5 Reasons Why I’ll Always Own a Pickup Truck

Pickup trucks have exploded in popularity in the last twenty years and manufacturers have raced to meet the demands of the expanding market to include construction pros as well as millennial families, Gen Z couples, overlanders, and adventure-seeking singles.

silverado ZR2 pickup truck

My first pickup truck was a 1991 Ford Ranger and since then I have owned a 2001 and 2008 F-150. All three trucks treated me well, but the Ranger started my love affair with trucks.

I’m a Gen X family man and here are five reasons why I’ll always have a pickup truck.

The Ability to Tow and Haul Almost Anything

Pickup trucks mean freedom. Not just in the “Hey I’m an American and I love pickup trucks and beer!”, kind of way. But in the ability to truly transport all manner of things.

With a pickup truck you don’t bat an eye when you need to buy five bags of soil or move a piece of furniture. You really have the ability to haul and tow almost anything.

The large the truck the more capabilities you have. Midsize trucks these days like the Ford Ranger, Toyota Tacoma, and Chevy Colorado, are much larger than my old Ranger. You can fit a lot more cargo inside the extended cabins and the beds are spacious.

Midsize trucks are also able to tow as much as most large SUVs which means you can bring a trailer, boat, or ATV on your next adventure.

The expandability of bed racks has increased the usability of a truck as you can now mount a rooftop tent, surfboards, or cargo boxes to the top of a rack and still have an open bed to transport even more goodies.

If you need to step up and tow larger trailers and boats there is a truck to fit your needs.

Trucks are More Comfortable Than You Think

Modern pickup trucks are a dream to drive and the ride can be as comfortable as any SUV or crossover. It all depends on how you setup your suspension for most factory trucks are designed to be driven on the road 90 to 100 percent of the time so the all-season tires, plush suspension, and pinpoint handling will make driving them a breeze.

The interiors of today’s trucks have all the bells and whistles of any vehicle you’ll find on the road. Even the low and midgrade trucks are equipped with standard equipment that was considered premium just five years ago.

The ride height of a pickup truck can be a drawback for some but I consider it a huge plus. Yes, you need to step up into a taller vehicle, but side steps can make that much easier.

Trucks are Reliable

Trucks like the Ford F-150 have an impressive reliability record. They are built to withstand the rigors of jobsites, so trips the mall and school dropoff are handled with ease.

Check out Consumer Reports and compare trucks to SUVs and you’ll see similar build quality across the board. Chevy, Ford, and Ram can’t afford to deliver junk as the competition is fierce and one misstep can mean years of reputation repair.

Trucks are Fun to Modify

I’ve never had a new truck. In fact, every truck I’ve owned has been at least eight years old with roughly 80,000 miles on it by the time I’ve taken ownership. I’ve been able to spot trouble-free trucks that are considered near the end of their usable life for the first owner. It’s really that the current owner didn’t want to do the necessary 80,000-100,000 maintenance.

Getting a truck that has been regularly taken care of with oil changes and maintenance is a great deal. If that means I need to do the brakes, ball joints, or take care of wear and tear items, I’m happy to do that to get a great truck.

Older trucks that have been in the market for a few years will have a lot of aftermarket parts and accessories. Especially the Ford F-150 which is the best-selling vehicle in the USA.

There are a ton of fun things you can do to improve the performance and looks of your truck. Most of my mods have skewed towards performance both on and off-road. I installed a K&N cold air intake and replaced the muffler with a Flowmaster 50. Both add a bit of sound which I like but also allow the engine to breathe.

But the first mod I usually make is to the wheels and tires. For my F-150 I picked up some Goodyear Wrangler Ultraterrain ATs mounted to 20″ alloy wheels from a 2016 F-150. These are taller than stock so I had to trim the fender well a bit but I like the aggressive look and feel which is great for trips out to the ranch.

Factory wheels from previous generation trucks usually fit best and I’ve had great success finding “takeoffs” on Craigslist and Offerup. A lot of people buy new trucks and immediately remove the factory wheels and replace them with new aftermarket styles. I can be there to scoop them up brand new!

I’ve done the same with my 99 Land Cruiser which has wheels from a 2018 Tundra.

Trucks are Just Plain Fun!

Riding in the back of a pickup truck is a thrill. We don’t do this much and only at low speeds around the ranch, but there is nothing better than jumping in the back and feeling the wind in your face and seeing nature for what it truly is.

With a pickup truck you can really buy the largest Halloween decoration you can think of or get the biggest Christmas tree on the lot without giving it a second thought.

The fun factor is an underrated quality of owning a pickup truck and one that people should talk about more.

I hope I’ve convinced you to at least give a pickup truck a closer look the next time you are considering another boring SUV or crossover. You’ll thank me later.

One of our favorite new trucks this year is the Chevy Silverado ZR2 which stacks up nicely against the Ram Rebel and Ford Tremor. Check it out!

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