lien release?

    Suppose the working class Joes are going to have to search harder for honest-to-goodness bare bones “White Trash” (W/T, lol) Silverados and such. But, in America in 2016… who gives a sh*t about the lower-to-lower-middle class blue collared folks anyway, right???

    • 0 avatar
      DenverMike

      How does towing and dirt degrade chrome and glitter? Usually it’s the boss’s pickups that are high end, Lariat, Long Horn and up. Still most pickups are XLT/SLT to base. But if someone needs to thrash on a Limited, so what?

      • 0 avatar
        Vulpine

        Lariat is mid-level and still suitable for “work” compared to the higher trims for Ford. The Tradesman is the RAM equivalent while the LT would be the Silverado equivalent. I highly doubt someone with a Limited or Long Horn would “thrash” it. The King Ranch for a while was advertised as, “Your office on Wheels”, which pretty much says its working purpose is not as a truck, but a mobile office. There are quite a few vehicles that could serve that purpose much better at the same price. A small Class B motorhome comes to mind.

    • 0 avatar
      Big Al from Oz

      06V66speed,
      I bought one because I can. I started out looking at SUVs, ie, Disco’s, even a Grand Chrokee, Patrol.

      I found the midsize pickup to be able to do what I wanted off road and camping.

      Camping gear on the back of a pickup isn’t that bad. Acutally most anything used off roading can handle the weather.

      I never pretended like the 75% of pickup owners that I’m a “truckie”.

      I’m also a boss and my pickup is blinged out and full of leather with a diesel.

      • 0 avatar
        Lou_BC

        “I’m also a boss and my pickup is blinged out and full of leather with a diesel.’

        you have alleged to be in the military.

        A “boss’ in that organization does not buy a truck to lord over the minions.

        Oh and your truck is an ugly BT50 rebadge of the Ranger.

        Your credibility once again is razor thin.

        • 0 avatar
          Big Al from Oz

          LouBC,
          You haven’t seen our parking lot or car park or however you people talk in Canada.

          Why would you buy a truck to “rule others”??

          Wow, another full on Lou’ism.

          My organisation values other attributes to make leaders aka bosses. My subordinates will sometimes call me “boss”. I don’t mind so long as the setting is correct for that kind of langauge.

          We normally call each other by our nicknames and/or first names. The area I work in the military is envied by many of the “foot” types. We are quite laid back and have to be. Our trust in each other is paramount. Anything less would have you removed.

          So in Canada he who drives the biggest pickup is the boss??

          Quite odd indeed.

          • 0 avatar
            Lou_BC

            @BARFO – wow. That was quite the twist on reality.

            “I’m also a boss and my pickup is blinged out and full of leather with a diesel.”

            You said that not me.

            “Quite odd indeed.”

            Yes you are.

            LOL

            Thanks for playing.

            You are a barrel of laughs.

            I hope it is deliberate on your part. If it isn’t then it is truly pathetic.

  • avatar
    Big Al from Oz

    I’d say the article is slightly askew in regards to the numbers and what Tim defines as a work truck. But I don’t disagree.

    The reality is 75% of all pickups sold just don’t work. They are big cars. It’s the same here. Mid and high end models are all the rage as well.

    The US has many more 2WD pickups than we do. I read (a few years ago) that 3/4s of our pickups are 4×4 and around that time 83% were diesel.

    I even see some mid and high end models on building sites being used by subbies and labourers.

    I’m also a believer if you are buying a vehicle for real work, you’d want a diesel. You just can’t beat diesel for work and off roading.

    The daily driving family “truckster” would be acceptable in gasoline.

    Pickups have become the choice car alternative for the person who wants to display their middle class success. This is no different than the Audi/MB/BMW types.

    The normal person who just wants to go from point A to point B and drive appliance buy those FWD cars things, like Honda Accords, Focuses, Camrys, etc.

    I’m glad Tim used the diesel numbers to highlight and prove his point.

    A diesel in a pickup is a great way to drive, especially off road and towing you just can’t beat a diesel.

    I’m surprised with those acres of little d!ck grilles on US pickups to make the owner feel like they are driving a real truck more “real” truck diesel engines aren’t sold. This does indicate that the US pickup is just a facade, like I stated, a pickup and CUV in the driveway is as good as having a couple of BMWs sitting there …… to impress the neighbours.

    I just hope the 75% who own the daily driving pickup facade never tow or load their pickup. They’d be a danger to all.

    I’ve already read a few justifications from the pickup crowd on the “whys” we have them and need them. I even read one comment from some “pickup” guy who lives in BC on how he’s bullied less on the road. What a dumbass justification. He bought a pickup so he can “out bully” others. Wow!

    I own a pickup, a diesel and I use it and like it. It’s not a big pickup, but it will off road better than a full size. I bought it as a toy, I don’t need it.

    • 0 avatar
      bball40dtw

      Your 75% number is based on absolutely no facts whatsoever. It’s based on one data point called, “What Al thinks”.

      • 0 avatar
        Vulpine

        @bball: I’m going to concur with Big Al on this one; where I live, full sized family trucks outnumber real working trucks about 3:1 and I live in a farming area. A lot of these people merely want to LOOK like they work for a living.

        • 0 avatar
          bball40dtw

          Again, you are basing this on observations and not actual numbers. I didn’t say he was wrong, but the number he threw out there has no correlation to any actual data or facts. “I see these many things during my day” means absolutely nothing.

          • 0 avatar

            I believe I saw a study in 2010 that claimed less then 50% (more like 25% I recall) of the US truck market was personal use. I have since had no luck finding it.

          • 0 avatar
            Big Al from Oz

            mopar4wd,
            There is a difference between a vehicle bought for a tax write off and actual use.

          • 0 avatar
            Lou_BC

            @mopar4wd – I recall the same study. 50% was categorized as personal use.

            The fact that some people miss is that “personal use” and “work use” often involve the SAME truck. My brother has a fleet crewcab that his company buys and lets him use. There is absolutely NO way to mistake it as a private vehicle but it does accumulate personal use miles.

            I see pickups that are on the other side of the coin that are listed primarily as “personal use” but also see legitimate work duty.

            As bball40dtw has said – “Again, you are basing this on observations and not actual numbers. I didn’t say he was wrong, but the number he threw out there has no correlation to any actual data or facts. “I see these many things during my day” means absolutely nothing.”

            In one day i saw 3 separate morbidly obese women behind the wheel of old clapped out Grand Caravans.

            would it be fair to say that every used GC is bought by fat women?

          • 0 avatar
            DenverMike

            1982 means the height of the Mini-Truck Craze. Mini trucks were such a huge fad, they eclipsed fullsize pickup sales, and we’re talking folks from all walks of life, not traditionally pickup buyers, jumping into the fray with virtually no need for a pickup or hauling.

          • 0 avatar
            Lou_BC

            This is straight from that study that Vulpine posted and in support of what Mopar4wd said:

            “Total truck registrations in 2002 included 45 percent pickups, 28 percent SUVs, and 14 percent minivans.”

            That totals 87% of vehicles classified as trucks.

            (Edit: not sure why this got posted above Vulpine)

          • 0 avatar
            Vulpine

            … Of which it clearly states 77% are for personal use.
            45 + 28 + 14 ≠ 77
            45 + 28 + 14 = 87, therefore of all TRUCKS, 77% are for personal use. Now, if you wish to link me to more specific data, I’m willing to accept it. So far, this is the closest I have found to even come close to giving that kind of information.

          • 0 avatar
            DenverMike

            “Fleet Sales” *alone* are more than 25%, way more! And do you know who qualifies for “Fleet”?

            “You buying 10 or more trucks, Mr. Vulpine??

          • 0 avatar
            Vulpine

            I’m waiting for you to show me “actual data or facts”, Denver. He referenced one census document and I clearly referenced and linked another that shows private use far higher than anyone else wants to admit. Now, if you have specific data–not hearsay, actual, verifiable data–I would be happy to see it and stand corrected. Until then, your argument is opinion and personal attack.

          • 0 avatar
            Lou_BC

            @Vulpine – 77% of the total. It classifies trucks as SUV’s, vans, and pickups. There is 13% not mentioned.

            Where does it say EXACTLY that 77% of pickups are personal use?

            Depending on the part of government rules you look at, trucks are vans, SUV’s, pickups, and commercial tractors.

            For the purpose of import tariffs any vehicle defined as being more passenger oriented then it gets removed from the “truck” tariff.

            I know guys who work in logging and construction who have pickups to get to and from the job site and since they are salaried employees that counts as personal use. They carry fuel, oil, grease and small parts for the machines they operate but unless it is their machine and their business it all counts as personal use. That is no different than a banker going to work with a briefcase full of work related documents.
            If my brother uses his company truck on his time he has to log it in as personal use.

          • 0 avatar
            Vulpine

            @Lou_BC: I am still waiting on verifiable data. I’m not arguing your point; I’m just stating that the only HARD data I can find says 77% of all trucks are personal use and nobody has been able to empirically disprove that or actively break out pickups from other, “so-called” trucks that don’t deserve the label. What I am trying to avoid is make a statement that can be easily disproven by a little research such as what we’ve been seeing bandied about here with NO references to support them. I at least offered a supporting reference.

            Now. Where’s the proof?

          • 0 avatar
            Pch101

            “the only HARD data I can find says 77% of all trucks are personal use”

            You’ve done a fine job of proving that you are illiterate. Even you shouldn’t be so brainless that you can’t figure out that the government definition of “light truck” isn’t limited to pickup trucks. I’m sorry, but Uncle Sam hasn’t provided an answer to your question, so you’ll have to try to find it somewhere else.

            Incidentally, your lack of reading comprehension skills does you no favors in a medium in which literacy is required. (And I understand the irony of attempting to communicate in writing with a guy who is so utterly lacking reading comprehension skills.)

          • 0 avatar
            Vulpine

            Show me the proof, bball. Until then, you’re blowing smoke.

          • 0 avatar
            Lou_BC

            @Pch101 – you have a way with words. LOL

        • 0 avatar
          Big Al from Oz

          Vulpine,
          After a very quick search here’s what I found.

          There is data out there I read several years ago stating that 75% of pickups in the US were personal transport. I wonder what it is today? 80% I just can’t find it.

          Maybe Tim can find this information out. I don’t want the number of pickups sold for a tax write off either.

          In 1982 57% of pickups sold were used for personal transport.

          1982!

          So, what is it today? 50%. I say to the numbnuts out there spanking their ding dings, get on your bikes.

          https://books.google.com.au/books?id=_CU6AQAAMAAJ&pg=PA3&lpg=PA3&dq=percentage+of+pickups+used+for+work&source=bl&ots=BnXXTOr06G&sig=1pC06NKSSzfhh4cWa9YmdAfH_xQ&hl=en&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwj5_YOs8K_NAhXRq5QKHddAC68Q6AEIRDAG#v=onepage&q=percentage%20of%20pickups%20used%20for%20work&f=false

          • 0 avatar
            bball40dtw

            A relatively recent Ford Motor Company study stated that 39% of truck owners buy their truck for work, 44% buy for towing, and 17% for image.

          • 0 avatar
            Lou_BC

            Wow.

            A 1982 census report is relevant to this discussion.??????????

            “1982 Census of Transportation: Truck inventory and use survey.”

            BARFO – got anything recent and/or credible?

          • 0 avatar
            Vulpine

            “About 77 percent of all trucks were used for personal transportation, while 20 percent were operated for business, including for-hire use.” — http://www.census.gov/prod/ec02/viusff/ec02tvff-us.pdf

            This references up to 2002 in the US.

            Apparently that 1982 census is extremely valid when compared to newer data.

          • 0 avatar

            Vulpine, That includes all trucks not Just pickups, that includes SUV’s Minivans, PT cruisers etc. The study notes 45% as pickups.

        • 0 avatar
          DenverMike

          OK so we’re talking “trucks” including PT Cruisers? For “private use”??

          What a bunch of sh!t

          • 0 avatar
            Vulpine

            Personally, Denver, I agree with you on one point: if it’s not Body on Frame, it shouldn’t be considered a truck. PT Cruisers, this horde of crossovers and “space frame” utility vehicles are not “trucks” in the truest sense of the word, they’re “Utes” as far as I’m concerned. Utility vehicles designed for light, personal use. However, we don’t have the choice when the industry and our governments want to call them ‘trucks’.

            Yes, the Industry itself is at fault ESPECIALLY because of the PT Cruiser and the HHR. They were given truck-like styling and called “trucks” in order to bend the CAFE laws. Until our government learns to recognize the difference we’re stuck with it. Maybe our government would like to buy a fleet of Honda Ridgelines and use them for the same tasks they use BoF pickups. Maybe then they would realize the difference. Then again, maybe not. If they can perform the same tasks at least to minimum specs, maybe they are trucks, hmmm? As I said, I don’t agree that they are, but the new Ridgeline is clearly demonstrating a significant improvement in what ‘unibody’ vehicles can do.

            So don’t blame me if the numbers are skewed; blame the OEMs who tried to cheat CAFE.

          • 0 avatar
            DenverMike

            No, BAFO stated “75% Pickups”, when it’s really 75% “Trucks” including PT cruisers, HHRs, CUVs, SUVs, etc. That what I meant by ” a bunch of sh!t”.

          • 0 avatar
            Vulpine

            How do you know it’s “a bunch of sh*t”? Do you have proofs? Right now that 77% figure is the only verifiable data I’ve seen and I’ll acknowledge that the number includes several different classes of trucks (including classes 4 through 8.) What I haven’t seen is anyone PROVING that pickups fall anywhere different from that overall number. Just because pickups make up 45% of all Trucks doesn’t mean that 45% of pickups are individual-use vehicles. For all we know, breaking out each class has 77% of that class’ vehicles private use. In other words…

            If you can’t refute verifiable data with other verifiable data, you’re just blowing smoke.

          • 0 avatar
            Lou_BC

            I found this Automotive news article from 2009. http://www.autonews.com/article/20091130/RETAIL03/311309959/need-a-pickup-truck?-nah-not-really

            “A Ford spokesperson said core truckers — fleet buyers, occupational buyers and buyers who mix work and recreation — have increased from 30 percent of the segment in 2003 to 40 percent currently.”

            “In Ford’s view, the largest segment remains occasional-use buyers — those who may haul a boat or an RV a couple times a year. In 2003, they represented half the segment but have fallen to 43 percent, Ford says.”

            That mirrors what bball40dtw has said.

          • 0 avatar
            Vulpine

            Ok, a decent article. But note that this was when the economy was falling and truck sales across the board were falling with it. The economy, despite what some would say, has obviously recovered significantly and truck sales with it. The telling point comes just before that first chart where we see, “But even if the segment recovers, automakers probably won’t regain the past volume of personal-use buyers. Automakers say most urban cowboys are switching to cars and crossovers. Fuel economy is the main motive.”

            That’s a speculative statement that may or may not be valid today. Personally (and no, I don’t have data to back it up, just observation of what’s on the roads around me) I think the personal use pickup has grown during the recovery. Out of a dozen pickup trucks on my street, not including mine, only three are seen ever carrying any kind of load and all of them are ten years old or older. The remaining are either custom painted, have their beds covered with a hard tonneau or both and are typically crew cab models used exclusively as family cars. On in particular has a crew cab Silverado where the back seat is for the exclusive use of his Great Dane dog. Nothing, but nothing, ever rides in the bed. His previous truck was an Avalanche.

            I would like to see Autonews revisit that article and come up with a definitive answer for today.

          • 0 avatar
            DenverMike

            @Vulpine – You still don’t get it? He trolled us. Most of what pickups are grouped with, as “trucks”, are “individual use”, including CUVS/SUVs/minivans/HHR/PT Cruisers, etc.

            What’s the actual % for “pickups” only? Who cares?? Obviously it’s *nowhere NEAR* 75%! Besides, “individual use” can and does include many pickups that blur the line, doing extensive hauling and towing, not for pay.

            And there’s millions of “individual use” owners, including “snowbirds” that only use their pickups for towing RVs.

          • 0 avatar
            Vulpine

            It’s you who’s not getting it, Denver. He made a statement which I supported with PUBLISHED FACTS. All you’ve rebutted with are personal opinions and straw man attacks. The question at hand, “Are people using trucks as working vehicles” is a valid question that deserves a definitive answer. If you can’t answer that question with verifiable data, then the existing data must stand, no matter how vague you consider that datum to be. It’s that simple.

          • 0 avatar
            DenverMike

            I told you BAFO was right about “trucks”, but wrong (trolling) about “pickups”. Pickups is what this tread and article is about, not pickups lumped together with PT Cruisers, HHRs, CUVs, etc.

          • 0 avatar
            Vulpine

            You keep telling me, but you have yet to SHOW me. Show me the proof, Denver.

          • 0 avatar
            DenverMike

            “Proof” BAFO’s a troll? Or prove PT Cruisers aren’t pickups? Either way, what you’re asking for, there’s no way to prove. There’s a huge “grey area” where private pickups haul RVs near 100% of their miles, and others see “work” at varying percentage/occasions. Part of why you own a truck is the “you just never know”.

            But riddle me this: How do “fleet sales” of pickups, easily exceed what BAFO claims are “used for work only”? Of course you know “Fleet” sales are extremely protected from regular “work pickup” buyers, meaning “one man” operations (even 10-man operations), small farms/ranches, small businesses, including mom-n-pops, etc??

          • 0 avatar
            Vulpine

            “But riddle me this: How do “fleet sales” of pickups, easily exceed what BAFO claims are “used for work only”? Of course you know “Fleet” sales are extremely protected from regular “work pickup” buyers, meaning “one man” operations (even 10-man operations), small farms/ranches, small businesses, including mom-n-pops, etc??”

            Do they? You have proof of this?

          • 0 avatar
            DenverMike

            35% of F-150s are “Fleet” and no way does that account for F-150s sold to tradesmen/farms/ranches/businesses/etc, that don’t qualify for “Fleet” and go through “retail” channels.

            borgmanfordmazda.com/ford-work-solutions.htm

          • 0 avatar
            Vulpine

            So an un-dated article by a Ford-specific website (a dealership, no less) is empirical proof that more trucks are sold for “fleet” purposes than for private purposes. I at least have referenced government sources, not some extremely biased dealership.

            Again, where’s the proof?

          • 0 avatar
            DenverMike

            35% is what I’ve heard from many sources. And that’s a current F-150 in the link. If this still doesn’t suit your fancy, find something remotely contradicting. You won’t.

            It’s 45% “Fleet” for Ford in total, and 65% for all of F-series, up to F-750s. Governments don’t report car sales totals.

          • 0 avatar
            Vulpine

            “It’s 45% “Fleet” for Ford in total, and 65% for all of F-series, up to F-750s. Governments don’t report car sales totals.”

            But they do report car REGISTRATIONS. Every new vehicle has to be registered if there is even a chance it will be used on county or state roads.

            So, show me the proof.

          • 0 avatar
            DenverMike

            The DMV doesn’t specify “Fleet”. These are well published stats, so move on if you can’t be bothered to find sources YOU deem acceptable. If you knew ANYTHING, on the topic, you’d find my figures and link, totally reasonable, if not LOGICAL.

          • 0 avatar
            Vulpine

            “The DMV doesn’t specify “Fleet”.”

            I gather your data-mining skills are abysmal; a little logic work could EASILY determine fleet purchases by just noting how many go to a single owner. How hard is that?

            So again, show me the proof. If it’s just words from you, it’s opinion only. Show me verifiable proof.

          • 0 avatar
            Pch101

            The fleet data reported by R.L. Polk (now IHS) is based on registrations data — Polk will obtain it from DMVs that make it available, and from dealerships in locations where the DMV won’t provide it.

            Presumably, Polk looks at commercial registrations data and the types of owners that are on the registration, such as corporations, partnerships, LLCs, etc. to determine what constitutes a fleet sale.

            The fleet calculations are not limited to the fleet sales programs offered by the automakers. They include smaller 1-5 vehicle fleets that do not qualify for any OEM fleet program.

            If you were to get your fleet data from a source such as the Automotive Fleet website, then you’re getting data produced by Polk. Even the federal government buys data from Polk — it is pretty much the industry standard for this sort of thing.

          • 0 avatar
            DenverMike

            The 35/45/65% split sounds more than reasonable to me. If anyone thinks different and can overrule it, I’ll stand corrected. Yeah I like it. BAFO can’t touch it, neither can you.

            It’s safe to say F-650/750s are at least 99% “Fleet”, without looking it up. If I’m wrong, it won’t be by much. And it would take someone totally anal to say “Show me the Proof!”.

          • 0 avatar
            Vulpine

            You’re already overruled by data clearly linked in this forum which says 77% are privately operated, not “working” trucks like farm, construction, etc. It is on you to find verifiable evidence otherwise.

          • 0 avatar
            DenverMike

            Now we’re back to “proof” PT Cruisers get privately used, along with HHRs/CUVs/SUVs/Cubes/etc? Shocking, right??

            Likely 99% are privately used. If we’re talking “1/2 ton pickups” alone, which is what BAFO clearly implied, it’s likely 25%, and much less when you consider private users that “work them” frequently.

          • 0 avatar
            Vulpine

            Very funny, Denver. I’m ROFLMAO. As you WELL know, I’m looking for proof that pickup trucks are NOT 77% individual use. You’re attempting to use logic, for which I will give you credit, but logic is not PROOF.

            Prove to me, with verifiable sources, that pickup trucks in and of themselves are less than 77% individual use. Until you do, you’re blowing smoke.

          • 0 avatar
            DenverMike

            If true, you’re not “looking” very effectively. Heck, you’re not even “looking” at all! I’m not your ‘search’ gofer.

            BAFO gave ambiguous “info”, grouping all sorts of “trucks” together in one meaningless stat, and that’s exactly what you’re hanging your hat on. That’s fine. You’ve got your’s and I’ve got mine.

            Mostly I see no reason for a dealer to lie, or exaggerate current “fleet” totals. Zero. They’re just mentioned in passing anyway. Totally reasonable and inline with all other sources anyone’s seen. Good enough for anyone reasonable, and that’s where it ends for me.

          • 0 avatar
            Vulpine

            Personally, I don’t care about your words any more, Denver. I presented documented proof that pickup trucks, along with other types, show 77% individual use. I’ve presented verifiable evidence and linked it on these boards. YOU are the one trying to refute them. So show me the proof.

          • 0 avatar
            Pch101

            Neither one of you is qualified to discuss statistical data.

            Vulpine can’t comprehend what he reads. Unless he wants to establish grounds to sue the high school that was negligent enough to give him a diploma, he should just stay quiet.

            Fleet sales for full-size Class 2 pickups in recent years have been about 18-20% of the total market. Commercial fleet has been about 10-11% of the total market, which leaves the rest for government and rental. (Class 2 does not include the heavy duty pickups.)

            Polk does its best to estimate commercial fleet, but there is probably a segment of the “retail” market that involves private individuals who use trucks for their jobs that are not registered to companies. So the numbers may slightly overstate the size of the non-work segment.

    • 0 avatar
      DenverMike

      As great as you think diesels are, their sales in OZ will continue to slip way as Euro 6 and 7 are rolled in, and diesel subsidies taken away. Actually, there are very limited things diesels do better than gas engines, off road and towing. Mostly diesels are a bad idea, below class 8, big rigs.

      As you know, Australian sold, midsize diesel pickups are still pre emissions.

      • 0 avatar
        RobertRyan

        Dream on. Euro 7 does not exist, sales of diesels are through the roof
        Notice midsize and diesels are very much increasing in the US

        • 0 avatar
          DenverMike

          OZ is still back in Euro 5, pre emissions, pre DEF/SCR, diesel Dark Ages. Diesel sales are down, over all, in Australia. If there’s an kind of isolated, small uptick in diesel sales that you’re no doubt referring to, it’s to avoid upcoming “Euro 6”.

          • 0 avatar
            RobertRyan

            Yet, US Diesels cannot be sold here and midsize pickups and diesels are gaining ground in the US. Forgot to mention Vans as well.US introduction of the Ford Ranger not far away

          • 0 avatar
            Big Al from Oz

            RobertRyan,
            TTAC just had another spasm and some kind “FlashShock” or whatever problem. It has actually double posted! Below is my comment.

            …………………………………………

            RobertRyan,
            I love it when others put their foot in it? But this guy just can’t help himself.

            Hmmm ….. did you know we’ve had AdBlue since 2011!

            Since January 2011, all new heavy vehicles using diesel in Australia, have been fitted with systems to limit the pollution coming from their exhaust. The most popular system uses DEF or diesel exhaust fluid.

            http://www.polydieseltanks.com.au/adblue_def_aus32.htm

            Here’s the new 2016 Ford Everest service manual. Guess from who? Ford!

            It appears it uses AdBlue!

            http://www.fordservicecontent.com/Ford_Content/Catalog/owner_information/Everest_U375_TEC_Australia_2015.pdf

            What is AdBlue ;)

            Wow! You can even buy it at SuperCheap Auto! Why do we need it??

            https://issuu.com/onlinecatalogue/docs/supercheap-auto-trade-deals-austral

          • 0 avatar
            DenverMike

            No doubt “Adblue” emissions vehicles are starting to pop up in OZ, except it’s still not required for OZ passenger cars, or Ute pickups. When Ad Blue is required for markets where Audi and Mercedes sell diesels, it’s much cheaper to simply sell the Adblue cars in Australia, than building 2 different cars just because OZ doesn’t require Adblue emissions. Nice spin though BAFO.

          • 0 avatar
            DenverMike

            When Adblue US diesel pickups can’t be sold in OZ, obviously it has nothing to do with emissions. They’d be the cleanest diesel pickup on the island. In fact they are. See Performax and other imports of late model US diesel pickups running around OZ

            It’s great the US is increasing uptake of Euro vans and midsize pickups. Oh was I supposed to retort on this? Oh, by the way, “grey market” US fullsize pickups are seeing a bit of a renaissance in OZ, with uptake increasing dramatically, including Adblue diesels, despite exotic car prices.

        • 0 avatar
          DenverMike

          Euro 7 won’t hit OZ till 2020. Diesel will be rare, niche items by then.

  • avatar
    George B

    It’s easy to buy a new work truck so long as it’s white. I helped my Dad buy a fleet oriented pickup truck at a dealer that specialized in fleet commercial sales. http://www.5starchevrolet.com/fleet The entire lot was filled with work trucks.

  • avatar
    Vulpine

    And people wonder why I call them Road Whales™. A large sedan or wagon with the same drivetrain would probably get as much as 50% better fuel mileage and still offer the luxury and roominess of these big trucks. But they still wouldn’t meet CAFE economy standards despite that unless they used a hybrid system, which Americans will shun because they’re afraid they’d be seen as “greenies.”

    • 0 avatar
      Big Al from Oz

      Vulpine,
      Read the link in my comment below.

      It appears the new beaut aluminium F-150 is having problems in meeting it’s emissions and mpg requirements (some models). So, aluminium and the engine to make all engines obsolete isn’t that good.

      I think Wards made the correct decision by not having an EcoThirst in the running because of it’s high fuel usage. 15.6mpg from a 2.7 litre engine is quite high, by any measure (according to Wards data). Add this to the EcoThirst Mustang gradually slowing down as time goes by.

      I wonder if Ford is gaming the media, journo’s an consumer?

      VAG/VW? I would like to hear the excuses from the B&B supporting the “icon”.

      The problem is not as bad as VW.

  • avatar
    Big Al from Oz

    I do hope TTAC does a piece on this issue confronting Ford and it’s shining star. The aluminium F-150.

    It seems they just aren’t going to “cut the mustard”. EcoThirst and all.

    http://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2016-06-16/ford-s-crown-jewel-the-f-150-has-a-big-problem-after-overhaul

    • 0 avatar
      Lou_BC

      “The four-wheel-drive, 3.5-liter SuperCab –- which Ford says accounts for about 2 percent of F-150 sales — falls 1 mile per gallon short and emits 15 grams of CO2 per mile more than allowed, he said.”

      The site that BAFO is banned from just carried a story about this. They felt that the story in Bloomberg is wrong.

    • 0 avatar
      Scoutdude

      That article is pure click bait, for does not have a big problem, in fact they have no problem what so ever. CAFE stands for Corperate AVERAGE Fuel Economy. So 2% of the trucks that they sell are above the CAFE standards but since 98% of the trucks they sell meet or EXCEED the CAFE standards they beat the CAFE target. If it does become a problem then all they have to do is say if you want a crew cab, short bed 4×4 the base engine is the 2.7l EcoBoost. Boom problem solved by deleting an check box on the order sheet.

      I guarantee you that Ram and GM have configurations that don’t meet CAFE standards by themselves, but again that is balanced out because that configuration is only part of their total sales. However it is Ram and GM that have the real problem because their trucks that don’t meet the standards are the ones that are more popular with buyers.

      • 0 avatar
        Vulpine

        @Scoutdude, @Lou_BC: Here I will not disagree with you. As you say, CAFE means Corporate Average Fuel Economy. However, unlike the earlier version where trucks were singled out with their own “average” trucks are now included in the overall average…including cars since crossovers and certain “SUVs” are listed as trucks. You would think this gives the trucks an advantage but cars themselves–the sedans and what few coupes and wagons are available–were themselves held to barely within the CAFE rules, which is one reason why FCA was forced to build their first Dart to specifications that I believe even our government felt would cause them to fail. FCA met the challenge but the resultant model was given very poor marks by reviewers because it simply couldn’t offer the performance Americans want. Maybe if the Dart had been an Americanized Fiat 500 (well under 3000 pounds) with the same engine/tranny combo it might have been more popular but the rules specified it had to be American-designed and there are some places where the Italians are better. You should try driving a Fiat 500 for yourself; the thing’s amazingly lively for only 101 horsepower and still achieves 40mpg on the highway.

        My point is that if the trucks have to average below CAFE requirements, the cars, crossovers and SUVs NEED to exceed those limits by a significant amount. That time is coming with the advance of battery-powered cars and plug-in hybrids. I also believe that as those technologies improve and prove themselves, trucks too will join the hybrid and all-electric ranks.

        • 0 avatar
          Scoutdude

          No “trucks” and “cars” still have their own CAFE targets. However they can now essentially trade the credits between those two fleets, so in reality it is truly one fleet as you say.

      • 0 avatar
        Lou_BC

        @Scoutdude – BAFO is trolling. I agree with you and that is what I understood from reading through the article. CAFE is a corporate average. As long as the average is above what government wants then they can get away with a few vehicles being outside the rules.

        I bet that is why Toyota doesn’t try too hard to upgrade the Tundra, Sequoia, or LandCruiser. Those three are complete pigs on gas but Toyota’s fleet average as a whole is off the charts.

        I’ve said this before, they could put a V12 in the Tundra that gets 2 mpg and still not have to worry about CAFE.

        FCA on the other hand is heavily dependant upon pickups and SUV’s. Funny how the Bloomberg article glossed over this statement, “Sergio Marchionne, chief executive officer of Fiat Chrysler Automobiles NV, has said his 2018 model Ram will save fuel with a bigger battery that lets the engine shut off at stoplights.”

        That’s all they got?

        Anyone who knows trucks would of been all over that.

        Somehow Ford is in trouble because of aluminum trucks with hybrid technology in the works and a rumoured small diesel?

        • 0 avatar
          Scoutdude

          The fact that Toyota only sells a few Tundras doesn’t matter that much in the grand scheme of things.

          So yeah in the grand scheme of things Ford is in the best position for Truck CAFE since only 2% of the fleet exceeds the target and only slightly.

          Once the new umpteen speed trans starts shipping even their worst configuration should meet the standards. (and those that already meet or exceed the standards will get a boost too). Then add in the coming hybrid and the potential diesel and Ford is far from being in trouble with CAFE.

          • 0 avatar
            Lou_BC

            Scoutdude – a while back I read that some regular cab configurations may be in danger due to “footprint” regulations. We have already seen Toyota cancel the regular cab Tacoma and GM does not offer it in the Colorado/Canyon. I could see the short box regular cab truck go the way of the dodo bird and the 8ft box reg cab hang around for fleet use. Even if “footprint” rules and a lack of sales kills the reg cab 1/2 ton there will be the HD reg cab to go to or a stripped out extended cab 1/2 ton.

          • 0 avatar
            Vulpine

            You hit on a very valid point, Lou; truck sizes are growing because the OEMs continue to try to dodge the restrictions instead of facing them directly and complying. The trucks are getting so large that it will be functionally impossible to meet later CAFE goals without going hybrid or all-electric and by then they’ll be so big and expensive nobody will want them. I’ve been complaining about their large size since roughly 2004 when the crew-cab became pretty much their standard model and have complained even more lately because they continue to grow to the point they’ve become unwieldy no matter where you try to operate them. They’re only barely staying under Class IV status on curb weight alone, much less their physical dimensions and GVWR/GCWR.

            Yes, the OEMs keep growing them because that’s the only way they can meet current CAFE and if they aren’t careful they’ll be competing with Class VI trucks for size by 2025.

          • 0 avatar
            Scoutdude

            Yeah I’d say the “1/2” ton reg cab short bed truck in in danger as the Cafe rules get tougher. However for the foresable future the 3/4 ton can still come in that configuration. On the other hand they can do what has been done some many times before and create a “heavy half” to bump it into the exempt range.

            The most recent example is the E150. The final versions were really the old E250 with an E150 badge. I have a 2009 and it is rated at the base 8520 GVW or about a 3200 pay load. The same year E250 has a GVW of 8600. GM on the other hand just discontinued the 1500 series vans and now start at the 2500 series.

            It kind of surprised me the first time I saw an E150 with 8 lugs and load range E tires. At first I though oh they probably just replaced the fender with a JY unit and left that badge.

            The early example is the IH Scout which in 1975 had its GVW boosted to 6200lb from 5000-5200lbs to avoid the catalytic converter. The F&E 150 was created for the same reason, to bump the GVW into a range that at the time had lower emissions standards. For a while in the late 70’s you could buy an E/F 100, 150, 250 ect. GM had the heavy half to give customers a big block 1/2 ton without a Cat too.

            What comes around goes around.

          • 0 avatar
            Lou_BC

            @Vulpine – What we are talking about is why Ford went to an aluminum pickup. There is a mpg/emissions penalty for decreasing the square foot area of a pickup. IF they make the F150 physically smaller they then have to face tougher rules. You keep the truck dimensionally the same but drop 500-800 lbs. Ford then gains an advantage in that size class. It also helps Ford sell the F Series as a work vehicle because you can increase cargo ratings while remaining in a “lighter” GVW class.

          • 0 avatar
            Vulpine

            “What we are talking about is why Ford went to an aluminum pickup.”

            No, Lou. What we’re talking about is the headline of this article: Nobody Wants Real Trucks, etc. The evidence pretty much shows that trucks are not being used as trucks by the majority of owners and that over the last 10-15 years that has skewed even farther, though as some have stated I believe it’s due to the abandonment of the large platform cars like Ford’s Panthers and their GM equivalents. The only “large” cars left are the Chrysler 300 and Dodge Charger for the US and some European models and they offer a different, not necessarily ‘masculine’ image as today’s full sized trucks.

            As for MPG, I don’t care why Ford went to aluminum; it really makes little difference because Ford and the EPA have discovered that losing that 500-700 pounds had almost no effect on highway mileage and only minimal effect on city mileage. One Billion Dollars spent on gaining one measly mile per gallon when losing physical size alone could have doubled that or more. My nearly 20-year-old Ranger gets 21mpg in town and over 27mpg on the highway at posted speed limits. Imagine what a modern engine and transmission could do for it. Over 30mpg? I’d honestly bet on it. Even with that 2.7 EcoBoost. I’d almost bet on 35mpg with that engine.

          • 0 avatar
            Kenmore

            *My 20 Year-Old Ranger*

            Is that a Country song yet?

          • 0 avatar
            Lou_BC

            Vulpine – this part of the thread was about CAFE. You mentioned the increase in size of trucks. I should of worded my comment better but it explains why Ford went to aluminum.

            You can shave weight by making a product smaller and/or use lighter materials and smaller engines. Footprint rules kill decreasing physical size as source of improvement. That leaves lighter materials and smaller engines. Ford has gone that route.

          • 0 avatar
            Vulpine

            Shaving weight does not improve aerodynamics, Lou, and highway mileage is as much a part of CAFE as in-town mileage CAFE is demanding near 50mpg for TRUCKS in 2025. If they can’t even make 30mpg now, how will they possibly make 50mpg in less than ten years? Size and shape are as important as weight when it comes to economy, along with drivetrain.

            Honestly? I expect to see a lot of plug-in hybrids and all-electric trucks entering the market between now and then.

          • 0 avatar
            Scoutdude

            Vulpine, it is only when you make it small that you need to hit that 50mpg in 2025 which would actually be 37 on the sticker. Keep it big and you only need to to 30mpg for a 23 sticker.

            https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Corporate_Average_Fuel_Economy#Agreed_standards_by_model_year.2C_2011-2025

          • 0 avatar
            Vulpine

            “Vulpine, it is only when you make it small that you need to hit that 50mpg in 2025 which would actually be 37 on the sticker. Keep it big and you only need to to 30mpg for a 23 sticker.”

            And how expensive will those big trucks be in 2025? Starting price $45K or more? I can already out-do today’s pickup trucks with a near-20-year-old Ranger. Including the mid-sized models.

          • 0 avatar
            Lou_BC

            @Vulpine – pickups aren’t going to shrink anytime soon. As long as CAFE is footprint based they could grow in size.

            Why do you think “heavy halfs” came into being in the 70’s/80’s era? That was to game mpg/emissions regulations. That is the same reason why the so called domestics went to large BOF SUV’s.

            CAFE rules encourage status quo and a push to bigger pickups. They will get lighter and sprout smaller engines.

            The “highway” mpg aspect of testing is almost irrelevant since testing doesn’t actually approach true highway speeds. All a pickup has to do is show good “highway” mpg around 55 mph. That is where my truck gets it’s best mpg. That isn’t any different than “lab” testing. Those small TTDI engines will also shine at that speed. Everyone complains about real world mpg since they don’t drive at “test” speeds.

          • 0 avatar
            Vulpine

            A minor historical issue, Lou, but otherwise you’re right. The Chevy Suburban was a large SUV long before CAFE, though Ford didn’t create the Explorer until the ’70s or ’80s if I recall correctly. Their biggest SUV prior to that was the Bronco, even then intended to compete with the Jeep CJ more than a full-sized SUV. There’s a whole story around that, only related to CAFE after the gas crunch of the ’70s.

            I also agree with you on the EPA ratings of all vehicles. That’s also why there’s always so much outcry when cars don’t reach their EPA mileage. What’s ridiculous is that I consistently exceed EPA highway mileage by driving at or below speed limits, even when crossing mountains. You know about my ’08 Jeep Wrangler with the “minivan” engine and people simply cannot believe I can achieve 25mpg on a 150-mile and longer run. And I’m not hypermiling, I cruise at 60-65mph using the cruise control and maintain a steady speed. That alone makes a huge difference in how far you can go on a tank of gas. I used to average 33mpg in a ’96 Camaro by just driving sensibly. In both cases I typically exceeded EPA by 6mpg or more.

            BUT… CAFE will eventually demand an economy full-sized pickups cannot achieve using an ICE alone. Eventually, just to reach the CAFE average, they’ll either have to go hybrid-electric or start shrinking again with at least part of the fleet to stretch the average. Today’s mid-sized trucks are not small enough to make a significant difference. They should have gone pre-’00s size while keeping the same drivetrains to see the best economy. One mistake they’ve been making is putting undersized engines which end up having to work harder when you want an over-powered engine loafing along for economy. Everybody here and on PUTC has argued, for instance, how the 2.7 EcoBoost and 3.5 EcoBoost use more fuel under load than 3.5 NA and 5.0 NA under the same conditions. Those two EcoBoost engines should be standard equipment for a Ranger the size of mine. They could even be slightly detuned or rev-limited for safety and even better economy. Even the old Ranger needs about 200 horses for best performance and economy. But giving it 300 horses is overkill.

  • avatar
    RS

    It is a shame more buyers at dealers don’t order base and low trim models for their lots. It must be because the margins are low on base models and ordering a hundreds of Laramie, Lariats and Platinums that have birthdays on the lot is somehow more attractive on a program/kickback level.

    • 0 avatar
      bball40dtw

      Part of it is because XLTs lease well so there is no point ordering XL in any significant numbers. Ford still sells more F150 XLTs than any other trim.

    • 0 avatar
      Big Al from Oz

      RS,
      I think there are better and cheaper alternatives on offer for the business person.

      The US now has those little van things, like the Nissans, Fiat/Ram vans, plus the larger vans for working and moving around lighter weights.

      Pickups have become the domain of the big rear wheel drive daily drivers. Do you want to drive your car if it doesn’t have power windows, A/C and the rest of the bling? View pickups in that fashion.

      75% are now just family trucksters, not trucks as such.

      Even the capability vs the size of the pickup is not good. They are now what I term an “either-or vehicle”. That is most sold can only carry a vehicle full of people and their packed lunch and not much more, a driver with his 1 500lbs in the bed and not much more, or the driver and tow to the maximum limit and not much more.

      The pickup can’t do all at once, hence “either-or”. If it could the suspension would make it uncomfortable for daily driving empty.

      They are now mainly a huge car. Even the Colorado/Canyon weigh more and are larger than most any car on the road other than a full size.

  • avatar
    Lou_BC

    Kudos to Timothy Cain.

    We have almost hit a Baruth level of hits at 182.

    LOL

  • avatar
    Jagboi

    Every work truck I have seen in Western Canada is 4×4. It’s needed for winter, and for trucks that see oil patch use 4×4 is essential to get to wellsites. To make a wellsite road run a bulldozer through the trees, flatten the ground a bit and call it a road. Real fun in the spring when it’s wet, I don’t know how many times I’ve had to be towed out by a Cat because the mud was too deep for a wheeled vehicle. The rubber floor was essential, as they got cleaned up by going to the carwash and hosing out the interior.

    The company I was at had a mix of 1/2 tons (gas) and 1 tons (diesel), what you drove depended on what job you did. Technical people like Engineers and Geologists usually got the 1/2 ton, and the rig in crews drove the 1 ton crew cab, as they were hauling heavy valves, fittings etc. Pipe and other specialized equipment always came in on Kenworths with trailers, towed into location by one or more D8/D9 Cats.

    Light duty (F150/350) trucks usually lasted 3 years or about 500,000km. We always bought Fords, they stood up the best and had the lowest running costs. Tried a few GM models, they were not as durable past 300,000 km, but a good alternative. Dodge was a joke, they just fell apart. Good for city people I guess, but not as work truck that is expected to be used everyday.

    • 0 avatar
      Lou_BC

      Jagboi – my brother’s company found that anything over 100,000 km for bush trucks was going to start needing repairs. 160,000 k was the most they tended to push it.

      • 0 avatar
        Jagboi

        There is still a large percentage of the km are on highway, so they do last longer. If it’s all logging roads and no pavement, I could see 160,000 km being the useful life. This was oilfield service work in Alberta/Saskatchewan and NE BC.

        Depends a lot if you’re based out of Medicine Hat or Ft St John/ Edson/Whitecourt too.

        • 0 avatar
          Lou_BC

          Jagboi – my brother used to be responsible for inspecting roads, culverts, bridges and camps for CanFor as well as supervising some road and bridge construction. His trucks were mostly on gravel roads. His new job sees more paved road use but he still spends a large chunk of his driving time on gravel roads.

  • avatar
    Big Al from Oz

    These types of articles I love. It’s amazing that a car site has so many hits regarding what is deemed by some a “truck”, remember a car site. So, how much a truck are these trucks if “car” people are so passionate about them. They are cars!

    I’m totally entertained by the comments to justify the ownership of these “trucks”. Most are just subjective and emotive. Even back in 1982 when the ratio of real working pickups was much higher 57% of pickups were for personal use.

    How often do you hear a “truck” person actually stating the truth regarding these trucks, form what it’s used for, to it’s mpg. Why the lies? To justify to those who are listening the logic behind them buying a total overkill of a vehicle. The reality is, like anywhere else in the world they are bought because we are affluent enough to operate them.

    No, different than a country that has millions of motor scooters and tiny cars. Most can only afford to operate them. Owning pickups does not make us better, which is the main logic I’m reading into some the responses. Apparently the size matter for a pickup to improve your status in society.

    Or as that person from BC stated, “I bought one so no one can bully me on the road”. Wow! What a lame reason for the ownership of a vehicle. Talk about being insecure about your own abilities driving.

    Here’s the truth about the US pickup.
    1. They are what I deem a “princess”. They are animated to appease those who think they are trucks. Let me remind you how many 22′-24′ long trucks do you know of that can only carry normally between 900lbs-1 800lbs and ride like a car? Really, the US pickup is that much a princess it is protected and pampered with different emissions and FE regulations in comparison to cars and yet it is mostly a car! The pampering of the princess doesn’t stop there, it’s protected from being bullied by imported pickups with a special 25%!

    A princess wagon. If it was that great a vehicle and is that strong and in demand why the need for a 25% import tariff on other pickups?? Hmmm…..

    2. How many trucks do you know of that can accelerate 0-60s in many cases under 7 seconds? And as a truck, why do you need this? For towing?

    3. How many real trucks are normally sold as mid to high end vehicles?

    Trucks are for work, like tractors plough, trucks haul more than air.

    People in their minds have created this illusion regarding pickups, they pamper them, talk of them as if they were your favourite mutt out the back.

    Like I stated be real about why you own one, like the 75% others who own them. Yeah, you tow, but what you are towing is this really needed in your life or is it a want, like the pickup?

    This is why there are not many “real pickups”. They are toys, great toys at that.

    This is an emotional topic because of people attempting to justify owning what is not needed, only wanted. There is no logic in owning one, unless it is used as a work vehicle.

    Why don’t you diehard pickup people become more like the performance car people and admit it. You own one for several reasons.

    Yup, these are great articles, as it bring out the subjective illogical in car drivers.

    A full size 1/2 ton is just a car alternative, or this much excitement would not be generated on a car site.

    • 0 avatar
      VoGo

      My Odyssey has hauled more drywall than all of my neighbors’ Silverados combined. More 2X4s than any of their F150s. All inside the vehicle, not exposed to the elements. But somehow those “gussied up 4 wheel drives” are more manly than a vehicle purchased because I had 3 kids.

      America is a weird place sometimes.

      • 0 avatar
        Lou_BC

        @VoGo – try taking a few bags of dog sh!t to the dump in the back of your van. LOL
        I had a Safari for 2 years and that thing was cavernous inside once I removed both sets of seats. The problem with a van is the inside smells like your cargo rather quickly. That is fine if you are hauling lumber but not so fine if you are cleaning up the yard in the spring after all the snow melts. I had two Labrador retrievers and they had an affinity for every swamp within 1k radius of any hike. I used to carry my son’s dirt bike in the van and the smell of gas was always an issue.

        I do agree that many do not use their trucks for truck like work but how many actually track day their sports cars or drag race their muscle cars?

      • 0 avatar
        DenverMike

        BOFO is just doing what Bogans do best. Disrupting forums and causing general internet mayhem. When known facts are hit with a bombardment of completely false data, the facts can start to change and eventually the real facts/data overruled. That’s got to be why BAFO sticks to clean/clear “75%…” only, for example, never changing it up, like “70+…”, “Around 3/4s…”, etc.

        I’ve seen commentors that don’t know him well, take him for serious. We all did, back when the BAFO and Robert R team first showed up here. We were not familiar with the OZ car/pickup market and easily took their bullsh!t for fact.

        Who the heck would lie? And for what?? Except we had never heard of “Bogans”, racists or otherwise.

        But all the interesting “facts” they brought, didn’t quite pass the smell test. So I started searching everything that came out of their mouths. There wasn’t ONE FACT they didn’t totally distort, or were the completely opposite of what they claimed.

        Most of us here had never heard of, let alone experienced an internet troll, first hand.

        By the way, BAFO and Robert R. didn’t exactly meet on this site.

    • 0 avatar
      DenverMike

      I guess BAFO thinks if he repeats his bullsh!t enough times and in enough forums, it’ll eventually become fact.

    • 0 avatar
      NMGOM

      Big Al From Oz – – – –

      “There is no logic in owning one, unless it is used as a work vehicle.”

      Who made you the emperor?
      You come across very much like a bigoted, provincial British socialist I once knew.

      Maybe you should read the US Constitution once in a while: might be good for your soul.
      If I feel like buying a pickup, I will buy a pickup, — even if its only function is to look pretty for going to church on Sundays.

      Beyond pickups, I have in fact been in discussions to buy a really gorgeous Class 8 Kenworth W900 semi-cab, with sleeper, of course. And I don’t plan to haul or tow a bloody thing. I just plan to sit it in my driveway, and warm up that nice diesel daily to watch delightful plumes of black soot making lazy circles in the sky. Might even take some trips and see if I can beat 6 MPG. Yes, those are called “RIGHTS”…

      Back to pickups: there are many reasons for people NOW to get these wonderful vehicles, BEYOND their original functions as the work trucks of the 1920’s and 1930’s. Here are eleven (11) of them – – –

      1) Practicality: they can haul and tow anytime you need it, and pass the cow-manure test;

      2) Reliability: they have been among the most reliable vehicles ever made: check “Consumer Reports”;

      3) Ease and minimal cost of repair: simple structure and design mean fewer expensive problems;

      4) Height and ground clearance: better vision in traffic; better deep snow accommodation in winter;

      5) Less expensive to purchase per volume for modest, basic models: about $38K for a LOT of vehicle;

      6) Endurance: ave. car life = 11.7 years; ave. pickup life = 15.2 years of ownership*;

      7) Body-on-Frame: the tough structure of this frame method is undisputed for long-term strength;

      8) Rust resistance: being higher off winter’s salty water means less brine splashing into critical areas;

      9) Safety: collision survivability in pickups is better than the average sedan: check NHTSA crash data;

      10) Traction: off-road, or on-road in inclement weather, its hard to beat a balanced, 4WD pickup.

      11) Upright seating: Folks have gotten tried of lay-down driving positions in econobox sedans**.

      ————-
      * Had a 1974 Dodge D100 that went 22 years and 225,000 miles with NO repairs other than standard wear-replacement items (brakes, wipers; etc) Did not even need a new clutch! I gave it away to a monk for his goats (3 years); and he gave it away to farmer to haul fire wood out of the “back 40” (still running).

      ** This may be a harking back to the sedans of the 1930’s and 1940’s, when people actually sat nicely upright in their vehicles: kind of a rediscovery of simple basic seating.
      ————-

      =====================================

      • 0 avatar
        Big Al from Oz

        NMGOM,
        So you want one? Your comment really does nothing to counter my point of view. It only cements my comment. You want one for subjective reasons. You come up with a pile of comments (nearly all) that could of been slated towards any vehicle, not just pickups.

        Do you really think a pickup is cheaper to own than a Camry? I think you’d better look at the cost per mile for a pickup vs a normal family car.

        Even you comment that pickups are “simple structure and design mean fewer expensive problems” I would definitely challenge this view. So, how complex is any new pickup? Just the bling alone is a nightmare.

        Drive around during the day. How many pickups are there towing? This is when the bulk of pickups are “working” while the rest are sitting in parking lots with the owners working. Not many, even most are empty with one driver.

        $38k for a lot of vehicle??? Just go to McDonalds and upsize your meal, that’s value as well. Really? More pounds of vehicle per dollar?? Wow.

        Safety?? The US has only recently cottoned on to the idea of making safe pickups! Read the data. US pickups had to become safer. There are plenty of links that describe the actual carnage they caused, not only to others but the owners of pickups.

        Off roading in a full size?? WTF??. Have you ever been off roading??

        We buy pickups because we can. Have a look at the nations that have pickups as major daily drivers. US, Canada, Australia, New Zealand. Do you see a common thread here?

        There are a number of similarities between these nations.

        1. All are ex British Colonies

        2. All had very similar cultures and agri industries, manufacturing industries, etc.

        3. All have road infrastructure to manage larger vehicles.

        4. All are affluent enough to afford to operate vehicles that cost nearly twice as much per mile/kilometre to own as a family car.

        5. All were not totally devastated by WWII, hence we had enough wealth to develop a pickup/ute culture to operate these expensive vehicles.

        6. All are not heavily taxed as many other nations, which equates to overall cheaper fuel costs.

        Your comments are one of those subjective, illogical ones.

        As I stated we own and operate pickups because we can. I have never stated they are of no use. But most do not use the capabilities offered by them. We don’t use a pickup nowhere’s near it potential to earn us a living. They are toys and wants. Even the majority of what they tow are toys.

        They are big cars to most and a middle class status symbol. Sort of putting you thumb up your nose to all.

        Don’t forget I have owned many pickups. Originally they were for work. Now they are just a toy and I can justify my pickup because I own a trailer that can carry 6 600lbs. But how often have I used it?? Very little, it would actually be cheaper to have what ever business I’m purchasing whatever from deliver my item.

        I actually did that last year when I bought my fridge. It cost $30 to be delivered, they even put it in the kitchen and plugged it in! All for $30.

        The biggest load I ever towed with it was behind my XJ Cherokee, not one of my pickups.

        Again, most buy pickups as a car, hence the mid and high end model numbers that are sold.

        75% of pickups owned are wants and not a necessity for our survival.

        Don’t get me wrong I love pickups. But I own one because I can afford to pay to operate and maintain it. I don’t need one or need to come up with fanciful ideals like you had for owning one.

        They are expensive to own and operate. But I like off roading, fishing and camping. That’s my justification to own my fully blinged out, leather toy.

        • 0 avatar
          Kenmore

          “It only cements my comment.”

          When has any comment of yours needed additional cement?

          • 0 avatar
            NMGOM

            Kenmore – – –

            Well, I see that I unknowingly got sucked into the “Big Al from Oz” vacuum cleaner. “Trolling” is putting it mildly. Does he consider everything subjective so as to ignore solid information by throwing up smoke screens of irrelevant gibberish? Should I even bother responding to his comments in the future?

            TTAC community? Anyone?

            =====================

          • 0 avatar
            Lou_BC

            NMGOM, Kenmore – He is a waste of time.

            The problem is that I do not think he is deliberately trolling, I think that he is an arrogant soul that believes that his views are correct and superior to ours.

            Yup – Send all full sized pickups to the crusher and let them eat cake um er small trucks with no room inside and small diesels that in 90% of applications aren’t a good choice.
            Oh and set high minimum wages, let all car companies go bankrupt, open markets to complete free trade, but socialize health and welfare. Oh and don’t let companies sell 700 hp add on engine kits and outlaw anything deemed unsafe to the populace by him.

            Oh and if you do buy anything powerful and more capable or larger than what you really need then you need to legally post your penis size on the door of your vehicle.

            Did I miss any other BAFOonisms?

    • 0 avatar
      kuman

      Hence Honda tries to sell em some Rigdeline… if it uses the same v6 engine that runs the entire honda lineup… it wont be that hard to see some riced version of it with nitros and turbos, too bad it mostly FWD… but no matter, the tuners will figure out how to make it RWD.

      Bisimoto 1000 HP Ridgeline could be a reality…

      Hey, thet did a minivan…

      http://www.speedhunters.com/2014/02/burnouts-for-family-1029hp-minivan/

  • avatar
    Jeff S

    I can see where a van would work better for most businesses than a pickup. It is easier to get a plain windowless van than a plain pickup. I have seen a lot more Ford Transit and Ram Promaster vans in use by businesses than in the past. The pickup has become more like a full size rear wheel drive luxury car and fewer are used in business. Pickups have become more regulated and more stringent fuel economy standards and safety standards due mainly to popularity with individual consumers and less business. The popularity of pickups have the increased attention of the regulators.

  • avatar
    Jimal

    When I was last in the market for a new vehicle, I prided out a base model Ram short bed, 2wd with the 5.9 Hemi; a stripper model in the great Mopar tradition. Ultimately I just couldn’t get around the sheer size of these modern full size trucks. Ended up leasing a Jetta and buying an old pickup to use on the weekends. The lease is up on the Jetta soon. Maybe I should revisit the whole base model Ram thing.

    • 0 avatar
      Lou_BC

      You mean 5.7 and that “hemi” was based upon a Porsche design.

      “Early in the research phase, they discovered a combustion chamber that Porsche used for 1965-97 air-cooled 911s offered the ideal starting point for their new design. ”

      http://www.automobilemag.com/news/hemi-engine/

      The regular cab 4×2 Ram with 5.7 is a good deal and probably the cheapest vehicle to get with a V8.

      • 0 avatar
        JimZ

        that article is a surprisingly poor piece from something calling it self a car magazine. the only similarity I see between the 5.7 Hemi and Porsche’s air cooled heads is the twin spark plugs.

        • 0 avatar
          Lou_BC

          @JimZ – they based the story on what they were told by Chrysler engineers.

        • 0 avatar
          Vulpine

          “the only similarity I see between the 5.7 Hemi and Porsche’s air cooled heads is the twin spark plugs.”

          Does that mean my Ford Ranger’s 2.3L I-4 is a Hemi or a Porsche engine because it has two spark plugs per cylinder?

          The similarity comes from the source, not the end product. I’ll admit I don’t remember the specifics but I do know that “Hemi” came from the semi-hemispherical piston shape that increased compression significantly over the then-common flat piston design without having to increase piston travel or mill down the heads. Chrysler made it famous with its big V8s but I’m not at all surprised that it came from a Porsche design that gave a flat four more torque and higher horsepower. Two plugs per cylinder is NOT what made it a “Hemi”.

          • 0 avatar
            Lou_BC

            The starting point for Chrysler’s current “hem” was an air cooled Porsche not their own prior ‘hemi’s”.

            It doesn’t need to be exactly the same design. That is the design heritage of the current “hemi” engine. They wanted a “hemi” to tap into corporate heritage.

            The great unwashed like the tie in to the Chrysler “hemi’s” of old. Fans still talk about the fact that top fuel uses “hemi” elephant block architecture. They either do not know or conveniently leave out the fact that there are superior designs out their but NHRA rules restrict the design.

      • 0 avatar
        ajla

        “You mean 5.7 and that “hemi” was based upon a Porsche design.”

        You bring this up a lot for some reason and I don’t understand why. Do you consider it a black mark against the current engine that the combustion chamber was inspired by an old Porsche design? The air-cooled Porsche engines have a pretty strong and loyal following so it doesn’t hurt my feelings to know that the engine in my POS Charger has some relation to it.

        I don’t know what Mopar owners believe up in Canada, but around here *zero* people think that the current “Hemi” family shares much more than a name with the old 60s engine. Does the marketing bother you that much? How much does the giving “5.0” badge on the current Mustang relate to the old one affixed to the Fox bodies?

        • 0 avatar
          Lou_BC

          @ajla – I was just clarifying and thought that adding that information would open up discussion. I’ve run across people who think 5.7 , 6.2, 6.4 “hemi’s” ARE directly related to Chrysler’s famous hemi engine. Remember those “That thing got a Hemi?” commercials? They were meant to link the Ram truck engine to Chrysler’s heritage.

          It appears that you were the one offended. It wasn’t my intent.

    • 0 avatar
      Jagboi

      The hemi isn’t a particularly good combustion chamber design. It needs more octane for a given compression ratio than other designs. Generally likes to run richer than optimum too. It’s old, was used right after WW1 in motorcycles long before Porsche and Jaguar also used it the XK engine from 1948 onward.

  • avatar
    NoGoYo

    I wish you could still get a truck with black plain steelies and dog dishes.

    Instead you get hideous modern steelies with lots of holes in them or just el cheapo five-spokes.

    • 0 avatar
      highdesertcat

      That’s probably because there are just a couple of suppliers that still make steelies, and they supply all the OEMs, to order, including the police pkg vehicles.

      • 0 avatar
        NoGoYo

        So that’s why the “five spoke steelie with a chromed center cap” is fitted to everything from Malibus(???) to Dodge Rams.

        • 0 avatar
          highdesertcat

          That would be my guess.

          The recession of 2009 hit the industry and the suppliers hard. There was quite a bit of consolidation of suppliers and some suppliers that were not “assimilated” by the financially stronger ones, went under.

          You can still get steelies on the lowest trim level but many higher-level trim packages include cast alloy wheels – lighter, more stylish, and greater margin for the dealer than steelies.

          If you really want some steelies, junk yards usually keep them around.

          I bought four 17″ steelies for the 2012 Jeep Grand Cherokee we used to own to mount Blizzak winter tires on. The wheels cost me $25 a piece, no tax, cash and carry, at a local junk yard.

          Bolt pattern and offset matter. If you can’t find them at your local junk yard, Tire Rack is another outlet for universal bolt pattern steelies.

          • 0 avatar
            Lou_BC

            There are sites on the web that list bolt patterns and offset.
            Some wheels have a huge range of interchange.
            Example – 4.5 x 5 bolt pattern. That is used on Sienna and Grand Caravan. Also on some Jeeps, Ford Ranger 4×4,and Ford large cars.

            The problem now lies in the USA’s mandate requiring TPMS. Tire pressure sensors are pricy at the OEM level and even “jobbers” aren’t cheep.

            In Canada they are not mandatory but many dealerships and tire shops will try to tell you they are.

          • 0 avatar
            Scoutdude

            @ Lou, those sites also often include center bore diameters which are critical in ensuring that a wheel will fit a vehicle. Take that 5 on 4.5″ pattern that is so common. Ford has used it on the Fusion, Escape, Crown Victoria, Mustang, Ranger and Explorer. However the center bore for Fusion and Escape is smaller than it is for the Mustang and Crown Victoria. So even though the bolt pattern is the same and the offset is within acceptable limits I can’t put wheels from my wife’s Fusion on my Crown Vic. I could put the Crown Vic wheels on the Fusion though.

            When I got a set of take off wheels to mount winter tires for my cars that have TPMS I spent only about $100 for the set of 4 for the one car and $120 for the set of 5 for the other car. One set was from Napa and the other from Ebay. Now whether the wheel is compatible with the sensor is another question. With the stem mount sensors the wheel profile in the area near the hole is important. With the band mount sensors there are fewer issues but you’ll need a set of bands if they wheels don’t come with them because you bought them used.

          • 0 avatar
            Lou_BC

            Scoutdude – good points. One must watch centre bore and bolt pattern as well as rim offset.

            I got caught once with my 1st Ford Ranger. I wanted winter tires so grabbed a bunch of spare rims I had for my ’68 Galaxie. They wouldn’t clear the locking hub. I rummaged through a pile of rims a buddy had and was able to find 2 that would clear the hub.

            I was told that one needs to watch out for the type of lug nut. Ford changed HD rim style for bolts (can’t remember year) and older lug nuts won’t stay tight on those rims.

          • 0 avatar
            Scoutdude

            @Lou, yes when Ford switched to the metric pattern for the Super Duty they switched to the common for heavy duty hub centric set up. So the lug nuts have attached washers that clamp the wheel rather than tapered nuts that have been common for years. They have also done it on some cars. For example the Lincoln LS used hub centric lugs even though they used the same pattern and center bore as used on the Taurus and some other vehicles. So when I put the LS wheels on our Windstar I had to use the LS lug nuts. With those types of wheels the center bore is the only thing that centers the wheel on the hub so it is critical that they match.

            Regarding the Rangers my mother in law has an older 2wd that came with 14″ wheels and 225/70 tires. The last time it came to replace them we found that those tires are getting extinct. So I had a set of wheels from my 92 Crown Vic. The CV hub bore is larger so they work and I put those on and some 205/70 which have the same diameter and sufficient weight capacity.

          • 0 avatar
            Big Al from Oz

            Scoutdude,
            Don’t get me wrong here.

            I do believe the tapered nut is the better of the options, especially with steel rims.

            Using the shank of the stud to support the rim and a washer tells me that is has been adopted due to the use of alloys in the rim construction.

            The tapered nut offers more support than the load being transferred across the stud shank.

            Remember the load is rotational and axial more than thrust/lateral.

            The changes would be driven primarily by the change in rim material. I don’t believe it will provide more support.

            Will it work, yeah.

          • 0 avatar
            Scoutdude

            @ Al, the hub centric design was first common on MD and HD trucks in the US. Though in those applications they are known as hub piloted and lug piloted. With the hub centric/ hub piloted design the load of the vehicle is directly transferred to the hub by that interface and the stud and nut only need to provide the clamping force.

            Of course the reality is that many modern vehicles are hub centric (at least with factory wheels) and still use those tapered nuts.

            One of the factors for moving to that design on the big trucks was for the dual wheel applications. It is much simpler to have a wheel that is flat on both sides instead of needing the taper on both sides, alignment dowels, thimbles, clamping rings and that whole mess.

            The hub pilot method is cheaper and easier to service than the other methods of aligning inners.

            So on the Super Duty Ford apparently decided they wanted to go that way and then in becomes simpler and cheaper to have the same set up for single and dual wheel vehicles. So cost savings are certainly a consideration.

            As far as being driven by wheel material that is not a consideration they started on good old steel wheels on MD and HD trucks and on the Super Duty that same system is used with the steel and aluminum wheels. Part of that is again driven by the need for one size fits all. The truck with the optional aluminum wheels will have a steel spare and you don’t want to have a 5th set of lugs just for the spare. Inevitably some people would loose them and would then be stuck if they got a flat. Personally I wouldn’t though because I come from the days of the early aluminum “mag” wheels with their special shank lug nuts and the need to have that set of original lugs for the spare.

          • 0 avatar
            Lou_BC

            Scoutdude – I can see the benefit of a hub centric design.
            I often helped my dad change flats on his R600 Mack and it was a pain in the ass. Especially the inside dual. It basically was pressed into place by a spacer between the wheels and the outside wheel anchored it.
            You had the five spokes of the hub and L shaped shim like wedge that went over the lug and then you had to tighten down the nut pushing the wedge into the rim and hub spoke. You had to get it right or you’d have a wobbly wheel and/or the wheel would get loose on you. I wish I could find a picture of it since it is hard to explain.
            I can’t recall if his B model Macks had the same system.
            https://www.heavytruckparts.net/detailview.php?partnum=24458312&vendor=1821960&store=6&searchnum=3

      • 0 avatar
        Scoutdude

        There have only been a couple of suppliers for steel wheels going back decades. Since the 70’s for US produced vehicles it has been down to Kelsey Hayes and Firestone.

    • 0 avatar
      Kenmore

      “I wish you could still get a truck with black plain steelies and dog dishes.”

      Balthasar! This youth! He is one of the Chosen!

  • avatar
    Drzhivago138

    Even a lot of fleet F-150s are SuperCab/6.5′ beds (the drivers find 1.5′ of dry cargo space more useful than 1.5′ of bed), and in MN none are 4×2.

    At my local Ford dealer, though, there’s always at least 3 regular cab Super Duty trucks (usually 2 XL and one nicely-equipped XLT).


    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.”

    That’s because they’ve never been offered. Highest trim level for a regular cab in /any/ brand is the mid-range trim (Ford XLT, Ram SLT, Chevy LT, GMC SLE, Toyota SR5 up to 2014). Ford made a few Lariat regular cab F-150s back in 1997-98 (with either leather buckets or a bench), but nobody bought them.

    Did this article really come to any conclusions beyond “consumer tastes have changed since [insert year here]”?

    • 0 avatar
      Lou_BC

      @Drzhivago138 – agreed. My local dealers usually has a few base model trucks around. Rarely 4×2. They have a few extended cab trucks in various trims. Most of them are mid spec crew cab 4×4’s and probably a 1/4 are high end.
      Regular cab trucks have always been the domain of the workman. Car companies realized that by adding two doors and an extra row of seats, the workman’s truck would turn into the ubiquitous vehicle that it now is and put one in almost everyone’s driveway.

      A full sized crew cab 4×4 truck is hard to beat for versatility, performance and price. That is why they are so popular.

  • avatar
    JustPassinThru

    These trucks are no longer work vehicles – any more than a Cadillac or BMW is “transportation.”

    These are…something else. Individuals who want work vehicles look for barn finds or other babied old cars. Fleet buyers buy what they figure will hold their value – even if it’s not what they really need. The way Domino’s once bought compact pickups to deliver pizzas with.

    So, the basic work TRUCK is lost in the clamor and noise and irrational enthusiasm for lifted, crew-cab Bro-Dozers. Will dealers offer Truk-Nutz, installed?

    • 0 avatar
      Vulpine

      “These are…something else. Individuals who want work vehicles look for barn finds or other babied old cars. Fleet buyers buy what they figure will hold their value – even if it’s not what they really need. The way Domino’s once bought compact pickups to deliver pizzas with.”

      I’m going to argue one point there and that is that most fleet buyer do NOT buy what they think will hold their value, unless you’re talking rental agencies. Somebody like a pizza delivery service, pest control, HVAC or other tends to buy the cheapest they can find that meets their minimum need. By no means is Dominos playing with that new, highly-advertised car because it will ‘hold its value.’ Such fleet vehicles are going to get beaten into the ground and when you consider the number of different drivers said service may have operating that vehicle over its lifetime, the chances of any retained value is very, very low. If they retain any value it’s because they were already so cheap that they can’t get much worse. Those compact pickups worked for them because they were among the lightest ‘cars’ available and dirt cheap at the time–cheaper than most cars, even.

      • 0 avatar
        DenverMike

        Regular cabs were brutally taken away, thanks to fleets and cheapskates overly using them as gofer/commuter cars, instead of compacts and hatches they could be using, at a similar price, except they’re much cheaper to build, than pickup truck, loss leaders.

        • 0 avatar
          JustPassinThru

          “Regular cabs were brutally taken away…”

          Actually, they’re not more expensive to build.

          I’m old enough to remember when pickup trucks were WORK vehicles – and CHEAPER to buy than cars. As for the cost, the price of building an economy car, a luxury, and a truck, luxury or economy, is remarkably similar. Additional costs are in development, not manufacture – and done for the higher potential profit.

          The one thing that adds cost, is LACK of VOLUME. If you make a one-off vehicle it will cost millions, for that single unit. If the production run is 20,000, the millions are spread over that 20,000 number.

          If you sell 200,000 thousands, the per-unit cost drops dramatically. Economies of scale, it’s called.

          We don’t have bare-bones three-place trucks now because there’s so much more profit in building bro-dozers with four doors.

          • 0 avatar
            RobertRyan

            @Just passing through
            They are primarily not work vehicles anymore in the US. A replacement for the old station wagons

      • 0 avatar
        JustPassinThru

        I can’t speak for every fleet buyer. But Domino’s went from buying Chevettes to buying the then-hot S10 pickups. Chevettes were still around in those days; for two-thirds the cost. Small pickups were hot then. Why would they do that, unless they were thinking of resale value after two years of hard-fleet use by teenagers?

        (Of course Domino’s found a cheaper way – pay the kids mileage and let them use their own jalopies. Magnetic rooftop signs, with fluorescent lighting, meant little loss in advertising. But that’s off-topic…)

        • 0 avatar
          DenverMike

          If midsize regular cabs were profitable, we’d still have them. They were supposed lure buyers in, as with any Dollar Menu loss leader, and hook them on a extra cab or greater. Too good a deal though, and too many takers, only there for the regular cab stripper and nothing else, no way, no how. And not any luxo pickups to subsidize them.

          Compact fwd cars/hatches are way cheaper for the factory to spit out. No comparison.

          • 0 avatar
            JustPassinThru

            “Compact fwd cars/hatches are way cheaper for the factory to spit out. No comparison.”

            How do you arrive at that?

          • 0 avatar
            DenverMike

            Stamped steel fwd unibodies? Compared to body/frame pickups with longitudinal layout? Do you really have to ask? Compact strippers have little variance with their ‘loaded’ Si, GT-S, FST versions and still share the platform, drivetrain interworkings, HVAC, etc, with various other compact cars/CUVs/minivans/cubes/etc within the brand or group, often the assembly line too.

          • 0 avatar
            RobertRyan

            @Just passing through,
            It would be a mystery how he came up with that. Guessing on his part

  • avatar
    JustPassinThru

    So, you think intricate engineering of strong-yet-lightweight unibodies, and miniaturized transmission components and transaxles, and sound deadening and crumple-zones and analysis of stress points to preserve passenger-space integrity in crashes…all that is CHEAPER than building a truck like they built trucks seventy years ago, with ladder frames and raw BULK?

    • 0 avatar
      RobertRyan

      @JustiPassinThough
      If Denvermike, thinks there is a ” SAE Payload” I doubt he has a clue about much Automotive.processes Must be the
      Smog, it affected his brain.

    • 0 avatar
      DenverMike

      Unibodies are far from hi tech, their amazing strength comes from the egg concept, not technical advancement. Having a frame under the body, hardly takes everything back to the FDR Administration. It does slow down the assembly process exponentially, and every model has it’s own dedicated frame. 4wd? Different frame. Manual trans? Also different frame. V6? Different frame. Extra cab? Dual cab? Long bed? Diesel? Every combination takes a different frame, even if the wheelbase is shared.

      Each with its own crash test, engineering, emissions, payload, towing, mpg, etc.

      But that’s not all. With pickups there’s virtually endless combinations of trim/options/axle ratios/packages/cabs/beds/etc.

      There’s tons more at stake with pickups vs cheap fwds, fleet/cheapskate strippers or otherwise. But midsize base, regular cabs were almost too good to be true. They couldn’t sustain indefinitely.

  • avatar
    JustPassinThru

    The expense in engineering the K cars drove Chrysler to the brink of bankruptcy. Ford took a pass, trying to make the Panther do for another ten years – until Hank the Deuce retired and the Taurus program could be put through.

    Taurus PROGRAM. K-car putting Chrysler on the edge of BANKRUPTCY. GM, flubbing their X-cars and derivatives; having quality-control problems for fifteen YEARS. That was not typical of the General – until then.

    They are neither easy nor cheap to design. Assembly is no cheaper; but engineering costs have to be factored in sales revenue, also.

    Trucks, by comparison…GM redesigned their pickups four times in the last twenty years. Always, body-on-frame…same-old same-old. Had they chosen to, they could have stuck with the THC three-speed; but transmission advances were coming out and they wanted to be competitive.

    But there’s nothing there that hasn’t been done before; and easily; and with minimal tampering.

    AMC, too…could not even afford to CONSIDER designing a FWD small car. And when they wound up owned by Renault…just MODIFYING the Renault car for American assembly and sale cost so much that AMC/Renault lost money on every Alliance/Encore sold.

    Jeeps, by comparison…all but the XJ being traditional…the money they MADE kept all the unprofitable cars, AMC’s and Renault’s, coming off the lines from 1979 to 1987.

    • 0 avatar
      DenverMike

      The K-car was to Chrysler, like the US putting a man on the Moon. Kind of a bad example, the K-car, and starting from nothing. A billion dollar investment no less, backed by the US. But they were never on the brink of bankruptcy during development or after they K-cars hit showrooms. Chrysler broke even at about their millionth K-car, about 3 years in. The rest was pure profits.

      That’s a little different than established compact FWDs, sharing the platform with several other cars/CUVs/wagons/cubes/etc, including drivetrains, components, interworkings, across the brand/group, AND selling for about the same price as midsize, regular-cab strippers, only (rarely) sharing the platform with a midsize SUV, but for the most part, share about nothing with cars within the brand/group.

      There’s a lot more that goes into pickups than most realize since they’re so crude on the surface. They truly have to sell millions upon million of units between “all-new” generations, often a decade plus apart, since profits are so thin without tremendous volume.

      Compact cars sometimes get all-new generation every 4 years.

      • 0 avatar
        Vulpine

        Then why are pickups always, ALWAYS, listed as their most profitable models?

        • 0 avatar
          DenverMike

          Somebody had to be “losing their shirt”, or that’s what it seemed like. Look at all you got for the price of a stripper, regular-cab Tacoma, Ranger, Frontier, Colorado, etc.

          Then could you suffer living with a Corolla or Focus for the same price??

          Not all pickups are profitable, let alone *wildly* profitable, such as Ram, GM and Ford fullsize. And regular-cab strippers are at the bottom of any “pickup truck, totem pole”.

  • avatar
    st1100boy

    I saw a super low end regular cab, 4X2, long bed F150 on Saturday morning. It looked great with its silver steelies and painted bumpers. What a truck should be. Not that I ever have owned a truck, nor am I likely to.

    Just for fun, I went on the Ford website and built a truck “my way”: 4X2, long bed, extended cab, 2.7 turbo, dual tanks, power windows/locks, cruise, in Caribou brown. Within a stone’s throw of $35K before rebates. Wow.

    At that price, I’ll rent a truck when needed and tow my Super Duke to trackdays with the car.

    • 0 avatar
      DenverMike

      If you don’t need the truck, half of that would be too much. But at full price, I’d call it a decent value. With full rebates? A tremendous value.

      • 0 avatar
        Vulpine

        I certainly need a truck; I just don’t need that MUCH truck. By no means is that “a decent value” unless you truly need that much truck. And at half the price, it’s still too much truck for me. But I DO need a truck.

        • 0 avatar
          DenverMike

          OK, try this: Let someone else buy it. And try not being harmed by everything you don’t like.

          • 0 avatar
            Vulpine

            “OK, try this: Let someone else buy it. And try not being harmed by everything you don’t like.”

            It has to be built before someone can buy it. If a true compact truck is built, I am perfectly willing to buy one new–even trade my new/old Ranger for it.

          • 0 avatar
            DenverMike

            We all know your plight, sad story, and even offered solutions, including psycho therapy, but it’s out of our hands.

            Good luck.

          • 0 avatar
            Vulpine

            I wouldn’t consider it a plight, I have pretty much what I want. Your plight is that you’re being proven wrong with nearly every statement you make.

            Hey, I have a truck that is effectively half the size of today’s full-sized trucks and very visibly smaller than even today’s mid-sized trucks. On top of all that, it even gets better fuel mileage and has less than 25K miles on the clock–despite being 19 years old.

      • 0 avatar
        NMGOM

        Denver – – –

        There is no such thing as a truck the ISN”T a “decent value” (in the big picture) at almost any price.
        But then again, I’m prejudiced…(^_^)…

        Twelve reason why (like the Twelve Apostles, for those who “can hear”) – – –

        1) Practicality: they can haul and tow anytime you need it, and pass the cow-manure test;

        2) Reliability: they have been among the most reliable vehicles ever made: check “Consumer Reports”;

        3) Ease and minimal cost of repair: simple structure and design mean fewer expensive problems;

        4) Height and ground clearance: better vision in traffic; better deep snow accommodation in winter;

        5) Less expensive to purchase per volume for modest, basic models: about $38K for a LOT of vehicle;

        6) Endurance: ave. car life = 11.7 years; ave. pickup life = 15.2 years of ownership;

        7) Body-on-Frame: the tough structure of this frame method is undisputed for long-term strength;

        8) Rust resistance: being higher off winter’s salty water means less brine splashing into critical areas;

        9) Safety: collision survivability in pickups is better than the average sedan: check NHTSA crash data;

        10) Traction: off-road, or on-road in inclement weather, its hard to beat a balanced, 4WD pickup.

        11) Upright seating: Folks have gotten tried of lay-down driving positions in econobox sedans.

        12) Live Rear Axle: durable, solid, simple, robust, tough, no stupid “multi-links”!

        How can you beat that deal at any price? Perhaps that is what America has discovered….

        ==============

        • 0 avatar
          30-mile fetch

          Good grief, some of you truck acolytes can be insufferable. No $40K 16mpg vehicle is a good deal if you don’t want or desire the particular capabilities it has. If you need a truck, you need a truck and nothing else will do. Fine. If you want a truck and are less concerned about cost, then nothing else will do and that’s fine as well.

          Some of us don’t need ’em, and some of us certainly don’t want ’em. A contrived evangelical list of reasons that trucks are cheaper, more comfortable, and necessary to everyone is not going to change that. Get off my porch, evangelist, if I want to join your church I know where to find it.

          • 0 avatar
            NMGOM

            30-mile fetch – – –

            Thanks. I enjoyed your comment. But I did tell you ahead of time I was prejudiced. Didn’t realize I was “insufferable”, though.

            Ok, I’ll get off your porch now. Have a good day (^_^)…

            (…and when you are driving around in an econobox, that pathetic excuse for a vehicle nowadays, I’ll be happy to pull you out of a ditch a Wisconsin winter…)

            ===============

          • 0 avatar
            30-mile fetch

            “(…and when you are driving around in an econobox, that pathetic excuse for a vehicle nowadays, I’ll be happy to pull you out of a ditch a Wisconsin winter…)”

            You didn’t know you were being insufferable because it appears to be second nature.

            Your comment is amusing though, because you claim above that trucks are superior because of the low cost per volume, which is the ultimate Big Mac argument. Trucks are just big econoboxes, then? And bigger is better. My 4-year old also likes to establish hierarchy based on size, but I know he’ll grow up one day.

            Anyway, be sure to pull the other 4×4 BOF vehicles out of the ditch first, because those clearly superior vehicles make up the majority of winter rollovers and slideoffs in my area.

          • 0 avatar
            NMGOM

            30-mile fetch – – –

            In my 12 years of commuting about 10 miles one way in the ice, snow, and winds of brutal WI winters during the late 1980’s and 1990’s, there were ALWAYS two types of vehicles that went off the road first:
            1) Small FWD econoboxes, whose drivers were often seen standing next to their vehicles scratching what passes for their heads, wondering what had happened;
            2) Large AWD SUV’s (like Suburbans), whose drivers thought they were immortal, sensed nothing, and forgot the laws of physics. They were scratching too, but not necessarily their heads (^_^)….

            It was actually RWD pickups, and the larger old RWD sedans or big old station wagons that DID NOT go off the road as frequently, because their drivers were made aware of slippery conditions by the onset of “fishtailing” in their vehicles, — and they would just SLOW DOWN. (Not a bad idea….)

            In other words, the RWD systems were the “canary in the gold mine” that became the tell-tale for traction hazards, something that is masked by modern FWD/AWD set-ups: you simply don’t know what’s going on “down there”.

            I should note that I have been driving for 54 years, and have experienced just about every type of condition, so I have some evidence-based conclusions in this matter.

            =========================

          • 0 avatar
            30-mile fetch

            You’re killing me. The two most common vehicles you’ve seen off the roads 20-30 years ago were econoboxes and 4×4 trucks/SUVs, the slideoffs in both cases diagnosed as driver error and the prescription in both cases is simply slowing down to avoid traction loss. Yet the econoboxes and their drivers are the target of your criticism in prior comments…

          • 0 avatar
            NMGOM

            30-mile fetch – – –

            Don’t mean to “kill you”, but you are missing my point: the reason FWD econoboxes did not slow down is that their drivers SENSED no reason to do so. The drivers of RWD vehicles did.

            Hope you are able to recover…(^_^)

            =======================

          • 0 avatar
            Lou_BC

            NMGOM has a valid point in relation to 4×2 winter driving. That is one of the reasons I will only use 4×4 in truly extreme conditions. The tail getting light at lower speeds ensures I will slow down and drive much more cautiously.
            Another reason is the fact that I used to spend a considerable amount of my free time in remote areas. The same logic applies. You get stuck in 4×2 mode and it isn’t too bad. You get stuck in 4×4 and you are screwed.

          • 0 avatar
            NMGOM

            Lou_BC – – –

            “Another reason is the fact that I used to spend a considerable amount of my free time in remote areas. The same logic applies. You get stuck in 4×2 mode and it isn’t too bad. You get stuck in 4×4 and you are screwed.”

            Exactly. I do off-roading in my 2007 Jeep Wrangler. Standard rule-of-thumb for going into unknown areas without club participation (usually a bad idea): “2-wheel IN; 4-wheel OUT”.

            In other words, if you get stuck or in really difficult situations with 2WD while you are ALONE, then that is the time to stop, find an alternative route, or just plain go home. You can push on with 4WD, and if you have a winch to help, fine; but it’s still a huge gamble. Winches are not the cure-all / end-all that some may think, as they require secure anchor points, which are not always easily available. Save the 4WD as your escape option. The same applies to 4WD trucks…

            ==========================

        • 0 avatar
          heavy handle

          NMGOM,

          You may want to revisit your “trucks don’t rust” opinion. No what I’ve observed.

          I also disagree with your snow traction claim. While it may be true when you are trying to muscle yourself out of a ditch, there’s a reason why pickups are more likely to be in the ditch in the first place.

          As far as repair costs are concerned, the techs I know who specialize in pickups are doing very well. I’ve heard the opinion that pickup owners think that expensive maintenance is a badge of honor: “my truck is so tough, it chews through a set of brakes every year!”

          • 0 avatar
            NMGOM

            heavy handle – – –

            Thanks for the response.

            1) Yes, there was a period before about 1995 when trucks (and other vehicles) did not have high-nickel steels and would rust terribly. And you may see a lot of rusty trucks around because people kept them longer. But my comment was meant for “all-else-equal” of course: given a constant steel composition, a higher vehicle suffers less exposure to salt brine, and hence less corrosion. (That applies to aluminum too, which WILL corrode under those conditions – unlike what Ford may allege.)

            2) While I’m sure your anecdote is valid, check actual data: repair rates from Consumer Reports (or others). Simple trucks are much lower; and the repairs that do occur are easier and less expensive to fix. (BTW: I have NEVER replaced my rear brakes on my 1996 Dodge Ram, and it is 20 years sold with ~190,000 miles. I did the front brakes only once. Depends on how you drive; and if you have a manual transmission with which to do downshifts to scrub speed…)

            ======================

        • 0 avatar
          Vulpine

          @NMGOM:
          1) Practicality: they can haul and tow anytime you need it, and pass the cow-manure test;
          — They don’t have to be big to be practical.
          2) Reliability: they have been among the most reliable vehicles ever made: check “Consumer Reports”;
          — They don’t have to be big to be reliable.
          3) Ease and minimal cost of repair: simple structure and design mean fewer expensive problems;
          — False. Today’s trucks are far more complex and not cheap to repair compared to some other vehicles.
          4) Height and ground clearance: better vision in traffic; better deep snow accommodation in winter;
          — Not necessarily. Vision is worthless when you can’t maneuver.
          5) Less expensive to purchase per volume for modest, basic models: about $38K for a LOT of vehicle;
          — False. Per volume they’re among the most expensive vehicles to purchase, with even the cheapest ones more expensive than a sedan or crossover with similar passenger capacity. Their only advantage there is the open bed.
          6) Endurance: ave. car life = 11.7 years; ave. pickup life = 15.2 years of ownership;
          — A figure that is gradually shifting as they are becoming too expensive to maintain.
          7) Body-on-Frame: the tough structure of this frame method is undisputed for long-term strength;
          — Marginal. Many “space frame” (unibody) vehicles show similar toughness in long-term strength even at over 30 years old
          8) Rust resistance: being higher off winter’s salty water means less brine splashing into critical areas;
          — False. Pickups are notorious for body rust perforation around the wheel wells and other locations long before most cars. Only pickup trucks go so far as to have replacement body panels and partial panels available to repair rust.
          9) Safety: collision survivability in pickups is better than the average sedan: check NHTSA crash data;
          — Half true. In a collision with another vehicle that is true, but in single-car crashes the pickup leads in fatalities.
          10) Traction: off-road, or on-road in inclement weather, its hard to beat a balanced, 4WD pickup.
          — False. While higher ground clearance gives them some advantage off-road, they are abysmal at on-road handling even in 4×4 mode because of their unloaded rear axle. Pickups tend to be no less susceptible to spinning off road in snowy and icy conditions than any other vehicle and frequently more so as the driver forgets to load the bed and shift balance.
          11) Upright seating: Folks have gotten tried of lay-down driving positions in econobox sedans.
          — Half true. Crossovers outnumber “econobox sedans” by a significant number and the majority of them provide upright seating.
          12) Live Rear Axle: durable, solid, simple, robust, tough, no stupid “multi-links”!
          — False. The live axle tends to make handling more difficult, especially in adverse conditions, though admittedly can carry more weight under current designs.

          How can you beat the deal? Make ’em smaller. Bring in newer 4×4 and AWD technologies.

          (…and when you are driving around in an econobox, that pathetic excuse for a vehicle nowadays, I’ll be happy to pull you out of a ditch a Wisconsin winter…)
          — That one’s really funny. My very first day at a new job in Pennsylvania, I was driving a Tennessee-tagged Chevy Camaro when a blizzard blanketed the area. It had been snowing for about 5 hours and had 5-6 inches already on the roads when we got off work. My drive home was a 30-mile run through Pennsylvania county roads and I was seeing cars and trucks (mostly trucks) in the ditch all the way. I made it home without issue, never once spinning or getting stuck, despite several relatively steep hills and crossing a bridge over a waterway at one point.

          That’s right, I wasn’t the one needing help out of the ditch, all those 4×4 pickup trucks were. To say that my new co-workers were a bit miffed at me when I showed up for work the next morning driving the Camaro would be an understatement.

          • 0 avatar
            NMGOM

            Vulpine – – –

            You may be mixing apples and oranges in your comparison comments. I mean pickups compared to sedans in any same era.

            So, let’s take “from the top” and “by the numbers”, shall we?

            1) Who said anything about the SIZE of the pickup? I own two full-size and one mid-size. They are all great.

            2) Not even relevant to my comment.

            3) Simple basic work-truck pickups can be ordered without many of the electronic do-dads that zing reliability as measured either by JD Powers or Consumer Reports. Check it yourself.

            4) Ask anyone if they would want to actually see less out of their vehicles. And what does maneuvering have to do with it? If I can see a bad traffic situation ahead of time, and apply brakes, then that’s an advantage.

            5) Per load VOLUME, not per passenger! Example:
            a) 1996 Dodge Ram with bed cap = 125 cubic feet in the box, seats 6 passengers, and was $18,900;
            b) 1996 Dodge Intrepid = $18,745; seats 5 passengers; and has 48 cubic feet in the trunk.
            You can do the math…

            6) Your projected trend is speculation. The fact is that right now, the data at hand show a larger first-ownership period for pickup trucks than for cars. I could make the inverse argument that, with advances like high-strength, corrosion resistant steels and aluminum bodies, folks will keep their pickups even longer now than before; and certainly longer than cars, which depreciate rapidly.

            7) This isn’t even worth responding to. There is nothing stronger or more durable over 20 salt-exposed years than body-on-frame designs for pickup trucks that do hauling and towing. No conventional unibody could take the punishment of towing even 10,000 lbs after corrosion sets is, and there is nothing left…

            8) As I said to “heavy handle” above:
            “Yes, there was a period before about 1995 when trucks (and other vehicles) did not have high-nickel steels and would rust terribly. And you may see a lot of rusty trucks around because people kept them longer. But my comment was meant for “all-else-equal” of course: given a constant steel composition, a higher vehicle suffers less exposure to salt brine, and hence less corrosion. (That applies to aluminum too, which WILL corrode under those conditions – unlike what Ford may allege.)”

            9) Not any more. New pickups like the Ford F-150 have NHTSA 5-star crash ratings for ALL types of accidents, and others are rapidly following. And in truck-to-car collisions, which vehicle would you rather be in?

            10) I said, a BALANCED pickup truck. With proper winter tires, a manual transmission, locking differential, and 500 lbs in the bed to get nearly a 50/50 weight distribution, there is NO comparable sedan (RWD vs FWD or 4WD vs AWD) that can match the traction of this truck in severely deep snow or mud, or in rock climbing. I couldn’t give hoot about handling, and did NOT allege that a pickup was better in that category. For your information, my Ram with heavy-duty roll-bars, Fox shocks, and stiff springs corners at ~ 0.82 g’s; the Dodge Intrepid above corners at 0.84 g’s. Is that a big difference?

            11) Nothing seats people more “upright” than a pickup truck or full-sized van (which aren’t made anymore).

            12) What is this “handling” kick you are on? It’s irrelevant for 99% of all driving. My own measurements with a vehicle in both high-speed country curves and city cornering have shown that nobody in his right mind exceeds even 0.5 g’s with ANY type of vehicle, or he will start going though tires and brakes like crazy. Performance and track drivers may be concerned about g-forces greater than 0.9, as do I when I am racing the BMW Z4 3.0si that you see in my avatar. Corvettes now get closer to 1.1 g’s. If those things matter to you, don’t get a pickup: get a sports car.

            Concerning your Chevy Camaro story: I agree, and you are making my point to “30-mile fetch” above:
            “In other words, the RWD systems were the “canary in the gold mine” that became the tell-tale for traction hazards, something that is masked by modern FWD/AWD set-ups: you simply don’t know what’s going on “down there”.

            Yes, the first cars off the road were 4WD vehicles, typically SUV’s and FWD econoboxes. Your Camaro had RWD, and so you could sense what was going on below you. My Dodge Ram is RWD.

            ======================

          • 0 avatar
            Vulpine

            “You may be mixing apples and oranges in your comparison comments. I mean pickups compared to sedans in any same era.”

            Be careful what you wish for. At one time pickups were FAR cheaper than sedans even from the same era. I bought a brand-new Oldsmobile Cutlass Supreme in 1975 that was still more expensive than the brand-new Mitsubishi Sport Pickup in 1983. On the other hand, the going price of an average Chevy Colorado today is $5K more than I would be willing to pay for any crossover-type vehicle on the road with the exception of a Tesla. In fact, my next “crossover” purchase will very likely run nearly $10k lower than that ‘average’ Colorado and I’m talking about the second-highest trim level of that crossover and still offers decent off-road chops. Just imagine what the full-sized pickup would run.

            I intend to skip a few numbers now:

            1) The overall discussion is about pickups, yes. But today’s pickups are far too large AND too expensive. Exactly which mid-sized truck do you own?

            3) You said it here; a true WORK pickup pretty much has to be ordered to find a base model; very few dealerships carry them in inventory outside of Ram from what I’ve seen. My local Chevy/GMC dealer has a lot full of trucks, not one of which is below the LT model and even those are typically LTZ as 4×4 is the standard where I live due to our winters. Maybe points farther south where snow is less likely you might find more basic models, but a quick “check inventory” couldn’t find a single “work truck” Silverado within 200 miles.

            4) Meanwhile, a little Fiat 500 has just wiggled past you (did you even see it?) and is moving right ahead through the traffic taking advantage of gaps your truck simply can’t fit into.

            5) You didn’t say “Load Volume”, you said Volume, meaning essentially enclosed space. Some crossovers offer far more interior volume than a pickup and more than half of new pickup trucks (some sources say near 80%) never see a true load in the bed while I’ve seen some pulling a ridiculously small utility trailer carrying things that would easily fit within that bed. So as far as I’m concerned, if it’s not used as a truck, it’s a car.

            6) Again you move the goal posts; you never said “First Ownership” in your earlier list. That aside, I personally know people who trade trucks every one to two years…and they use them as trucks. One item of note is that the ones who actually use their trucks are complaining how they get stuck FAR too easily in the fields compared to older models. Even the 4×4 models just wimp out on loose surfaces (and yes, they do turn off the ESC).

            7) What, again moving the goal posts? Where did you ever say a 10,000 tow in your first statement? And I’m glad YOU don’t care what your truck looks like, prior to the aluminum body Ford in particular was notorious around here for rusted bodies within 5 years. GM not much, if any better. My 8-year-old Jeep looks pristine compared to most 8-year-old pickup trucks around here. Why? Not one speck of body rust.

            8) There’s one point I will agree with; corrosion is corrosion and aluminum does corrode. It just looks differently from iron and steel corrosion because it’s white instead of red. As for the nickel-steel… that doesn’t seem to be helping the trucks in Pennsylvania all that much, as I stated above.

            9) You have verifiable data that those trucks aren’t getting into single-vehicle crashes? You have verifiable data that the passengers are surviving significantly better than their predecessors? The problem is that because passengers think they’re safer in a truck, they tend to drive more idiotically and honestly try to treat them like muscle cars. Trucks are involved in more rollover crashes and very often, at least around here, passengers are ejected. Even when they’re not, they tend to not wear seat belts and get thrown around in the cab by the G-forces of the crash.
            As for truck-to-car collisions, I didn’t dispute your point. However, I’d rather be in a vehicle that has the agility to dodge the crash in the first place, if at all possible.

            10) Ok, I didn’t see the word “Balanced” in your argument, but I’ll accept that one. Strangely however, I watch pickup trucks around here every winter and they seem to NEVER be prepared for snow, even when the blizzard is predicted three and four days in advance.
            Oh, and what’s your turning radius in that truck?

            11) Don’t say ‘Nothing’, you’d be wrong. Same thing with the full-sized van as the Ford Transit, Ram ProMaster are full-sized vans, just not conventionally styled.

            12) Handling. Turn radius in particular as that is the most obvious indicator of how well a vehicle can maneuver in tight situations. Your particular truck, as you very clearly pointed out, has a number of aftermarket gear to improve its handling, but does not really affect its agility. It’s still a whale that needs a minimum of four lanes in which to make a U-turn (where legal). I’m not concerned about G-force in making the turn, it’s very simply on how tight a turn can you make, no matter the speed. If you can’t make a sharp turn into an 10′ wide alleyway from a one-lane street, you’ve got a problem. Simply put, the truck’s size itself can be its worst enemy.

          • 0 avatar
            NMGOM

            Vulpine – – –

            “Exactly which mid-sized truck do you own?”
            2010 Nissan Frontier SE Crew Cab Longbed, manual.
            Love it.

            Can’t continue with you right now, Sorry.
            Gotta run….

            ===============

          • 0 avatar
            Vulpine

            Thumbs up on the Nissan, though it’s still bigger than I like. We drop into personal needs now as an extended cab more than meets both my needs and wants.

            The rest…? I still say most people don’t NEED a full-sized truck; it’s a status symbol more often than a working truck. My Jeep Wrangler meets most of the capabilities for bad weather driving and it’s still shorter than your Nissan. It just doesn’t have the open bed. I’m looking forward to the new rigs expected out later this year and next year… especially from Jeep but also a couple possibilities from Ram.

          • 0 avatar
            NMGOM

            Vulpine – – –

            Back to catching up on a number of salient things here:

            1) Yes, thumbs up on the Nissan Frontier. My turning radius for the crew cab/long bed = ~24 feet (23.88 feet)*. You may shorten that a bit by choosing a king cab / short bed. I can honestly recommend this truck NOW, before their redesign** sets in, and prices go up. Frontier sales have been increasing rapidly during May, as more people discover this “deal”: check the “ggodcarbadcar” website.

            2) Ironically, I too have Jeep Wrangler, a 2007 with about 60K miles: Jeep Green with soft top. Love that little guy too. Spent about 2 weeks last summer coating the entire bottom and all hardware with Ace’s Rust-Stop gloss black paint. I recommend it: it’s a pain to do with a brush, and you’ll get paint all over yourself, but it really soaks into rusted components and seems to be PERMANENT (to whatever degree anything can be permanent with vehicles…)

            3) Tell me a bit about your avatar, and why you chose it. I think it’s cool.

            ————-
            * Sometimes the overall turning circle reminds me of Red Simpson’s rendition of “Give Me 40 Acres and I’ll Turn This Rig Around”! Just joking: it’s not that bad, but you will have to watch out for tight, crowded parking lots…

            ** You know, adding the usual electro-junk, — USB ports; SATNAV; see everything-in-the-universe cameras; automatic braking assist; automatic lane-change assist; automatic nose pickers; automatic tampon extractors; etc (^_^)…

            =========================

          • 0 avatar
            Vulpine

            Let’s take that conversation private, NMGOM, it would be a distraction from the overall gist of the article. As far as new trucks, I’m looking for something to replace both my JKU Wrangler (’08 with just over 70K on it) and my 19-year-old (but relatively new to me with 23K miles on it) Ranger; standard cab, XLT. Looking for a way to combine the two without going so-called mid-sized, which is far larger than I want or need. On the other hand, if they make a Wrangler pickup with the ’05 Gladiator’s layout and only marginally larger, I might consider it. I’m also sorely tempted by the possibility of the RAM 700 with the same drivetrain as the Renegade. Not ready to commit to anything yet, but I simply don’t have space for three vehicles and honestly a full-sized truck is almost three vehicles in itself with that size and poor economy. (Yes, I do know some people need and want them, that doesn’t mean I do.)

            Look me up on roadwhale.com (no spaces) and drop me a note. Will respond by private email to your last question.

    • 0 avatar
      Drzhivago138

      That’s pretty close to mine, although I would choose 4×4 (because something that heavy should send at least some power to the front in the winter), which means I’d “have” to upgrade to the 5.0 or 3.5 EB (not sure which I’d choose). And it’d be in Blue Jeans with the $250 “two-tone” option. And the HD Payload Package, because 1998 F-250 light duty successor. That would bring MSRP up quite a bit.

  • avatar
    427Cobra

    OMG… what a riot, reading through these comments. Yes… I drive a Bro-dozer… a 2000 Super Duty supercab V10 4×4. 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 4×4… but will be lightly optioned. Definitely want the chrome grille & bumpers tho… gotta have a little bling.

    • 0 avatar
      DownUnder2014

      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!

  • avatar
    jdowmiller

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

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