(first posted 6/4/2011. I offer it again as a counterpoint to yesterday’s 2019 Silverado post)
The fact that men, particularly blue collar workers, have suffered disproportionately in America’s changing economy of the past few decades is hard to argue against. And nowhere is it more apparent than in the external symbols of virility that truck manufacturers apparently feel men need in order to compensate for their reduced status, real or imagined. Fifty years ago, men were apparently secure enough in their manhood to drive what has to be the most feminine and lowest of RWD trucks ever. And today?
Need I say more?
I don’t, but this one is rather desperate to speak for itself. Shout, actually.
Although a giant chromed exhaust stack (or two) standing erect behind the cab might be called for to make sure that everyone really gets the picture.
Enough. But the all-new Ford trucks that appeared for 1961 were the lowest and sleekest trucks Ford would ever make, marking what must have been perhaps a high point in the collective male testosterone levels. Well confident and optimistic American men were riding off to space sitting on top of giant rockets, so maybe… Anyway, the new lineup included the very unusual “uni-body” Styleside version, which featured an integrated bed and cab, like a Ranchero.
I should point out here that the decision to create the “unibody” was not primarily stylistic, but to save costs. The “unibody” had a single side stamping from the door back, as well as a single stamping that separated bed from cab, instead of those being duplicated. There were fewer welds overall. It also simplified painting, as the whole body could be painted together, instead of the cab and bed having to be painted separately, then joined. All this contributed to lower production costs.
The Styleside “unibody” was not used on all the 1961-1963 trucks. The traditional Flareside bed was still available. But because the Styleside didn’t lend itself well to the twisting and flexing a truck gets in heavy-duty use, the Styleside was not available on 4x4s and the F350 (yellow).
And because the “unibody” turned out to have serious structural issues, that separate cab and bed version also became available on the F-100 and F-250 in mid-1962. It was an awkward combination: the new ’61 cab married to the old previous-generation bed. That used to really throw me when I was a kid. And we covered that here in greater detail.
And Ford had to tool up two separate door outer skins in order for the respective side moldings to integrate (or not) into that sweeping side accent line on the Styleside.
It’s well known that I drive a ’66 F-100. But I will let you in on a secret: I would never have bought one of these Ford “slicks”, as much as I appreciate them for their daring metrosexuality. I guess it was just a bit to feminine even for me. Or maybe it was just that I didn’t think this bed design was a practical or rugged as the later separate version that became standard in 1964. Which it clearly wasn’t.
Actually, my favorite year for this series is undoubtedly the ’65. It’s front grille design is by far the best of the bunch. And the major mechanical changes that started with the ’65, including the new I-Beam front end and the new Big-Six engines were a substantial improvement. And the new rear bed now really works, having lost those very curvaceous flared rear wheel openings . Looking just a wee bit more butch already, eh?
I know lots of folks bitch about the Twin I-Beam front end, but it’s a much nicer riding and handling affair than the crude solid beam axle on its predecessor, like this 1962. Even the steering wheel had a better angle in the later versions. Other than that, this interior looks mighty familiar.
As much as I appreciate the slick’s quirky rear end styling, it wasn’t what I had in mind at the time: maximum utility and ruggedness. And its two-handle tailgate latches seem a bit tedious. Amazingly enough, my battered tailgate still works and latches. The ’64 and up bed looks a bit more solid to me, and it’s not just my imagination.
But I admit to having a soft spot for that giant rear window, which the non-unibody trucks never had. And I’ve always wondered, did Ford spend the money to have this big piece of glass tooled up, or is it a leftover windshield or rear window from a previous car? Does anybody recognize it?
The engines available in this ’62 were Ford’s old but quite adequate 223 cubic inch “Mileage Maker” six, or the less-than-admirable 292 CID Y-block 292 V8, not known for its efficiency. The 262 CID version of the six was also in the mix, and would be my choice (obviously). From the emblem on the hood, this one is graced with a six, and a four-speed granny-gear manual.
Somehow, the loads that needed to be hauled in 1962 were done so, even if it was with a pathetic little 114 hp six and a sleek and feminine low-rider body.
Dad had maybe a ’65 or ’66 with a V8 and a 3 on the tree in the early ’80s. It was rough, but with those ’70’s mag wheels, it looked and sounded kinda stout.
Before that he had a late ’50s Chevy pickup that I remember as being cool, but he never talks about either truck ever. I think he saw them as symbols of being broke and not of being hip, which for him is probably true. They were bought because that is what he could afford, not because he would enjoy a truck he could afford.
The only 2 trucks he talks about fondly of the many he had are an ’86 Bronco II and an ’87 Mitsubishi Mighty Max, both 4x4s. The Bronco because it had an extremely tight turning radius even though it almost killed us twice and in spite of cracked heads which caused its sale, and the Mits because it had a limited slip rear and was an absolute goat. He was an avid duck hunter at the time and both attributes figured into getting the boat and trailer into (and back out of) the water greatly.
Today, he has tons of disposable income and drives an ’08 F150 optioned very nicely, but doesn’t have much of an opinion of it. I drove it quite a bit and was impressed with the steering accuracy and how stiff the entire truck is, but he had never noticed either.
And so I say all that to say this: Are we the weird ones for looking back on past cars and trucks with fondness, or is he for not doing so?
Good question. No doubt having the freedom to chose your cars and trucks, including old ones as “toys” changes ones perspective from having to drive beaters as a result of being being economically constrained. Anti-consumerism is usually advocated by those that can afford it.
Ha, never heard that one before but it’s so true. I’m a bit of an anti-consumerist and frequently notice how amazingly expensive it can be to not be wasteful and especially to avoid buying what is essentially just landfill. Even after 3 years of working at it, the organic honey we collect from our bees costs easily five times what we could buy organic honey for at the store.
I don’t tend to care about the expense very much, but that’s a luxury I couldn’t afford most of my life (not that I’m wealthy now).
But back to that truck: Seems I always know at least one person with one of those ’60s Ford trucks, and always thought they were very pretty, especially the unibody models with that cool back window. Could that back window have come from a Galaxy or T-bird circa ’59? It does look familiar since you brought it up…
I don’t get any of this debate. There is nothing macho about a modern truck no matter how tall they make the wheels or how big the exhaust pipes. If it has power windows and heated seats it sure as hell aint a man’s truck. They are all feminine looking to me and so are the fancy boys who fix them up
This is a manly truck:
There’s nothing “macho” or “sissy” about either one. It’s juvenile, sexist, and possibly homophobic to put everything into those categories. The only thing that matters is what’s necessary to get the job done and what’s necessary for the comfort and convenience of the worker. Any more or less just devolves into self-aggrandizement.
Give me an engine capable of maintaining highway speeds. Give me build quality that doesn’t feel like it’s going to fall apart if I go down a washboard gravel road. Give me door seals that actually keep water and dust out. Give me four-wheel-drive. Give me an automatic transmission if it’s mechanically superior (’97-onward for F-150, 2011-onward for Super Duty). Give me that little light over the bed so I can see what I’m doing at night. Give me bucket seats with a flip-down console/middle seat for the 5% of the time I’m carrying a third passenger. Or better yet, an extended cab. Give me A/C so I’m not already soaked through before I even get out to the field. Give me FM radio so a portion of my mind is occupied and doesn’t wander off, taking the rest with it. For God’s sake, give me and the passenger an airbag and working seatbelts.
All those things are beneficial, not detrimental, to the “real pickup” experience and anyone who says otherwise is being wilfully ignorant just for the sake of doing so.
Good points. I particularly love my flip down center seat. I don’t understand why anybody would want a cetner console in a pickup. What a waste of space. It is getting harder and harder to find trucks without them though.
Chevy does it best with additional storage under the seat. Or, at least, they did on the ’07 generation, not sure about the new ones.
If you stick to the “pedestrian” models (Ford XLT, Chevy LT, Ram SLT) it’s not too hard to find what they now call a “40/20/40 bench seat”. If you want a trim level with leather (Lariat, Laramie, LTZ, etc.), you’ll be hard-pressed to find a center seat, but they do make them.
“And so I say all that to say this: Are we the weird ones for looking back on past cars and trucks with fondness, or is he for not doing so?”
I don’t know that “weird” is the term I’d use. Many of my old cars were beaters I bought because I was broke; but for some of them, I had a deep affection I still have.
I recounted my Postal Jeep history elsewhere…now, that car was so outrageous, so impractical, so redolent of poverty and abject lack of good sense…it made being broke FUN. Then there was Blazing Saddles, my Texas Pinto Squire wagon…it avoided most of the rust that tended to kill the breed; but had mos of its quirks.
Now, imagine being 22, broke, unemployed, and using a Pinto Squire, with faded applique wood-grain all over it, to go on a date? It really DID bolster self-confidence. I HAD to not give a damn what people thought.
And for all that, it was a reasonable car in the way Pintos were good. The German four was a smooth, strong (for the era) runner; the four-speed would snick into gears like a sports car. Gas mileage approached 26; which matters when you’re broke, no matter the price of a gallon.
Point of it is, that car, which should have embarrassed me to tears…I remember fondly. Not so much my later Escort or even my Nissan King Cab 4×4 truck.
I think it was because that Pinto, with that Jeep, with a few other beaters…they took care of me when I needed it most.
Yes the modern truck does look girly lots of shiny chrome big bling wheels what a childish POS thre old 62 looks good it has a OZ style ute bed I dont ever remember seeing that model none were imported here and i cant recall any that shape in OZ.
“Childish” is a good adjective for the modern style in trucks. They look a great deal like the Tonka Toys that belong to 6-year-olds. Marketing genius though, I must admit…
Yes!…that’s been hammering in the back of my mind, every time I see one of these off-putting, ungainly, garish new trucks.
Childish. Tonka truck. PERFECT description.
Give me a MANLY truck…a 1964-66 GMC with the V-6 and a manual; or – dare I say it – a Jeep J-20 or earlier J-2000? Something designed to WORK, not shimmer and shine and look pretty…pretty gaudy.
Something with NO CHROME. Even the vent-window divider-channel blacked out. Something…with a VENT WINDOW.
To keep the wind from the open window from blowing my hair into my eyes. When I open the window.
Because it has no air conditioning. Like it has no velour. Like its carpeting is made of rubber.
Wind blowing hair in your eyes? Now who’s dreaming in technicolor?
Well, I don’t necessarily want a “man truck” as you call it. At my age (any age in GA, really) one appreciates AC, PS, and PB. That and the stereo does it for me.
Can’t help but notice our ’90 F150 is looking pretty classic compared to the modern Tonka Toy style though…
That, and we have no hair left to blow in our eyes!
“I didn’t have any of these things when I was growing up, so I’ll just insult the masculinity of anyone else who has them!”
Yeah, that and “I can’t afford/justify the cost and/or gas, so nobody else should be able to either!”
Meanwhile, the sales numbers indicate modern trucks are exactly what consumers want.
I have always admired the looks of these trucks. The ultimate problem, I think, is that Ford was targeting a market that did not really exist. Those who appreciated the sleek beauty of these vehicles were most likely those who had bought the 57-59 Rancheros, which were basically cars and which were very pleasant to drive.
Unfortunately, these single I-beam axle trucks with their twin leaf springs were just miserable to drive. These were built for working. I owned a 63 F-100 with this suspension setup, and I’m here to tell you: Anyone who put in an 8 hour day driving one of these trucks really earned his paycheck. I found mine fun in short doses, but driving it for any length of time became a lot of work.
So, buyers who wanted looks were run off by the driving characteristics that appealed to he-man farmers and dockworkers, while those looking for utility were put off by the lack of practicality of this body. You could not remove or swap beds for different uses or after an accident. I also understand that this body suffered from nasty torquing when the bed was really loaded up then driven over uneven surfaces.
But it sure is pretty. And I had never noticed the different door skins between this one and the Flareside.
Perhaps the folks who bought these could also have been former drivers of Chevrolet Cameos or Dodge Sweptsides?
If you’re in the market for one of these and you plan on hot rodding it at all look into a 65-66. I learned the hard way that the frames were redesigned for 65 and the earlier versions weren’t up to the torque output of the later engines.
My 63 F 350 had the 223/4 speed and 5.32 gears! No joke, it topped out at 45mph.. And she was screaming doing it.
It was a farm truck all it’s life but i’m guessing it was a dairy or hobby farm as the bed had almost no damage and there was no rust through. It did have rust, it was a black truck that was peppered with surface rust to the point of looking purple-ish from a distance. It was a styleside long bed, a bit of an odd duck as the long bed itself was the same dating back to the 1957 trucks. I may be wrong but I remember reading that Ford didn’t have a dedicated long bed for these until 64?
(I forgot my login for flickr, but I think I had a pic of my 63 up there)
Some 8 years back I found a Slick sitting behind a gas station for $1000.. Shoulda bought that thing right then and there.. But my better half at the time put her foot down on that idea.
I love the style of the ’62. (The clean face of the ’61 model looked even better, IMO.) The later models with separate cargo boxes and Twin I-Beam suspension were better trucks, but weren’t nearly as sleek. And the ’11, with stilt-like proportions and a toaster-size badge on the front? Not at all.
Yes sir. i have a 1962 ford pick-up with a 351 engine in it. This truck has been in the family for at least 30 years.It also only has 48,000 original miles on it but, the engine is not original. my grandfather installed this engine 15 years ago. I would like to sell it for $ 1800 to the first buyer. Thanks, Demetrius 678-853-3022
Well, now.. This gives me a chance to post a pic of what I think is the most beautifully truck ever. Sometime between 1965 and 1973 Ford made an optional 9′ step side. To me the combination of the 60’s era cab and the step-side long bed is somehow irresistible. If I ever saw one I would have to buy it.
Yes, my dream truck: ’65 F250/350, that 9′ bed with a dump lift, 300 six, and a modern six-speed tranny (low first, four intermediate gears, overdrive top).
You nailed it
Surely that configuration cant be impossible to find even just a driving chassis then junkyard the rest of it, We have nearly none of the US fords they simply were not imported The local equivalent was by Bedford of England in a whole range of lengths and carrying capacities real 50s trucks right thru till the end beam front axle 4 speed 6cyl Chevvy engine drum brakes flat bed either tipping or not tick the box you want. All gone now swapt away with the tidal wave of Japanease imports which are much netter engineered and built modern turbo diesel engines modern cabs COE design such a major improve ment over the old bangers and far more useful than the glitter shitboxes currently available from the big 3,
I have a 62 with a 9ft stepside. Needs some work on carb,brakes,doors but the body is good and the V8 runs. Any idea what it may be worth?
Just now searching for a buyer for my 1962 Ford F100 sidestep. if you are still interested in the purchase of this classic style please contact me.
I realize your post was June 5, 2011 and you may have already gotten the truck of your dreams. if so, I hope you are enjoying your ride,
Are you still looking for a buyer for the ’62 stepside?
My dad has a truck that used to look just like that one. Same color and all, except that it is a 1966. It was apparently an Arkansas Highway Department truck. He took the cab off and put it on a short wheelbase frame with a short wide bed. The truck originally had a six (I don’t know if it was a 240 or a 300)/3 on the tree, but he’s putting a 302/3 on the tree in it. He had a ’66 with a 351 Windsor and a 3 on the tree. I nearly wrecked it when I was 14 or 15 because the steering was so slow. It was a fun truck, though.
Man, that smooth-skin Ford brings back memories…1990, my first trip out West…camping and photographing a number of places.
It seemed those Styleside Fords were EVERYWHERE. I had never seen one before; they would have all dissolved into rust out East long before I would have noted such things. But in the West…it seemed, at that time 1990, it was the truck for the young bucks down on the farm, or ranch, without means, to have.
I think Ford, like others, were flailing around trying to figure out what the recreational-truck market would look like. Was it the Ranchero? Didn’t seem so. Was it the traditional step-side truck? Not likely. That market was likely saturated. Chevy’s smooth, sculpted-side truck seemed to bring in new customers. So, what if they tried a blend of the two? Truck body, styled sides, one unit?
Which brings me to a question: WERE those trucks unibody, under all that; or did they share a frame, even if they didn’t have separate body and frame mountings?
Those truck do have a real full frame.
Our next-door neighbor when we lived in the St. Louis area had one of these – red and white and cute as a button all over – until it was wrecked – hit by another car and subsequently junked.
The real find would be to locate one of those late 60’s – early 70’s styling odd-ball Dodge pickups with the dip line along the sides and goofy-shaped cab! Those would really be a conversation piece now – a kind of life-sized coffee table book with a story all its own!
There’s plenty of those old Dodges here. We’ll have to do a CC sometime soon.
I will never understand how there could be so many slick Mopars of the ’60s and….that truck. I don’t mean to dump on anyones favorite ride, but man, those things were hideous…
Now now, be tactful…
Those Dodges had their crude charms.
Those things weren’t sold on their appearances. Remember, they were made alongside the old Power Wagons…which hadn’t changed a bit, appearance-wise, since the war.
It was probably newbie-duty, working on the Dodge pickup line. Put a dip in the stiffening ridge along the side of the body – just like Ford did. Put chrome headlight bezels on it…like other companies. Hang some brightwork on there; square off the back of the cab a little bit…
What, it looks gaudy? Goofy? Who cares? It’s a DODGE, fer chrissakes…they aren’t buying it for the STYLE….
When it comes to crude charm, I think even the Dodge M37 looks better than those ugly D-series. Too bad they discontinued it; I heard they were not improved upon by their civilian-based successors like the Jeep M715. Why didn’t Dodge simply replace the flathead with the /6 and keep building them?
Virgil Exner’s only completely new standard truck design, along with the compact A100. There’s an admirable clunkiness to these Sweptlines, alougth their successor was much, much better all around,
Have fond memories of these trucks. We had a bunch of them in various family businesses, from pickups, to a dump truck, to a pair of medium-duty chassis cabs with insulated box bodies,
When I was a kid, there was a old man living next to the Post Office who had one of these, I believe short wheelbase. He was an eccentric old devil who apparently ran a freelance scrapmetal business out of his yard…or maybe he was early into Industrial Art. Whichever, his truck was painted gray primer (brush finish) with his name handwritten (maybe fingerwritten) on the doors. I’d always see it loaded with scrap metal in his yard.
One day I found that the Ford had joined the rest of the scrap in his yard–it was cut up in little tiny pieces and scattered all over the place. The old boy was a fiend with an acetylene torch–he did the same thing with an early ’50s F-1 too.
I happened to see this CC come up in the rotation on the home page, and then recalled I had actually seen one of these this past Saturday at our local weekend farmers’ market, still in use as a produce hauler. In a similar color scheme to the CC truck, actually. I was struck by how diminutive it was in comparison to modern trucks–even a standard, not-radically-jacked-up Toyota Tacoma seems larger, let alone a Tundra.
Old trucks rule. I picked this one up a few years ago for a song. Original paint, 70k miles, farm truck from GA.
It has a (rather thirsty) 390 2V with 3-speed auto. It is slowly rusting away in our humid ocean air, but I enjoy the heck out of it. My wife and most friends don’t get my attraction to it, but it’s just such an honest truck. The slot mags were scored from a pick and pull yard locally and polished in my garage. Tires had to be larger in back to get that ‘South GA Rake’ that is essential to any old, 2WD truck here.
I wouldn’t call the 1961-62 feminine or metrosexual and in fact I think you’re an asshole for doing so. These trucks had graceful lines that were a tasteful reflection of the times and probably the pinnicle of American styling. The tailgate script and tail light configuration is clearly more imaginative and striking. Up front, the ’65 looks much too busy when comapared to the minimalist all in one grille of the 61-62. Additionally, the uni-body’s lack of gap between bed and cab promotes a continuity between panels that 50 years of abuse on a ’63 or later would render. It also creates a dramatic line across the whole vehicle that the later years simply can not touch.
I think you took me too seriously! Ever heard of the expression “tongue-in-cheek”?
Hi Paul. I have a 62 F-100 big rear window ford next to my barn, It was here when we bought the property, and my son, second one that is, at 15 years old wants to restore it. I love the look of the rig, and consider it art in a way. A look back at a time past but not forgotten. Hope all is well with you and yours. Is that a pic of Doc Rankins old Cadillac at the top of this page? Sure looks like it. I sold a 1958 Chevy Cameo to buy this place bout 12 years ago. I miss that pickup. But both have big back windows. CLASSIC AMERICANA my friend, classic.
Hey Paul, why no comeback? You erased your conversation! I was looking for more entertainment!
I remember my college room-mate (at the time, the proud owner of a ’61 Chevy 235 step-side) talking about the early 60’s Styleside. He said the issue was that, with the twisting and flexing a work truck had to do, the lovely back window would pop out! He said the truck had a terrible reputation because of that. Never saw an example of that, but I was around many mid-60’s Ford wide-beds (with the separate bed) growing up on an Arkansas hill farm. Riding in the bed over a rough field hauling hay, you could see the cab constantly going one lateral direction and the bed shifting another. The chassis seemed pretty flexy, even by a 13 year-old’s standards. This was a white ’65 with a 352 and about 275,000 miles, purchased for $300 in about 1973. Loosest steering I’ve ever driven, like helming the Queen Mary.
Down here, where people have always loved trucks, you almost never see the unit cab/bed version still on the road, while there are plenty of the flare-sides and the ones using the old round tail-light wide-bed from the ’50’s (which I also found confusing as a kid).
I too, now have an 08 F150 (six, stick, rubber floor mats — probably in deference to those old farm trucks of my youth) and you really notice the stiff chassis compared to those old ones and even the mid-90’s Mazda-Ranger-clone that this truck replaced.
I have a1963 step side pick up with a263 motor in and i have yet to see another one like it with a 8 foot bed it was been in the family seen 1964 if there any more out there i would like to now please get me no
My uncle bought his 62 f250 unibody new when I was 4 years old. As the second owner I’ve had it for 17 years. It has 170,000 original miles, has never in it’s life been wrecked or rusted. Hauled a 13 foot cab-over camper for 15 years and then a fifth wheel camper. I retired it from work on the farm in 1997 but will neve get rid of it. It has done more than it’s share of very heavy hauling and we’ve never had any issues with twisting or breakage.
There is one of those “unibody” Fords that shows up at our local car show once in a while. I’ve only seen a few. But I would take any truck, even a mid ’70s Datsun, over those huge ugly stended cabs and crew cabs. I really don’t see much of anything masculine about a 4 door truck, or any truck with a plush interior. I am 100% blue collar, and like my trucks plain, simple, and robust. Vinyl bench seat, rubber floor mats, roll up windows, and a manual transmission. They don’t make my type of truck anymore
Of course they do. But nobody buys them.
$39,000 for a 4×2 stripper work truck??? I know it’s a 2500 and therefore heavy-duty, and probably carries a diesel or a decent V8, but…damn. No wonder some of these Lariat King Ranch Denali whathaveyou “Cadillac Trucks” are pushing $70k.
Sadly, the manual is non-HO Cummins-only. Not that I have anything against the Cummins, but the Hemis are competent motors and I’d like to not have to pay the Cummins tax ($8000 up front plus how much more in fuel at every fill-up).
But really, I’m just glad somebody’s still got a manual, even if every modern automatic is actually better at knowing when to shift and when to stay in one gear than a human is.
And no-one said they’d pay 39K. A Ram 2500 starts at $30K. My local Ford dealer is offering 11.5K off on 2014 models; I’m sure a lot of Ram dealers would do the same if it meant making a sale on a rare bird no one wants.
And that price isn’t going nowhere. This Ram 2500 can tow 16,900 lbs. and/or haul over 3,000 in the bed. Even as a base-model Tradesman, it’s still got enough bells and whistles to be useful while keeping the vinyl seats, rubber floors and crank windows that all the Luddites here worship.
And nobody’s going to at that kind of price. My local Chevy dealer does have a 4.3L V6 powered automatic transmission 1/2 ton 2WD Silverado W/T on sale once in a while for around $20K. But the highway mileage, even with the V6, was 22 MPG. I can’t afford that kind of mileage on a vehicle I’m going to put 30,000+ miles a year on. If I had room, I would buy an older truck mainly to use when I actually needed a truck.
But I do have to wonder, if a standard cab shortbed 2WD with a V6 only gets 22 mpg highway, what does a crew cab 4WD get? Again, it comes down to money. Somebody pays $70K for a truck that gets 15 mpg highway, probably $200 a month insurance on it, and then racks up miles like crazy. I have seen a lot of these on Craigslist, late models with 150,000 or more miles on them. The depreciation is insane. From ‘$70K to less than $15K in 5 years. Oh, and in AZ, a $70K truck is going to have $7K sales tax added, and the registration for the first few years is going to be about $1K per year. Do we really have that many rich people out there, or am I just really poor?
Not sure where you are getting your numbers from, but my ’06 Crew Cab F-150 is still worth over $15K and had a sticker price of $34K when new. That’s excellent resale after 9 years.
The new F-150 with the 2.7 is reportedly getting 25+ MPG on the highway even in 4×4 Crew trim. That’s incredible for a vehicle that size with that capability. Even so, it’s ridiculous to buy one if you don’t have a use for it, which you apparently don’t. This is the the second time you’ve said as much. If your Malibu works fine, why keep trying to justify a pickup?
I am impressed by Ford’s small ecoboost V6. In fact, I’m so impressed I think it is time they build a heavy duty ecoboost 4 cylinder for a full sized 2wheel drive half ton basic work truck. I’m thinking 2.5L running about 45 lbs of boost and tuned for peak torque at 3000RPM.
The MPG tests are done with the best-selling model–in this case, a crew cab 4×4. It gets “only” 22 MPG? 22 over my father’s ’06, which gets 14 hwy, is a 57% improvement. That’s nothing to scoff at. That’s the same or better as my ’02 Mazda, with about 4 times the towing and payload capacities.
I tried and tried, but there was no way I could get any F-150 on the Build and Price above $64K–and that’s before any local dealer rebates. There definitely are $70K trucks out there, but not in the 1/2-ton category.
You are right about the high mileage on some of them. My father has started to look for a late-model F-150 to replace his ’06, and there are ’12, ’13, and ’14 models that have twice as many mile
There are 4 categories I know of who buy trucks like these and drive the wheels off them.
1. Farmers who are taxed on their surplus cash reserves who must spend the money every year to avoid paying taxes on it
2. Self employed people who form an LLC and do not title vehicles in their name
3. Guys who live in the country or very tiny towns and commute long distance to a well paying job which does not allow them to call in sick or stay home because of weather. Their homes are valued extremely low in these places, as in 15 to 40 thousand, with the lot it sits on valued under 5 thousand, and property taxes are nearly non existent. When your house is paid for and your property taxes are under a thousand a year and you heat your house with wood, you can afford a 50 thousand dollar truck with a 500/week fuel bill. In fact, you can get some of the vehicle expense deducted from your income taxes when you commute.
4. extremely stupid people
I didn’t buy my Crew Cab to look masculine. I bought it because it can comfortably fit 3 car seats in back at the same time as my 6’3″ frame in the front while still being able to handle the hauling duties I ask of it. A regular cab can’t. A smaller truck can’t either.
Times change. The days of stay-at-home mom doing all the kid hauling are long gone.
We had a discussion about this at work a little while back. I don’t get pickups or why you would want one unless you needed it for your job, business, hobby, etc. I feel the same about jeans, so I realize I’m the weirdo, especially in SC.
The consensus was that normal trucks (not the jacked up ones trying to drop panties) are handy to have, even for suburban folks, and they are simply the only comfortable vehicles left anymore besides full size SUV’s. Why jam yourself in a car, which are all too tight inside these days due to the consoles and thick sloped aerodynamically shaped pillars.
No one really feels that man could actually change his ways if global warming is real and gas isn’t that expensive, even at $4/5 bucks a gallon – so why not be comfortable? To each his own. Thank goodness we are not all the same!
When I need a truck I just rent one, which is rare. I had no trouble fitting my fat 250lb rear end in my CRV to pick up 500lbs of horse feed last weekend – no gas guzzling pickup or jeans required.
“O, reason not the need! Our basest beggars
Are in the poorest thing superfluous.”
I’m just as guilty with my rationalization. From what I have learned on this site, a French farmer needs nothing more than a 2CV or Renault 4 to run his produce to market.
This would make a great QOTD, how much car is really necessary? Despite my comment, I probably could have made the horse feed run for my wife and daughter about as easy in a 2CV. It’s one of the few vehicles one can get into at the Lane Motor Museum in Nashville(seriously cool place, they even have a bunch of Tatras), and even my tubby American body squeezed in. I’d love to drive one.
No car is necessary when it comes down to it. Not if you live in a city with public transportation. I don’t want to live that way though and I’m not going to apologize for it.
I don’t have a truck (other than a V8 powered S10 built mainly for drag racing) but I don’t get the jeans reference. I have worn jeans for over 50 years, the only exceptions being weddings and funerals. Jeans, t shirts, and a baseball cap are what I wear 99% of the time. They are by far the favorite garb of blue collar types. I have a zillion scars from minor injuries over the decades, and the skin on my hands is ruined from exposure to car chemicals over 50 years or so. This is all part of the job/hobby. But I don’t have a single tattoo. I have never purposely damaged myself.
For a brief shining moment in about 1972 proper Wedding attire consisted of ironing my best pair of jeans , polishing my boots to a mirror gloss and putting on a new T – Shirt….
I no longer wear jeans , too fat , I wear lighter garb nowadays .
@Nate: Don’t you realize that Levi’s markets its’ jeans to formerly slim & trim guys? Their Comfort Fit 560 are available in waist sizes up to 54″!! They also have an astronomical price as well $68!! 🙂
Fun fact: Levi’s are sold at Target as the downmarket Denizen brand for less than half the price. Brand new “fashion” jeans for $20? I’ll take that.
I stock up on plain pocket “Rustler” brand jeans from walmart, tractor supply, or bomgaars when on sale for under 10 bucks a pair. I probably have a half dozen brand new never before worn pairs in my closet right now.
I think Chevrolet / GMC did a better job, styling and engineering wise with its pickups of the same era; the unibodies respond well to customizing though. The below was created by Industrial Chassis (http://www.industrialchassisinc.com/), a well-respected Phoenix hot rod shop – there is an 1100 hp engine under that hood, and the chassis no longer features Ford’s crude original suspension…
I think the 1967 Ford and Chevy pickups, standard cab, short or long bed, were a couple of the best looking trucks ever made. Both were all new for ’67, they had nice clean styling, they had vinyl bench seats, you could get them with automatic and A/C, but they weren’t all done up like a car inside. Still lots of bare painted metal. Roll up windows, rubber floor mats. They were well made out of metal about twice as heavy as today’s tin cans, they were designed to haul and tow, they were simple basic utilitarian vehicles and did their job well. They came with dog dish hub caps. Both were available with 2WD or 4WD, and a straight six or V8. These trucks got the job done then, and they will still get it done today. While I prefer the Chevy style, I’d have to go with the Ford because of it’s Twin-I-Beam front suspension. The suspension on a truck needs to be tough enough to take rough treatment without having to deal with correcting the alignment all the time. I noticed in the 27 years I worked for the city of Chandler fleet department that it was the Fords that never had front end problems till they went to car front suspension in ’97.
Well no ;
Actually GM really began cheaping on it the 1967 model year and those rigs are famous for rusting out when new and into to – day .
Yes , they’re great trucks *but* when the cabs rust out from the un treated inside pinch welds , this indicates a serious dropping of the ball by GM .
I’m replacing my cab because the rust got so bad , I manged to rip the floor loose from the rest of the cab whilst driving , this on an original paint Texas rig .
The tapering white gap between the toe board and floor board is what I discovered when I pulled up the rubber mat after I began to feel the cab shifting as I rounded corners .
Next pic will be an exterior shot that makes it look *perfect* when in fact it was junk .
Those ’67-’72 Chevy/GMC pickups are indeed notorious for rusting out. I’ve only seen a few of them that weren’t completely rusted through where the floor meets the sill panel. One of them was a ’72 motor home with a 402/automatic. The camper body went over the cab, and was wider than the cab so it kept water away from the sill panel. My dad has a ’69 or ’70 that has very little rust in that location. I’ve seen trucks that looked very nice from the outside that were rusted through in that area. The rust holes were as long as the doors. The attached picture is from one of his old trucks, this one a ’72 with a 292 six and granny gear 4 speed.
…and as Paul already covered elsewhere (https://www.curbsideclassic.com/automotive-histories/1965-1966-ford-f-series-ranger-a-bit-too-far-ahead-of-its-time/), Ford was again ahead of its time with the Ranger, a factory custom pick up with all the options…
“And Ford had to tool up two separate door outer skins in order for the respective side moldings to integrate (or not) into that sweeping side accent line on the Styleside.”
It’s also interesting to note the changes in the Galaxie in the 60s. It seems Ford retools for rather significant changes to the outer skin nearly every year. It would seem to be very expensive to do as well as damaging to the identity of the car. What accounts for all the indecision?
Some panels from the Galaxie were the same from one year to the next. IIRC, the front fenders were the same on the ’61 and ’62 Fords. The rear panels were completely different, however.
The best thing about the ’61 Ford pickup was synchronized low. In my first job around 1970, I drove a company Styleside to deliver office supplies and furniture. Cars didn’t have a sync’d first in those days, so it was a pleasant surprise.
I was an expert at “masculine” doubleclutching back then, but “feminine” sync made delivery work MUCH easier.
I had a 1966 F100 for about five years that was my favorite truck. Some drunk in a concrete truck ended it’s life about ten years ago. Thankfully no one was in it.
I have always loved these uni body trucks , I remember when new that the doors were hard to close when parked on un uneven ground like 1/2 way on a berm or one or two wheels in the ditch next to a field .
I never heard any honest story about the rear windows popping out .
Maybe that backlight was a Station Wagon item ? . looks about right .
The twin I Beam suspension was clever when new but even the die hard Ford guys I know , all hated it because once the original alignment was gone (new bushings etc.) they’d eat tires .
I remember shops having special ” TWIN I BEAM SPECIALIST ” sings hanging out front , a very few .
I’d rock one of these in a heart beat , with a big InLine 6 Banger and C6 slushbox .
I had two ’59 F-100’s , both short bed stepsides with 6 cylinder and three on the tree manual , about 2,000 turns of steering lock to lock but very well made and nearly impossible to kill by over working them .
Lastly , real Men know that whatever they do , becomes Masculine by default ~ a big truck isn’t going to make you any Manlier .
Around here, standard practice to realign Twin I-Beams (once the kingpin and pivot bushings were tight) was to heat the axle cherry red and bend it back into spec. It worked and I kid you not.
Yes Gene ;
I know bending the I Beam is std. practice .
It’s done cold when done correctly .
heating suspension parts is a big no-no .
Right, Nate. Now that you mention it, I’ve seen it done cold with a Port-A-Power, too. It’s been a few years! 😉
The Twin I Beam suspension was great when it was working properly. If any of the members got bent in any way it was worthless. I had a ’77 F100 that handled great. I drove it on a 500 mile round trip to Dallas and it handled very well, even on the freeway at 70 mph. I miss that old truck. I sold it and used the proceeds as a down payment on a ’93 Probe (this was 1995). I miss that Probe as well.
I wonder if it’s coincidence or intent that this was re-posted right now, when Chevy has started running a series of ads for their new Colorado that point how a man is more of a man, and is more favorably judged by society and by women, when he drives a truck rather than a car.
Those ads make me want to throw heavy objects at my TV. I hate how bald-faced an appeal that is to the shallow among us, but I also hate the reminder that the majority of society, being shallow, probably do think more favorably of a man in a new truck.
Some things never change, I guess.
> …and is more favorably judged by society and by women, when he drives a truck rather than a car.
On the one hand, I’ll say this: well, can you really blame a woman who wants her man or the men in her life (be they a boyfriend, husband, relatives, co-workers or friends) to act and be like REAL men?!? No, I’m not suggesting that only real men drive a truck. On the other hand, I’ll call it for what it is: a form of sexism and stereotyping.
> Those ads make me want to throw heavy objects at my TV. I hate how bald-faced an appeal that is to the shallow among us, but I also hate the reminder that the majority of society, being shallow, probably do think more favorably of a man in a new truck.
Do you also desire to throw things at the TV set when an advertiser uses sex to sell a product?? How about whan an advertisement suggests that you’re somehow not a man or are less of a man than you should be if you don’t use their male “enhancement” product? After all… SIZE DOES MATTER. Right?!? I roll my eyes around and around at the suggestion…
please go back to your homework and quit trolling around with the adults
“When I’m watchin’ my TV
And that man comes on to tell me
How white my shirts can be
But he can’t be a man ’cause he doesn’t smoke
The same cigarettes as me”
– Sir Michael Philip Jagger
No way, the 97 was the ugliest most feminine truck they made. People absolutely hated it when it came out.
Isn’t it great how we automatically associate “feminine” with “ugly”?
I seem to be the only one who loves the looks of the 97-03 “jellybean” F-Series, although I may be a bit biased because a ’98 F-250 (F-150 with 7-lug wheels, tranny cooler and heavy frame) was my first vehicle, and my sister’s first vehicle. After 12 years of faithful service, first as the “nice truck,” then as the “kid’s car,” we sold her off to my contractor uncle who used her as a work truck. It just wasn’t feasible to have 3 pickup trucks (avg. MPG between the three: about 12) and 3 other cars for the four of us.
Just yesterday as we were driving through our local Ford dealer to check out the ’15s, my dad and I spotted a familiar-looking pickup in the back lot. Guess who!
We could tell it was the old 250 because of the dent in the roof, put there in about ’05 by a low-hanging garage door handle. She was considerably worse for the wear, I might add–you can’t see it in this picture, but on the driver’s side the bed was completely out of line with the cab, like something heavy had been sitting on that side and the truck was taken down a washboard road sideways. (At least three of the hubcaps were still there!) We didn’t check the odometer, but she’d had 138K miles when we sold her to Uncle Paul and he probably put another hard 10-20K on. He got $1500 trade-in on a new F-350 work truck, and the old ’98 currently sits at $1995.
It was sad to see the old girl in such a state, but I knew she had done her job well and without complaint for my father, myself and my uncle.
In 4×2 regular stripper guise, you may be right. These typically sat up high with big tires though, which gave them a fairly aggressive look. I liked them until I saw the crash test results. Yikes.
I am soooo glad I never saw the crash test until after we sold the ’98.
Nice looking truck. I’m sure many people who are not into pickups would not even notice the one piece bed and cab. Combined with the curved rear window does give a sleek look. Not so sure if I’m seeing the “girly” effect. The tailgate does kind of spoil the smooth effect. I wonder if it’s bends and dual latches are to add rigidity when loaded to help reduce flex. Others have posted that they are durable over the long haul. I would wonder about extreme overloading. The straight front axle, while strong is not ideal for ride and handling. I wouldn’t kick a good one out of my driveway.
Great find, Paul! Until your article, I never even knew that these existed. This almost seems like Ford’s answer to Chevy’s Cameo pickup.
I’ve been a “car guy” for more decades than I care to admit. Most “normal” people are amazed (or annoyed) at all the random auto-trivia i can spout from memory. But at least once per week, Paul writes about some model or design feature that I hadn’t heard of. He’s the master! (Not worthy, not worthy!)
I see nothing feminine or “metrosexual” in this truck. I`m not really a truck guy, but this one does look pretty cool, and I wouldn`t mind owning one. I`ll take one over a SUV anyday,I`m just not into-or excited by SUVs,they do nothing for me.
I hope Phil… that you’re not excluding or counting out in any way the Ford Bronco, specifically the early Bronco or even the big Bronco of 1978 and 1979? Technically, those are SUV types of vehicles. If you’ve never taken one out for a drive, please do so ASAP. I think you’ll like it.
The F Series is for Female. The cigarette lighter has been replaced with lipstick
Oh wow… John Lane… must be another completely bitter and consumed with jealousy Chevy type, maybe a Dodge type – the kind that cannot face the fact that the F-series has been the best selling truck for decades. In many years even the best selling vehicle. The F-series = a penis truck. Get your eyes checked and get over yourself!
This whole thing has gotten ridiculous. A truck is a vehicle, not a sexual indicator. The choice of any make is a personal thing. I like Fords best but Chevies and Dodges, Nissans Toyotas are fine. Big or little truck. who cares.
You umm completely missed the joke.
It’s a quote from The Simpsons when Homer buys the Canyonero.
The Canyonero is the trademark Sport Utility Vehicle (SUV) in The Simpsons. It was endorsed by Krusty the Clown when it first appeared in “The Last Temptation of Krust”. It is a large red SUV and was introduced just as the SUV craze began to hit the United States. The design is basically a parody of the large SUV and the “I own an SUV, therefore, I own the road” style of driving. The theme song helps to demonstrate this. Homer buys a red Canyonero in Marge Simpson in: “Screaming Yellow Honkers”, but soon realizes he bought the F-series. (“F” presumably means “Female”.) The only difference between it and the normal model is the horn and the cigarette lighter being replaced by a lipstick holder. He refuses to drive it; when Marge drives it, it sends her into a state of road rage. It is actually a parody of a Jeep Wagoneer, and while also have similarities to the Ford Excursion. It also worth noting the similiarities in exterior design between the Simpson family station wagon and the Canyonero, from the basic outline to the color. One might say that it is simply the Simpson’s wagon on a truck frame and with an angled front fascia.
By the way, my car is a Ford.
How very cromulent, John.
Top of the line in utility sports / Unexplained fires are a matter for the courts!
Real trucks have more axles if you dont need a commercial licence it isnt a truck, just a ute
Never had a truck until I was 50 years old. I would borrow my Dad’s 75 Chevy Stepside. Good looking trucks that were real popular but I found the bed too small and the driving position just awful. I bought a 66 Ford F250 Camper Special with a 360 (352 was swapped out ) with auto and power brakes, no power steering. I really liked the styling with the wheel arch/ fender look and the great hood and cabin style. Somehow there was a lot more room between me and the steering wheel unlike the Chevy. I bought it from the second owner who had owned it for around thirty years, it was originally a U Haul service truck. I found that everyone loves old trucks and it was always a conversation starter. .I needed a reliable truck and bought a new stripper F150 which I really like. It’s a six, a girl’s truck. I like the driving characteristics but I prefer to drive one of my Mustangs If I don’t need to carry anything.
The large rear window option is very rare, I think it was only available in the uni-bodies. Slick looking truck, but not practical from a manufacturing standpoint. Very rust prone and yes overloading could cause enough body flex to bind the door. Didn’t see these as really less ‘manly’ than other trucks, certainly moreso than the 1997-2003 F-150’s. Taurus styling cues had no business on a truck.
When I went east to college in 1983, my university had a whole fleet of support trucks – all dark green, with orange, hand-painted lettering on the side. Most were 10 years old or less, but there were two oddballs – a ’61 F-150 and a Dodge A-100 pickup. Both seemed to be parked off in the boonies, like someone was trying to hide/preserve them.
I always loved the integral bed, but understand why it was so short-lived. The join with the old Styleside bed wasn’t pretty, but it came off much better than Studebaker’s hasty marriage of the Champ cab with Dodge’s old bed the same year.
Paul, I wonder if your thoughts on the source of the rear window are an unconscious memory that the Alexander Brothers used a ’62 Ford wagon tailgate window as the windshield on their Dodge Deora showcar?
Incidentally, my school also had a pair of clapped out ’74 Vega Kammback’s as utility vehicles – I spent a summer driving one or the other of these wrecks when I worked for the University architect. They seem to have a lot more money now, and such eccentricities are no longer tolerated.
No doubt reflected in the tuition bills then vs. now.
The “cab” of the Deora II was from a ~1996 Ford Taurus wagon. The “windshield” was the back window of the Taurus.
One of the things I like about old trucks, besides the styling, is the solid axle leaf spring front suspension. I wish trucks still had it. It is extremely tough, and makes camber/caster adjustments unnecessary. (as did Ford’s Twin I Beam) A truck is not a car, and does not need to ride one. I cringe everytime I thing of all those old trucks that were cut up and had a Mustang II front suspension installed. There is nothing wrong with being crude when it comes to trucks. IMO, the simpler, more basic and primitive a vehicle is, the better it is. A ’50s truck with solid axles and a rust free body and frame could last hundreds of years. Everything else is replaceable.
I see your point, but today’s trucks drive pretty dang nice and are far safer. For 99% of what they do, it’s a good compromise. My biggest issue on new trucks are the deep chins that cut into ground clearance.
…The air dams of which are removable, provided you don’t mind paying the (oh horrors!) .5 MPG penalty for decreased aerodynamics.
EVERY time Ford restyles their full sized truck it more and more resembles a Tonka Toy Truck.
Ford must employ stylists with extremely small….tools.
Oh and that’s only Ford? Not Dodge? Not Toyota?
When you’ve run out of legitimate comments, immediately fixate on size of the other person’s genitals! It never fails!
Dodge started it in 1994. Ford and Chevy kept it going in 2004, and Toyota jumped on the bandwagon in 2007.
FWIW, a larger front end is necessary for …something. Maybe it’s a larger radiator for better cooling. (I know the 08-10 Super Duty radiator is bigger than any we’ve ever had.) There’s almost no empty space under any hood anymore.
Anyone who thinks those late 1950’s/1960’s pick trucks are “cool” just might change their minds if they had it for their only means of transportation today, in 2015.
only the girly-men who do not still drive vehicles w/o air conditioning and power steering
“Anyone who thinks those late 1950’s/1960’s pick trucks are “cool” just might change their minds if they had it for their only means of transportation today, in 2015.”
Maybe not ~
Last year my faithful 1969 Chevy C/10 short bed stepside rusted out , I drove it hard and used it for it’s designed duty : light hauling and daily commuting & long distance trips whenever I had the time (Dallas to L.A. & multi – day Road Rallies for example) , I’m in the middle of rebuilding it from the frame up because I have access to modern trucks but don’t cotton to them .
If I have to feed and fix it , I get to choose what I drive .
I have and use (Religiously) seat belts and I’m adding AC because old fat guys like it .
Other than that , it’s be just another old dusty Work Truck going on down the road .
It’s a 6 Banger and used to get nearly 20 MPG in Open Highway use in spite of burning copious amounts of oil .
Automatic and power steering too .
it’s _not_ ‘ Macho ‘ by any measure , it’s just what I prefer to drive .
(how do I invert this picture ?!)
Here ya go, Nate…. 🙂
Thank you .
That was taken @ Newcomb’s Ranch in the San Gabriel Mountains ~ it really looks nice but had rust holes in the cowl & firewall I could put my hand through…
Nice truck. I came so close to restoring my 70 C10 longbed stripper 307 V8. I still miss it, but just had no place to store it. A new truck was the way I went. Only time I ever bought new. It would have cost as much to restore and upgrade. Still wish I kept it for future possible restoration. But, I bought in 76 for $1000. Sold in 06 for $1500. New truck minus $1500 was $16500.
Most old trucks/cars are “cool” for use as daily transportation, if they are mechanically sound. If pieces fall off as you are driving down the road, that’s not cool. If the steering and brakes barely work that’s not cool. I enjoy my ’64 Fairlane immensely as a daily driver during the short period we have each year called winter. During the 8 month summer, it is not cool. But all it needs to make it so is A/C. It’s not that expensive, a local shop will install a new 134a system for $2500. And with an aftermarket cruise control, it could even be used for cross country driving (if you replaced the glasspacks with real mufflers)
Any old vehicle that you like (and can get parts for) makes a great daily driver if you are willing to put the parts and work into it. I would avoid the rare high dollar stuff even if you can afford it, it has value that goes beyond monetary, and cannot be replaced if totaled. But there are a lot of old cars and trucks out there that will never be worth a fortune, and they are a great way to get into driving an old car on a routine basis. No they don’t have the conveniences of modern cars, but they are a lot more fun if you like them. Even today, I do not have a clothes dryer, dishwasher, garbage disposal, or smart phone. I grew up without them and did just fine. I also grew up with old cars with no problems. In fact I enjoyed working on them, and the sound and feel they had, that today’s cars don’t.
Late to the party….but here you go. My late 1962 non-integrated f250. Along with a 67 trailer I picked up to pull behind. Cheers.
VERY nice ! class is never too late to arrive .
V8 or i6 ? .
223 i6 seems to be a 61 engine…not so odd I guess…seeing as it has a bed from 60
Did Ford build a “wrong bed” in 1961 or did they discover the problem during that model year and offer the wrong bed later in the year? Did the ’61 4×4 and 3/4 ton trucks have the wrong bed? I don’t understand why Ford didn’t design a proper separate bed for the ’62 model year. The wrong bed Ford did indeed look awkward, sort of like the Studebaker Champ pickup trucks.
I don’t find this truck feminine at all. I see it as a honest, hard working, no frills truck with handsome, stylish looks with a bit of early ’60s flair. These are some of the very best looking trucks ever built. I’d take a short bed unibody with a six and a 3 on the tree. No options, although power steering and brakes would tame the beast quite a bit. And make no mistake, these were beasts to drive. Dad had a ’66 with a transplanted 351 Windsor and a 3 speed manual on the column that I drove when I was a kid (I think he got rid of it before I turned 16 because I don’t remember ever driving it by myself. I almost wrecked it once. I made a left hand turn out of a gas station onto a 2 lane street and I turned the steering wheel too far to the left and had to quickly turn it back to the right to avoid hitting a car coming the opposite way. The steering must have been 20 turns from lock to lock. Power steering and a tighter ratio would be welcome in taming this brute and would make it safer. Power discs on the front would also make it less hazardous. These trucks were really manly. They weren’t for the faint of heart. Compared to this spartan, no frills truck the new F150 is a feminized, easy to drive wuss truck. Nothing feminine about this truck.
You’ve almost figured out my joke. 🙂
Are you sure the 262 was available in the F100? My sources say that it was only available in larger trucks.
Hah, that original TTAC article was posted in 2010!
We must be having fun here, because time is surely flying…
This coming March it will have been 10 years since my first CC. Time to move on to other things…
Well you know what they say about all good things. Even Shafer is planning to rid himself of the Galaxie.
Just not writing up so many old cars, for me anyway. It’s getting a bit…old. 🙂
I was never primarily an “old car guy”; my interest has always been more in the current industry. I’m a frustrated auto-exec wanna’ be.
I love how the years roll by in this conversation.
If only there was a way to combine the simplicity and styling of the old trucks with the capability of a new truck. Maybe Singer could realize my dream if I won the lottery.
I think many of the design elements that you take exception with are form following function. Maybe the modern working man is expected to accomplish more, faster, across more areas of discipline than the blue collar guys from way back? Sure, there are the people who like to pose, but for the people that use these things, they’re pretty great. And the posers just offer the opportunity for the less financially endowed to jump in the game with a nice used truck when they’re done posing.
PostScript: I do agree the new Chevy is hideous and quite obviously takes some “style” points at the sake of function.
Interesting point on Poser purchases becoming used truck opportunities, but the reality is that the higher buy-in costs still show up in the secondary market.
You buy a new truck at $70,000 and sell 5 years later at 50% depreciation. That means the second buyer still pays $35,000 for it. For $35K, you can buy a nicely equipped brand new Accord, Sonata, Fusion, or Malibu. With the warranty in effect. And not with 75,000 miles on the odometer already.
Trucks used to sticker at a price LOWER than many sedans. They were cheap! Even up to the 1990’s, you could get a small pickup for less than the cost of a mid-sized sedan. Then, the whole market changed, with CAFE and tax implications making full size trucks the easy profit margin leader.
That’s true, it’s a gamble, and the price/value equation depends on the economy as a whole, and new vs used values. It’s also important to remember the high resale value also carries over when it’s time to sell, if you take care of the vehicle reasonable well. It’s not like used luxury cars where the value drops off a cliff. Look at CL for nice 300k mile ~2000 model 7.3 Ford King Ranches or a comparable 5.9 Dodge . Time will tell if that stays true for the newer, more complicated trucks.
There are still inexpensive new trucks out there. Granted they aren’t the loss leader Nissan hardbody or Isuzu trucks of yesteryear, but Nissan makes a Frontier that stickers under $20k.
Keep in mind that modern pickups, with their loud statements, are also covering part of this former popular market as well…
A lot of men’s idea of what makes a man a man seems to have changed as well. I have a blue collar job, not career, just a job. I’ve been like a frog jumping from lilipad to lilipad as the good jobs have gone away, and what I have now is barely adequate. (I was always in liquid chemical manuacture. Jobs haven’t all gone to China but mostly Texas) Until recently my shift for three years was midnights. Well out in my car during lunch (that’s where the most comfy seat is) I often watch the gas station across the street. Interesting characters in Chicago’s south side. Well one night I saw a teenage girl being harassed by a guy. I started to honk my horn and flash my lights to let him know he was being watched. That wasn’t noticed at all, so I pulled out of the plant and drove over to them. By the time the powered gate had opened for me they had walked out of view. It ended up just being a squabble of a couple and the girl said she was okay, so I turned around and came back to the plant. My point is that two of my coworker guys were also in their cars and only briefly looked up from their phones. Both of these guys are younger athletic types. I am old and fat and have a bad back. I am the last one who should be doing that sort of thing. But it never occurred to me to not because I think that’s what men are supposed to do. It really hit home how men are different than I think they used to be. Now they moisturize and do their hair and look pretty. And they drive flashy trucks with lots of bling. They seem selfish. Has it always been this way? By the way, I was SO glad that I didn’t have to get out of the car. That guy would have squished me! Took half the night for my nerves to calm down. (My wife insists I not take that risk again)
Old trucks are cool, and the Ford F100 unibody was certainly unique and a looker. But as a modern “mega-size” over-chromed, small-Johnson-compensating Tonka Toy pickup owner (’15 F150 Lariat 5.0 CC 4×4), I have to take issue with many of the comments here disparaging modern trucks. Have any of y’all actually spent time driving and using a modern pickup? Yes, they are large, heavy beasts. Yes, they’ve gotten pretty pricey. Yes, they sport too much chrome, too much grille, too much mucho-macho. Fine, whatever. They’re also mega-capable, uber-comfortable, and omni-usable. I’m a life-long muscle car and sports car guy, but I find myself defaulting to my pickup almost to the exclusion sometimes of my other “fun” cars, because it’s such a damn fine all-around vehicle to drive. It never breaks (only maintenance so far have been oil changes and tire rotations), or breaks a sweat. It’s even pretty fun to drive (drives “smaller” than its size and mass would suggest, and that 5.0 sounds, and goes, sooo damned nice). It does nearly everything, and does it well. Okay, maybe I wouldn’t enter it in an SCCA autocross, and parking can sometimes be a bit of a chore, but as a daily driver for what I need and want, to my mind it has no peer (and you can insert any other full size truck brand you want here for that matter, as they’re all about equally capable). It hauls – and hauls the mail. It tows. It goes. All in quiet comfort (love those heated & cooled seats!), and with relatively decent gas mileage (YMMV) + 36 gal tank yielding up to 600 miles of range, depending. When my wife and I drive 7+ hours to visit our son in OKC we take my truck…nothing else in the stable is as quiet, comfortable and confident on the road, while hauling whatever we may need to haul (here’s a little secret: with these big crew cab trucks the rear seat area serves double duty as a voluminous enclosed/lockable storage box. Who needs a topper?!). So, you can keep nursing along your old clapped out farm trucks… God love ya (God help ya). I do respect ya. And while you’re fiddling with fiddly points or adjusting the idle mixture on the carb, I’ll happily go about my daily business looking like I need to compensate for something whilst in the comfort and competence of a big-ass modern ‘Murican pick-em-up. Thankyouverymuch.
During the summer I worked construction, I noticed that truck size seemed to indicate job hierarchy. The lower you were, the bigger the truck. As a newb, I drove a Ford 10yd dump truck. More experienced guys got smaller 5 yd dumps to pull the trailer their backhoe or dozer. The maintenance guy – one of the highest paid on the crew – had a utility body truck. The foreman had the smallest vehicle of all, a regular cab 3/4t. pickup. Of course, back that yard when we got into our own vehicles to go home, everything got reversed again.