Another week, another sighting of a what appears to be an impeccably kept vehicle waiting to make a left turn in the same place as the Lincoln Mark VII last week. Although while this time it’s a less high-falutin’ vehicle I’d guess the current resale value of this one is far higher than that of the Lincoln, never mind that the Lincoln cost significantly more when new. And likely has required far more care and feeding in the years since.
This 1991 pickup is a bog standard 2WD regular cab model, likely with the legendary 22R engine. Odds are that it’s still with its original owner who looks to have taken great care of it. The paint-matched Brahma camper shell (and others like it) have always been a popular addition to enclose the cargo space, the mud flaps on all four corners point to a fastidious owner, and the chrome bumper still sparkles like new. The truck’s thirty years old, plenty of older/retired owners take great care of their vehicles and don’t drive them in bad weather, but how old could the owner have been when acquiring this truck? While some Toyota pickups were still being built in Japan for 1991, many were also made at NUMMI in Fremont, CA, the current Tesla plant.
There’s no greater advertisement for the longevity and toughness of Toyota trucks than the fact that any self-respecting Middle Eastern warlord runs a fleet of them, although those are generally 4WD models with far more garish side stripes than the ones this one sports. In fact the trucks were (and are) considered so good that even the United States purchased, outfitted, and used a number of them, mainly for clandestine missions.
Toyota’s done a wide variety of side stripes (as did all of the pickup makers) and it’s usually the easiest way to distinguish the specific model year, lots of squinting at fuzzy little pictures uploaded brochures established the year of this one as 1991 for me. Still, if the 4WD ones can survive years (decades?) of running around the desert with a 50-caliber mounted in the bed and what always seems to be a minimum of at least half a dozen mujahideen riding along then a 2WD in suburbia should be able to last, well, forever and a day. This doesn’t mean that I support any kind of jihad or anything else along those lines, I’m merely using it as an illustrative example – The Chevy S-10 may be “Like a Rock” and the Ranger may be “Built Ford Tough”, but I’ve not seen either dune hopping across the desert. As a point of comparison, back in 1991 the Toyota’s tagline was “I Love What You Do For Me”. What it apparently does for people is hold up very well indeed.
I purchased a one owner, 2000 Tacoma in Sept. of 2020. 176,000 miles, 4 cyl 22R, automatic and A/C. My son gave me some 17″ alloys and some new tires, along with replacing a leaking radiator are all that I’ve had to do. And I get compliments from guys all the time, even though it’s in less than pristine condition. Bumps, scrapes and scratches just seem to add to it’s character. I doubt I’ll ever need anything else.
My neighbor across the street has a clone of the featured truck, but without the shell. It’s sky blue, with the same striping, and apart from one superficial dent in the bed, looks like it just rolled off the factory line. His gets very little use, but there are probably about a dozen or more classic Toyota pickups in my subdivision in various states of being. Most are still being used as light duty work trucks.
I’ve always wanted to own one of these, or a first generation Tacoma, but they command such a huge premium that I never did.
Where the little Toyotas fail is to convey the sense of macho that the hunkin’ big new oversize trucks do…though the .50 cal. in the bed is a more than adequate substitute.
Old Hilux pickups will still be going when all the brodozer plastic rubbish has been scrapped.
On a slight tangent. When I was looking for a small, cheap, and basic 4×4 small pickup last
year, I wanted a Toyota. As mentioned, prices were rather inflated. I ended up with a ’92
Nissan D21, purchased from the original owner, a guy pushing 90 and obviously on his
last legs. As sometimes happens, what I didn’t really want turned out to be what I needed.
For hardcore off roading, the Toyota is a better vehicle, otherwise they are very similar,
at about a third of the price. Parts availability is astounding, and extremely inexpensive.
The 22R, or in my case 22RE is indeed a very tough motor.
I, however, killed one.
When my gf and I were heading to the Rockies to teach school in 1990, we bought a 1985 Toyota 4X4 long box. I loaded it to the top of the canopy and then hitched an 8′ U-Haul trailer to it.
I had never been up the Coquihalla Highway before and to make any progress, it was foot to the floor in second gear in the automatic transmission. I did this for THREE HOURS. I should have put it in low range and inched my way up.
Right after that, it started using a lot of oil for some strange reason! I had it rebuilt not long after that.
Ive had my 1994 toyota 4×4 for 20 years after getting my 1988 toyota 4×4 stolen in mexico rosarito off the beach at busstops surf spot while surfing i purchased it with 90,000 miles now have 390,000 this truck is going to last forever thank you toyota for the longevity.
Ive had my 1994 toyota 4×4 for 20 years after getting my 1988 toyota 4×4 stolen in mexico rosarito off the beach at busstops surf spot while surfing
Owned my 86 for 23 years and the 22 R still runs like a fine tuned Singer Sewing machine!
My dad bought a new 1991 4×4. Same silver color, but with a slightly different stripe. When I graduated from college in 1998 my dad wanted to sell it so he could buy a brand new T100. It had 122k on it when I bought it from him. It was my first vehicle purchase. I loved that truck. In 2003, It was totalled by a hit and run flatbed farm truck. Didn’t get a great look at it. It had 225k on it at the time. If I had the money I would have tried to salvage it, but my wife and I had just had our first child and I was working two jobs to allow her to stay home. I’ve wanted a truck like that for 18 years.
My dad put 185k on his T100 and sold it to my brother so he could get a new Tundra. My brother called me last month and asked me if I wanted to buy the T100. He had it for 6 years and put 8k miles on it. I’m now the proud owner of a 98 T100 V6 4×4 extended cab that is in outstanding condition. I’m in love again!
Just had to put a picture of my “new” truck. 😄
Una foto de mi “Guaguita”,1989,mía desde hace 25 años.
I took a look at all those old Toyota commercials on YouTube and they were AWESOME! They make me want one of these trucks now. That’s the idea of advertising right? Alas, I’ve already got enough project vehicles right now: a 2011 Ford Ranger, a 2005 Chevrolet Astro, and 4 different trailers for each of them to pull.