Classic pickup trucks 25 or even 50 years old that are still not only on the road but also working for a living are not unusual, but one that is a Dodge rather than a Ford or Chevy is quite unusual. The Dodge D-Series of 1972-93 was an also-ran dwarfed in sales by the Ford F-Series and Chevrolet C-Series when new, and survivors from the 1970s are relatively rare several decades later. Spotting this eye-catching red and white 1972 D200 during a trip to the local auto parts store (of course it happened there) was therefore a surprise worth stopping to shoot.
The redesigned 1972 D-Series was a major step forward for Dodge’s pickup line, introducing independent front suspension that caught up with Ford’s and Chevrolet’s adaptations of the 1960s, the first extended cab with the Club Cab, and new less boxy styling with a two tone line mimicking the late-fuselage era Plymouth Satellite coupe of the same year. During the 1970s, it would provide the basis for numerous variants, from the off-road oriented Power Wagon to flamboyant lifestyle trucks such as the Warlock and Lil’ Red Truck.
This ordinary D-Series truck appeared to be a well preserved and unrestored example, used but not abused for four decades–an ideal characterful classic pickup for occasional work use. Externally, the four matching wheel covers looked almost too new and perfect, but otherwise the entire truck exuded originality. With faded two tone red and white paint that exactly matched the truck in a 1972 advertisement, minimal dents except for normal wear to the cargo bed floor, and only slight rust around the edges, it looked ready for another four decades of light duty hauling.
Inside, the basic black interior appeared to be restored, with what looked like new vinyl upholstery, but one cannot criticize wanting to sit in a clean and fresh-looking passenger compartment in a truck driven regularly.
At the pickup’s business end, the new-looking trailer hitch and standard license plate were further signs that this truck remained an honest work vehicle. Although eligible for registration as an antique for more than a decade and a half, it continues as a normally registered, unlimited use vehicle, probably hauling cargo and towing trailers all over the place. Unlike in the Pacific Northwest, we do not often see these unrestored classic pickups in everyday use in the mid-Atlantic states, so it is a moment to be enjoyed when one appears.