What happened to the compact truck?

Discussion in 'The Okie Corral' started by PBCounty, Apr 11, 2012.

  1. PBCounty

    PBCounty

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    For twenty years or more they were popular and seemingly everyone (Ford, Chevy, Dodge, Toyota, Isuzu, Mitsubishi, Nissan, Mazda) had one to offer. Every kid I knew I had one as their first vehicle, and every household I was familiar with had one in the #3 position if pops didn't have a "real truck" as a daily driver. So why did they decline from so many offerings (and for a time, they were actually different vehicles - not just rebadge jobs) to no offerings at all? Did our tastes really change that much, that quickly?
     
    Last edited: Apr 11, 2012
  2. All Pro Sports Hero

    All Pro Sports Hero

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    Gone the way of the dodo bird. It's too bad.

    I still keep an '03 Tacoma, for just this reason.
     

  3. Glock30Eric

    Glock30Eric .45 ACP

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    Federal Reserve's fault because they encouraged people to take a loan more than they could afford so they went for a bigger truck.
     
  4. VELO

    VELO

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    I drive an old Ford Ranger and love having the small rig in the garage. I don't tow or haul big loads so it works perfectly for me.

    ETA: Thanks Glock30Eric!
     
    Last edited: Apr 11, 2012
  5. PBCounty

    PBCounty

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    I've always been a fan of smaller vehicles in general....and I'm a truck guy who wants / needs four wheel drive. I like being able to pop in and out of any parking spot, being able to reach across the interior and being able to fit in a tight spot on a canal bank or a job site. I can't be alone here.....yet these things keep getting more bloated.
     
  6. FAS1

    FAS1

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    They are all over Mexico starting with their version of the El Camino. Seems like they would do well here with fuel so expensive. I could use one for running around in and hauling misc. stuff. Toyota Helux crew cabs are everywhere too. All are Plain Jane and don't have much room. We want everything to be luxurious and expensive here so there is no real market yet. Just look how the Tacoma has grown over the years.

    [​IMG]
     
  7. Old School

    Old School

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    Dang fine question. I had a 95 Ranger that lasted 15 years. I had to replace the clutch around 9 years old, the power steering pump a few years later. Other than that it was GTO and maintenance.

    I sold it because I needed something bigger and 4WD for hunting and family trips. But I was shocked that Ford wasn't featuring the Ranger when gas hit $4 last time around. The 2wd 4 cyl is an excellent vehicle for first time drivers.
     
  8. el_jewapo

    el_jewapo

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    I've owned 2 vehicles in my life (not counting wifes cars), both of them 4WD Toyota Tacomas. I don't think the first one was called a Tacoma, same thing though.
     
  9. gwalchmai

    gwalchmai Lucky Member

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    I think there's less profit in small trucks. Especially in small, reliable trucks that you keep for 15 - 20 years.

    <-- former owner of a '78 Toyota SR-5 Longbed
     
  10. SC Tiger

    SC Tiger As God as my witness, I thought turkeys could fly.

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    The Chevrolet, GMC, Isuzu, Toyota and Nissan models grew into mid-size trucks. Dodge and Mitsubishi turned theirs into the Dakota and whatever Mitsu is calling theirs. I don't know if Ford even still makes the Ranger but everyone I knew that had one had problems. Usually nothing major but little pain-in-the-#ss stuff (buzzers that wouldn't shut off, engine warning lights, etc). I think a new one is in the works though.

    Like everything else they got bigger because everyone wanted a bigger truck. Look at the number of diesel Ford Superduties and Ram 3500 trucks on the road (usually with the exhaust sticking out the bed). How many people that drive those do you really think need them? Especially if the bed is so high that no fifth wheel will connect and you have to throw cargo into it.

    I understand the exhaust out the bed if you are launching a boat but why do you need an extension ladder to get into the d#mn thing?

    Someone asked about a small, efficient diesel-powered pickup a few weeks ago. Unfortunately anything diesel-powered in the US (outside of some Volkswagon offerings) is the size of a tank and designed to be able to pull a locomotive. Fine if you need that sort of thing but...
     
  11. SC Tiger

    SC Tiger As God as my witness, I thought turkeys could fly.

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    I think the Hilux is the same as the Tocoma that is sold here but may be the older version.

    I think that VW would sell well in the US for a reasonable price tag, assuming it has strong enough rear springs to carry a reasonable load (the old El Caminos - admittedly a Chevy offering - were notorious for having weak rear springs that would sag under light loads) and the efficiency numbers are there. Another big seller IMO would be the Holden Maloo (think hot-rod El Camino with a Corvette engine) though efficiency-wise it wouldn't be that great.
     
  12. VELO

    VELO

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    I've thought long and hard about dropping a small diesel in my Ranger. In the long run I think it'd be more work than it would be worth, but it sure would be cool!
     
  13. BEER

    BEER bad example

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    i used to a keep an s-10 as my daily when i didn't need the full size silverado for towing or hauling large materials. now that you mention it i realize how much i miss that little go kart. i might have to shop around and find another one.
     
  14. RichJ

    RichJ

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    You know? Speaking of which... I'd love to have a 2013 Chevy El Camino with 4 wheel drive! :hearts:
     
  15. The Machinist

    The Machinist Please! Please! No more!

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    It's a shell game the manufacturers play with CAFE standards imposed by the government. By not making compacts for sale in the US, it's easier for them to remain in compliance. Once again, the US federal government negatively impacts all of us.
     
  16. glockdoc21

    glockdoc21

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    Have you seen how fat most people are? Walmart is filled w/ giant vehicles because the drivers would crush a civic/ranger. I'm 6'1 and I my ranger is very comfortable, but I've had some overweight passengers that almost got stuck in the thing. I looked at the offerings from the big 3 truck manufacturers (ford, gmc and toyota :) ) when I got my truck and I was amazed at the jump in cost from say a colorado to a comparable silverado and especially a tacoma to a tundra. I opted for the 25mpg stripped ranger and I'm loving it.
     
    Last edited: Apr 11, 2012
  17. Dennis in MA

    Dennis in MA Get off my lawn

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    Chebby doesn't make the Colorado anymore???

    I find my 06 Tundra too big, but a recent-model-year Tacoma is practically the same size. :(

    Thankfully, I have several years left in this truck.
     
  18. PBCounty

    PBCounty

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    They do but that's not a compact to me.....and isn't it considered a mid-size? I could be wrong about the official designation.
     
  19. PBCounty

    PBCounty

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    These little things were badass local scooters when equipped with 4X4:

    [​IMG]
     
  20. Nestor

    Nestor Lean & Mean

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    What happened?
    Exactly the same thing like with the "M" size clothing...and "M" size here is more like "XL" in Europe.
    I have such a hard time to find "M" size anywhere...I mean most of the stuff they selling is starting at XL level.
    Small trucks were too small for the average "American size" human IMHO.