Inflation with pick-up trucks

Posted On: Tuesday - March 15th 2022 12:47PM MST
In Topics: 
  Websites  Cars  Economics  Americans  Inflation

The preposition in our post's title here may may our readers wonder. Isn't it "Inflation of pick-up trucks", as in a discussion of the recent increasing size of Americans' pick-up trucks? Or, is it "Inflation in pick-up trucks", as in inflation in the prices them. We will rant on the former and mention the latter, but the idea of this post is to discuss the effect of recently increasing* inflation on those drivers with these big-ass pick-up trucks.

This may be one of those posts that will piss off a number of readers to the point of never coming back here for our elucidation of stupidity. People don't like some random rightwing ranter dissing their choice of vehicle. I! GET! THAT! However, I will note here that I have friends who drive big-ass pick-up trucks. The one I speak of is not much the object of this post, since he can well afford to have bought his brand new one with cash**, one of the big GMCs, for what I recall was $50,000. He can well afford to feed it too. So, keep in mind the caveats I'll insert as to who I'm either worried about or, should I say, of whom I'm really wondering about his mind-set.

There've always been some big pickups around, used on the farm, ranch or by those in trades which require hauling a lot of stuff. I don't know when it because the thing to just have a pick-up truck as one's personal vehicle even without any particular good use for it, but I'd say it was the middle 1980s. That's when I'd see those new model small Nissans and Toyotas driven by office workers and such. So as not to be just a complete polemicist here, I did look up some US sales numbers. The following graph jives with my memory.

"WTH?!", the reader might readily exclaim, "that was only a small rise".Yes, but the category "light truck" includes vans and SUVs along with pick-up trucks My memory, which usually serves me well, is that that middle 1980s bubble was for those small pick-ups (gas was till high, but on the way down), while the rise from the early 1990s was of the SUVs, starting with those Isuzu Troopers, Jeep Cherokees, and Chevy Suburbans.

Since gasoline has been relatively cheap and also stable in price since the big ramp up from 1999 through 2008, the REALLY BIG TRUCKS seem to have risen up from novelty vehicles to standard issue. People have the big ones that tower over sedans and even more so over sports cars, quite dangerous for the latter especially, in a collision. Some of them look like they'd need a ladder to get into! Some even have those duallies on the rear too. (Is that really for spreading the load, as on a bigger, working truck, or is it for looks?)

Hey look, if you're out there hauling hay bales, or carrying cinder blocks and bricks, pulling a horse trailer, sure, knock yourself out. Otherwise I do wonder whether the sales of these things is for show-off value. Are Americans all so well-off still? You could have fooled me... well, until I see a quarter of the parking lot filled with these things hanging into the nearby spaces.**** Maybe, I'm wrong, but I'm not. (h/t Hotel California-era Eagles)

What about the gas to feed these new big trucks? When searching for information on the gas mileage of these behemoths, I came across a cool site called Fuelly that has gas mileage distribution graphs for loads of vehicles. This is more than just a web site, as it's another of what I'll dub here UPC (User Provided Content) organizations. One can sign up*** and enter one's mileage readings and fuel amounts after gassing up. It's a cool idea, I gotta say. The users, since maybe they can't use calculators, or simply like to have an app for everything they do in their lives, get out information and nice recording, storage, and graphical output of how their vehicles are doing. The website gets traffic by providing a service of accumulation and crunching that information from those users who've joined to give long-term, multiple vehicle averages of mileage for each those many different vehicles for everyone to view. What's nice is that, rather than relying on opinion (as with reviewer content) or lots of erroneous data, since each "member" has in interest in getting a good fuel mileage number, he'll be careful to put in accurate info.

Well, that was a hell of a digression (but a cool idea!), so I'll note that, though there are many more gas-saving features (cylinders that get put in stand-by mode, etc.) realistic mileage estimates are in the high teens at best, though YMMV (HA!!) At $5/gallon gas, that starts to get expensive. Let me not start with that hundred dollar fill-up talk, simply because that's not of much use, when there's no ONE tank size. One may indeed encounter a $100 fill-up now, with a 25 gallon gas tank that is just below 1/4 on the gauge, and over that in California.

It'd be more useful to make a few calculations on the costs for big-ass truck drivers who have regular 5 day/week jobs that live out in exurbs. Lots of people live that way - it may be closer to the norm than any other life style. Let's take a 15 mile trip each way to work with 4 other 20 mile round trips during the week. At 18 mpg, being generous, and still $4.50/g, that's 230 miles, 12.8 gallons, and $57.5 bucks weekly. Since a working month has a couple of more commutes, we're talking about $250 in gas money monthly. Maybe the wife doesn't need that big truck to show off with, so she drives a different show-off vehicle that gets 25 mpg, maybe doesn't go as far to work, and with trips to shuttle the kids around just adds on another 50 bucks. Then, there's the occasional 500 mile round-trip outing to get to the beach, the mountains, or the extended family's place. That'll be a $300 to $400 monthly gasoline bill.

Back to the truck itself. I did a cursory search for the price of these things, and I'd say the range of $35 to $55 thousand is what drivers are paying for these things new, without extreme option packages. They are not your 2000 Ford Rangers, which, though I haven't owned one, are one of my favorite models, looks- and functionality-wise. I'll have to to price inflation of the trucks elsewhere, as I have done no shopping in my life for ANY new vehicle save one***** and never have bought one.

Americans are stretching payment schedules out fo 7 years now! That should bring the payments down, right? Well even at the lower end, at $40,000, and an interest rate of 2%, one they may be offering, thanks to that most generous Federal Reserve Bank, I come MoneyChimp comes up with monthly payments of $560!

A family with one of these behemoth or any gas guzzler for that matter, using it as a regular driver, will pay a thousand bucks monthly for use, but that doesn't include the big insurance, property taxes, and oh, the other car! (Hopefully the other has somehow been paid off, and I am not even counting maintenance for the new vehicle - you gotta do oil changes and such, at the least.) You ain't getting away without $1,200 monthly for transportation, for 7 long years. How do most Americans think they can continue to live like this? That's pretty much the only point of this post.

PS: BTW, I should have done the gas cost calculation using the average American vehicle yearly mileage of 12,000 miles that I've seen in various places. My estimate doing rectal extraction and this quick calculation of my own turned out to be using 11,960 miles. Man, I'm good.

* Peak Stupidity has been well aware of the general level of price inflation in the American economy for years, increasing annually at a 4-5% PSIPI (Peak Stupidity Inflation Post Index), compounded. There are quite a few posts now with our Inflation topic key, most written well before the "I did that!" era.

** It's more a matter of cash flow/financial strategy, so I don't know for sure if he did buy it cash.

*** Honestly, as much as I appreciate the idea and of the participation, signing up for things in general is just something I'm not inclined to do, much less the giving out of information to strangers. (They probably don't need VIN's or really anything, so likely there's no real privacy worry. and it'd be nice to help.) I also can do my own calculations without needing a web site to do it for me.

**** I will note that back after the time of the gas "crises", there were all kinds of efforts to punish people for driving bigger vehicles, such as the making of smaller parking spaces.

***** I came close, but it was the property tax I'd be paying that sealed the deal, well lack thereof.

Adam Smith
Wednesday - March 16th 2022 11:27AM MST
PS: Hello again,

How about the “National Inclusion Gas Guzzler Edict to Requisition Personal Liquid Equity Affecting Sainted Ethnicities”?

Adam Smith
Wednesday - March 16th 2022 10:59AM MST
PS: Why are new cars so heavy?

Modern vehicles are required to be fitted with a variety of safety oriented technology (anti-lock brakes, stability control and tire-pressure-monitoring systems, etc.) and equipment (air bags,laminated glass, door intrusion beams, etc.). While these safety features are obviously welcomed they do add weight to the vehicle.

Convenience features aren't new; cars have always been fitted with luxury items. But modern vehicles, even entry-level models, are typically fitted with an overflow of features that make driving easier and more convenient. Consumers today desire a full complement of power and luxury equipment (heated/cooled seats, sound deadening, rear climate control, etc.) as well as the latest technologies (Bluetooth connectivity, infotainment systems, real-time navigation, etc.). Again,the trade off for added convenience is weight-and in some cases, plenty it.

The additional expense of added weight doesn't just stop at the pump in terms of increased fuel costs. As Newton noted ("an object in motion tends to stay in motion"), a heavier vehicle also requires larger brakes, bigger tires and a sturdier suspension, all of which counterproductively add more weight. Burdened by additional weight,these components tend to wear out more quickly compared to their counterparts on a lighter vehicle, and, for the manufacturer, which must pass on increased manufacturing costs to the consumer, as oversized parts cost more than smaller components.

Or, at least that's how Jeff Youngs describes it for JD Power.

Adam Smith
Wednesday - March 16th 2022 10:53AM MST
PS: Good afternoon,

I used to have a neighbor who had a fancy new Ford F150, with a fancy payment ($840 per month!) and, I would assume, a fancy insurance payment and ad valorem tax to go with it. (This truck was like $55,000 new.)

I tried to explain to him that he could save a bunch of money by buying a nice, older, low mileage pickup, probably for around the same price as the down payment. He commuted about 35 or 40 miles each way to work each day and his truck spent a lot of time in the parking lot at work roasting in the Georgia sun as he worked long hours to afford the fancy payments. The depreciation on his new fancy truck must have been huge.

But somehow, having a shiny new truck was important to his image, or something. He was even getting a bit mad that I would recommend not having a fancy new truck with a big fancy payment. I'm not sure who he was trying to impress riding around in a truck he could barely afford.

Then, one night, he got drunk, and got in a fight with his bitch ass wife, and crashed that truck into a tree. The fancy insurance did pay to have it fixed, but not long after that he traded that truck in on a new, shiny F150 of a different color with a bigger engine and, I assume, a higher payment. (Maybe the crashed truck was underwater? And, I mean, if you're already paying $840 a month for a big fancy truck, what's $950 for a newer fancy truck? It just makes sense.)

Then, one day not too long after that, his bitch ass wife got mad at him about something (did I mention that his wife was a real bitch?) so she called the cops and turned him in for stealing copper and stuff from work. (He worked for Pike doing line work in a bucket truck. At some point he graduated from taking old ballasts and old wire to recycle to just grabbing brand new rolls of copper to recycle.)

So the cops arrested him and he lost his job. I don't know what happened to him after that, and I don't know how long he sat in the clink awaiting trial. But I would assume that without a job he likely lost his fancy truck as he could no longer afford the fancy truck payments. I'm not sure how hireable he is after losing his job for thievery. I know I wouldn't hire a known thief.

I do know that his bitch ass crackhead wife (did I mention that this bitch was also a crackhead?) sold off all his tools and guns and everything she could for pennies on the dollar so she could buy drugs. She left him as penniless as she could.

She moved out shortly after that and even stole the landlords out building as she left. (She had a flat bed come to take it away and the driver ran over the drain field for the septic tank leaving the landlord that repair bill too.)

Not sure there's a point to the story, other than I don't know why some people desire riding around in a fancy truck that they really can't afford.

He was a really nice guy, not too bright though, and I do hope he somehow landed on his feet.

Wednesday - March 16th 2022 7:12AM MST
Trains are not a good substitute even if the system is European-level. I have been in Italy in towns where the population takes the train to work - the streets are still full of cars during working hours (to a level that I thought insane).
The Alarmist
Wednesday - March 16th 2022 6:44AM MST

@Hail, In an ordinary year I would shell out something between €7k and €8k if I went to the office every workday ... heavy business travel might knock that back to around €5k.

Trains are not an acceptable option. I hate to admit it, but I hate trains. Too linear and two dimensional.
Wednesday - March 16th 2022 5:51AM MST
PS: I just read the Eric Peters article, Mr. Smith. I am also AMAZED at how heavy the new vehicles are, once he gave the numbers. I have never jacked up our fairly new vehicle, just driving it onto 4 2x12s to do the oil changes (surprisingly easy, compared to what I'd expected!).

What I wish he had done is give more info. on exactly where is that extra weight. Can it really just be supporting structure for the crumple zones? He had mentioned air-bags everywhere for other reasons - why the pillars are so damned wide that the block the view of a vehicle 50 ft away, and how a car gets economically totaled so easily if all 8 or 10 of them blow.

Anyway, thanks. It's just a coincidence that I wrote this one nearly the same time as his. I came at if from a sightly different angle, and I don't know any of the details, not being a car magazine reader. BTW, on my calculation in that unz comment, I got the $600 monthly with zero interest, because I used $50,000 as the price, not the $40,000 I used in this post.
Wednesday - March 16th 2022 5:09AM MST

The Alarmist:

"I drive circa 100 miles round trip on most days to get to the office, 500 miles r/t on weekends ... at European prices, it was already painful."

What do you estimate to be your yearly fuel cost on that kind of mileage?
Wednesday - March 16th 2022 4:51AM MST
PS: Oh, and don't give them any ideas, Mr. Hail, with your DIGE Act. We're going to need our own communities and economies to escape that type of thing. I am not in one yet, so can you wait?
Wednesday - March 16th 2022 4:48AM MST
PS: Alarmist, you wouldn't last but a day as a lawmaker... OK, at least as a lawnamer you wouldn't. I hope everyone here got those, especially the second one. Nice job!

Mr. Hail, I am so glad you asked:

First, "We all like trains."

Then: "Trains in the Orient vs. America"

The gist of it that this country is not laid out well for train transportation, except up and down that NE corridor. One more thing, that I admit came directly from either Steve Sailer or one his commenter is this:

The kind of Americans who would have a reason for long-distance train travel and do so, don't live downtown. Of course, that's because the CAN'T live downtown. In China they do and in LARGE numbers. If you have to first make a drive, any drive, then park, etc. rather than just walking or taking a city bus or subway ride right to the train terminal, it's just not worth it, time-wise compared to flying. This includes what happens on the other end too. I have a quick example with a time estimate comparison in that 2nd post - Los Angeles to Denver.
Wednesday - March 16th 2022 4:28AM MST

Have just heard that gasoline (petrol) prices this week exceed $10/gallon equivalent in Norway (converted from liters and currency) for the first time.

More typical price before Ukraine-War-Panic was $6 to $7. Over $7 was considered expensive there, afaict.
Wednesday - March 16th 2022 4:14AM MST

What is the Peak Stupidity policy position on trains?

I refer both to those like the US inter-city or inter-regional Amtrak network (whose shabby condition is rather an embarrassment by world standards...), to single metro-area systems (on the German "S-Bahn" model), even to subways, streetcars, anything like that.

The easy observation (maybe too simplistic) seems that for a society which still has a robust network of such things, a transportation-fuel-price jump would be much more manageable. (Home heating in countries with harsh winters is a tougher 'nut' to crack.)

It takes decades-long commitment. There is no 'off/on' button. The USA has not had any legitimate claim to having a viable network people might "fall back on" now in a very long time, I think over fifty years by now or more.

(Mr Alarmist and Mr Kief might have some ideas about this): The lack of viable train network, and the decrepit or poor-service conditions of those trains or systems that have survived, I imagine to be one of things most surprising to Europeans when they encounter America for the first time.

America was a world leader in the 19th-century railroad era. Now, well, there are countries with 1/10th the per-capita GDP which have much better systems...
Wednesday - March 16th 2022 4:09AM MST
PS: Here ya' go, Adam. It's from back in late Feb, in a reply to John Johnson, another Kung Flu panicker who is otherwise a pretty sharp guy. (I will never get that!)


Whole comment:
Yes, John. I just don’t get all men buying the huge pick-ups. Not only are people paying those big monthly payments, ~ $600 is what I come up with for 7 years of payments (at 0 interest), but when gas is at $5/G, it’ll be $100 a fill-up.* I wonder how they are going to like that.

Well, as Pincher Martin here tells me, we are just richer than freaking ever! So, what’s the problem?

BTW, I agree with you on about everything, Mr. J, other than the Kung Flu, about which I most certainly do not. I have a hard time wrapping my mind around this, anytime it happens.


* Say, a 25 G tank, as you don’t usually fill up from empty.

Ahaa! What a hypocrite I am, using the whole $100 a fill-up thing! However, I did that to show the kind of thing that gets said by people who FINALLY see the problem. They don't do all the numbers, which is not that hard - they could even use that cool site I mentioned - They just realize "hey, it took a whole fifty!" (for the Camry drivers) or "a whole hundred!" for the Big-Ass (Big-Assed?) truck drivers.
Wednesday - March 16th 2022 3:48AM MST
PS: No, I swear, I haven't yet read Eric Peter's article, Adam - that is, the one you linked or his site period for 5 years or so. I will read it shortly this morning. (I had that big truck image in my file for 2 or 3 years, but when I wrote a comment on unz with these simple cost numbers, it made me think now would be a good time for a whole post on this, using that truck image (just to save me a few minutes.

The reason I hadn't written the post back when I down/up - loaded the image is that I WAS thinking, "hey, this is bound to piss off some readers, including my friend with his big-ass truck". (Though I don't think he has time to read this blog.)

I'll point you all out to that unz comment in a whie.
The Alarmist
Wednesday - March 16th 2022 2:27AM MST

The cutesy title for the law would be

National Inclusion Gas Guzzler Act Protecting Liquidity Equity Affecting Sainted Ethnicities

Jay Z can be the national champion to get the word out.
The Alarmist
Wednesday - March 16th 2022 1:57AM MST

First car: ‘67 Chevy Impala ... you could see the fuel needle move when you punched it. It was a Panzer.

Fave car: ‘69 Camaro that I bought in Nebraska from a little old lady who inherited it from her hubby ... it had an FM converter the size of a toaster oven. I know for a fact that she drove it to church on Sundays, but cannot say it was only to church.

First new car: ‘85 Camaro. I drove that car to its demise in 1997, when a semi rolled over the front of it in the fifth moment in life where I cheated death.

As for the subsidised gas program, how about National Inclusion Gas Guzzler Equity Redistribution ?

I drive circa 100 miles round trip on most days to get to the office, 500 miles r/t on weekends ... at European prices, it was already painful. I need some of those Brandon “I did this” stickers for the fuel pumps here. Maybe I’ll put together a sticker with Macron, Baerbock, et al captioned “We did this.”
Adam Smith
Tuesday - March 15th 2022 11:09PM MST
PS: Me again...

“both our cars averages”...

What's better than winning a gold medal at the special olympics...

Adam Smith
Tuesday - March 15th 2022 10:38PM MST
PS: I hope everyone is having a wonderful evening...

“The closest I ever came” (???)
“The closest I've ever come”
“The newest car I ever purchased”

I'm so confused anymore...

Adam Smith
Tuesday - March 15th 2022 10:21PM MST
PS: ...

Adam Smith
Tuesday - March 15th 2022 10:10PM MST
PS: Good evening, everyone...

May the wind always be at your back and the sun always upon your face... etcetera, etcetera...

Mr. Hail wrote a comment, posted at 9:07 MST...

I too would not be surprised if such things happen...
Let's hope it does not come to pass...

Adam Smith
Tuesday - March 15th 2022 9:32PM MST
PS: Good evening, Mr. Hail,

I hope this message finds you well...
(🍻 Cheers to your health Kind Sir...)

I agree whole heartedly!

“it [higher gas prices] still represents a deadweight economic loss that puts downward pressure on the economy.”

That. It. Does...

Thank God I don't live in $7+ a gallon California, and that I do not travel as far as the average...
(7000 miles each year split between two cars. I am blessed!)

7000(miles) divided by 22(mpg) = 318(gallons) times $4.29 (which is what I paid for premium gas in town last week) = $1365 in gasoline for the cars for the year...

Not that it costs quite that much (yet), as some of our travels take us out of town, on to the highway, where we get 30 miles per gallon, and out of town where gas is a little cheaper... (Costco or RaceTrac usually have better deals on gas, if we are down that way...)(White county too...)

But... as you've mentioned... You know the thing...

I hope you have a great evening, Mr. Hail...

Tuesday - March 15th 2022 9:07PM MST


Will there be a Biden-Harris policy to subsidize gas for Blacks and Hispanics, to address systemic and historical inequities (or whatever)?

it could go like this:

Anyone showing a 23andMe-like test showing at least 25% Subsaharan African OR at least 40% Amerind can get the subsidy. A 50% discount on gas for those qualifying above the Subsaharan-threshold and a 33% discount for Hispanic-Mestizoes or Indios qualifying under the Amerind genetic threshold.

This would be done using a vaccine-pass-like system. The legislation could be called the D.I.G.E. Act (Diversity-Inclusion-Gasoline-Equity).

All those faking their DNA results whose real result is 95%-100% European shall be imprisoned and investigated for hate crimes. This will of course require a class of trained Racism Experts to monitor and investigate, who could be funded by a special federal surtax on 80%+ White zip codes, but the details can be worked out.

Beneficiaries of the D.I.G.E. system who are found to be illegibly buying gas to then re-sell to the genetically disfavored classes outside the D.I.G.E. pale, shall also be penalized.

How surprised would you be if this happened?
Adam Smith
Tuesday - March 15th 2022 9:02PM MST
PS: Lol...

“Regarding the great mileage cars of the past, I believe more than one of our commenters is an "Eric Peters Auto" site reader. I used to read and even occasionally comment sometime before I got on the unz site. Eric Peters would write about politics from a Libertarian POV, probably more than he'd write about cars.

I bring this up because I remember multiple posts of his in which he explained how cars were forced to get back heavier - safety equipment - negating some of the mileage gains made by the time of the Geo Metro. I know 2 people who have those still, BTW.”

Lol... What's your word for it... "eerily similar"...
I mean... (seriously...?)

I was sitting out on the porch, hanging with Mrs. Smith, sippin' a little wine, and I mentioned to her that both Eric peters and you, Mr. Moderator, had very similar posts today...

Honest... Tell the truth...

Did you read his blog today???
I know I did...

PS... My first car was a 1978 Chevy Luv...
True Story...

Tuesday - March 15th 2022 9:01PM MST

Adam Smith wrote:

"I'm really lucky. It's 4.8 miles each way to work and both our cars averages 22mpg around town (30hwy). Mrs. Smith and I average 7000 miles each year."

That sounds like an average (+/-) of 300 gallons of gasoline per year.

At California-March2022 levels @ $7/gallon, that's a yearly bill of $2100 for gasoline alone.

At the 2019 levels and in cheaper parts of the USA with gas @ $2.30, that's $700/year.

Difference: a $1400 deadweight loss between the two scenarios, holding driving equal. Double this to a $2800 deadweight loss for those driving at the higher, national-average rate.

There are a lot of people out there would cannot afford a hit of several thousand dollars, amount to an unknown-but-bad impact on a car-driving-dependent society. Even for those who can shift things around and make it work, as most can, it still represents a deadweight economic loss that puts downward pressure on the economy.
Tuesday - March 15th 2022 5:16PM MST
PS: Robert, you drove a hearse? Your real name isn't Neil Young, is it? Is that HIS real name even?

Regarding the great mileage cars of the past, I believe more than one of our commenters is an "Eric Peters Auto" site reader. I used to read and even occasionally comment sometime before I got on the unz site. Eric Peters would write about politics from a Libertarian POV, probably more than he'd write about cars.

I bring this up because I remember multiple posts of his in which he explained how cars were forced to get back heavier - safety equipment - negating some of the mileage gains made by the time of the Geo Metro. I know 2 people who have those still, BTW.
Tuesday - March 15th 2022 5:12PM MST
PS: Dieter, thanks for the Stones' reference. That's one of my favorites. Yeah, I guess the price of used ones will change accordingly, as the gas stays up in price. I have a friend who's glad he didn't sell his Honda hybrid a couple of years back when he was pondering it.

Mr. Blanc, agreed about those small trucks and I don't wanna give short shrift to the Chevy Luv's either. Datsun became NIssan in around '84 or so, by my recollection, and it was in 86/87 when they came out with the "hard body" models, said to be much better than the previous ones. I can vouch for that only on the side of the hard bodies - they are solid. They were very popular in the '80s and '90s. You also had those guys driving around with their pristine Toyotas with the "ota" painted out. That's when, IMO, people started driving them around whether they really used it as a truck or not.

I'll have more about all that in a follow-up post. I will say, once I had a pick-up, I wondered how you could live without one. OTOH, before that I used a sports car to haul plywood, bags of quickcrete, etc.
Tuesday - March 15th 2022 5:02PM MST
PS: Ha, Alarmist, that leads into the next post I'll get to on inflation - 5 and dime stores are long gone, but Dollar Trees may have to give up on that 1 dollar pricing. "Dollar don't grow on trees, you know." "Yeah, it wouldn't be worth picking them anyway."

Adam, that 12,000 a year was a nice round number, but I guess it's gone up 20%. (Having relatively cheap gas helps.) I was thinking about a "P.P.S" to the post saying that, not to be hypocritical, but I have one car that does worse than those trucks even on mileage, at least around town. However, I'm lucky if it gets 2,000 miles on it between yearly oil changes. I say lucky because I really want to drive it more. I don't need to, though.

Your story about the slightly soiled, errr, used, excuse me, PRE-OWNED '86 IROC is eerily similar to mine. It's carbureted though. I didn't get as good a deal as you, as it had 42,000 miles on it when I got it, but it was in great shape.
Tuesday - March 15th 2022 4:58PM MST
PS: Not trucks, but gas mileage:

My best --- an early-to-mid '70s Honda 600 (car) --- 50mpg+ on the highway. 30+ city. Why can't they do this now?

One time, an a long straight stretch of highway, I tried 'drafting' (?) --- pull up right behind a semi, and shut the engine off. Infinite gas mileage! But, a little scary.

My worst --- a late '60s Olds 98 Hearse --- 5mpg if you were lucky.

But I could park it in a crappy neighborhood, and not worry about anyone breaking in.
Tuesday - March 15th 2022 4:43PM MST
PS Mme B occasionally bangs on about people who drive pick-ups who don’t really need them for hauling. I’ve only ever owned one pick-up, a ’66 Chevy that I bought in 1974, when a partner and I were trying to start up a house-painting business in San Francisco. A bench seat, a six-cylinder engine. Not a behemoth. Probably the same chassis as an Impala*. The venture ended when my partner bailed on me, and I sold the truck. I do remember those small Toyota and Datsun pick-ups in the 1970s. I thought that they really filled a niche in the market. If I ever need a pick-up, I can rent one by the hour from Home Depot or Menards.

* The more truck literate can correct me if I’m wrong.
Dieter Kief
Tuesday - March 15th 2022 3:35PM MST
These high risin' Fords etc. are things you buy as long as you can afford 'em.
(As soon as people can't afford 'em, it will be much cheaper to - buy one for those with enough humor to then still do it.)
Ehh. - - But you can't always want | What you'd get || If you don't try some time| You can't find | You don't need | What let's ya bleed - ohhh noooo! - -

Adam Smith
Tuesday - March 15th 2022 2:25PM MST
PS: Greetings, Mr. Moderator,

Average Annual Miles per Driver by Age Group...

The United States Department of Transportation Federal Highway Administration said that the average person drove 14,263 miles per year in 2019. That’s roughly 1,200 miles per month per driver or about 39 miles per day. By comparison, the DOT said the average annual miles was 13,476 in 2018.

I'm really lucky. It's 4.8 miles each way to work and both our cars averages 22mpg around town (30hwy). Mrs. Smith and I average 7000 miles each year.

The closest I ever came to buying a new car was when I bought my 1986 camaro...

I bought it with 11,000 km on the odometer. (She was originally a Canadian, eh.) She was a fair weather vehicle that lived most of her life in a retired gentleman's garage, until he passed and his wife traded it in when she bought a new Cadillac. I bought it in 1996 for $7000. (it's the only car I've ever had a note on.)(she got 25mpg on the highway thanks to tuned port injection.)

The Alarmist
Tuesday - March 15th 2022 2:15PM MST

In the coming credit crash, these things will be a dime a dozen ... that’ll be roughly $1m a piece in deflated-inflated currency. About four ounces of gold, which might sound like a bargain until you take the future cost to fill them in a world without petrodollars.
WHAT SAY YOU? : (PLEASE NOTE: You must type capital PS as the 1st TWO characters in your comment body - for spam avoidance - or the comment will be lost!)