Tag Archives: trucks

1986 Toyota 4Runner SR5 Review

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In the eighties, Toyota wanted to replicate the success of its Land Cruiser SUV but in a smaller and more affordable package. Cue the 4Runner which debuted in mid-1984 as a 1985 model. Instead of developing an entirely new model like the Land Cruiser, Toyota used the Hilux chassis to create the 4Runner (sold as the Hilux Surf in other countries).  The first generation was nothing more than a pickup truck with a roof over the bed. The purpose of the 4Runner was to provide the versatility and the go anywhere ability of the Hilux truck while giving the comfort and utility expected of an SUV. I reviewed a third generation, a 1997 4Runner which was the first generation to be built as a separate model, not sharing any body parts or frames with the Hilux. I liked it very much, but I never really thought of reviewing the original 4Runner at all. I asked my friend if I could review his old Volvo 242 or something like that. It was a really cool old Volvo in burgundy and with a manual transmission. However, when I contacted him, he sold it and got this 4Runner. How could I say no to reviewing the original 4Runner with only two doors and a manual transmission?

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2002 Toyota Tacoma SR5 PreRunner V6 Review

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Even though the first Tacoma debuted in 1995, its heritage goes back to the 1964-1967 Stout. Due to its distasteful looks and its spartan equipment levels, not to mention it was significantly slower than competing American trucks, the Stout barely sold in the three years it was produced. The Hilux replaced the Stout in 1969, but due to its reliability, better performance and quality, sales started to grow. The Hilux soldiered on for three generations until in 1976, Toyota changed the name from Hilux to Truck (or Pickup). As Toyota continued to grow in fame and sales, the Truck became regarded as a competitive product that always received praise from the car magazines and consumers. The Toyota Truck lasted till 1995 before being replaced by the Tacoma. While the Truck sold well, it never really catered to the American tastes, and Toyota felt that the Tacoma would change that. This time, instead of being built in Japan, the Toyota built the Tacoma in America, and the name Tacoma was chosen as it was thought to appeal to the American market.  Toyota prioritized refinement and performance, while staying true to its promise of dependability. In the late 1990s when consumers were buying more SUVs and trucks than ever, Toyota’s timing couldn’t have been better. In 2001, the Tacoma received a facelift, and more variants were added. Even in its last year, this generation of the Tacoma still sold well before being redesigned in 2005.

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1999 Ford F-150 SVT Lightning Review

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As a response to Dodge/Jeep/Chrysler’s SRT and Chevrolet’s SS performance divisions, Ford had SVT (Special Vehicle Team). Created in 1991, the SVT division sought to add high performance vehicles to Ford’s lineup. Every SVT model was influenced by these four qualities: Performance, Substance, Exclusivity, and Value. The first cars to come out of SVT were the 1993 Ford Mustang SVT Cobra and the 1993 Ford F-150 SVT Lightning. The first Lightning was available in only three colors, red, black, and white (white was added in 1994). The Lightning shared the same 5.4 liter V8 with other F-150s, but modifications were made for better response and more horsepower, and it also received improvements to its handling. 1995 was the last year for this F150. In 1999, another SVT Lightning version of the latest F-150 was created, and this time, it would be more than a F-150 with subtle performance and visual modifications. The SVT Lightning employed a supercharger for a horsepower rating of 360 (raised to 380 in 2001), and the exterior was completely altered as was the handling. With a 360 horsepower V8, it received the title as the world’s fastest production pickup truck. When Ford redesigned the F-150 in 2004, it discontinued the SVT Lightning edition. Continue reading

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2005 Jeep Wrangler X Review

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“I caught her topless”

The Jeep Wrangler originated from the military vehicle, Willys Jeeps. Willys made a civilian version of the Jeep dubbed the CJ. In 1986, Chrysler (owner of Jeep) replaced the slow-selling CJ with the first mass market Wrangler. This Wrangler became successful and a symbol of American pride. The Wrangler was seen as a car which you just simply enjoy life in. No wonder the Wrangler has appeal as a midlife crisis car for some people. It was unique due to its off road ability, retro looks, and overall cool factor. The fact that you could take the doors and top off didn’t hurt either. The Wrangler was redesigned in 1997, and that is when the Wrangler really took off. Building on the older Wrangler’s traits, it was more comfortable, faster, and bigger, but still retained its off road prowess.

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2002 Chevrolet Silverado LS 2500 HD Review

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Disclaimer: This vehicle is not stock. Upgrades include 33 inch Cooper All Terrain tires, Spectra Cold Air Intake, Flow Master Series 50 muffler, and a 2 inch leveling kit.

As a vehicle that symbolizes America as a whole, the Chevrolet Silverado is the brand’s arguably most important vehicle. Even though the Silverado is a stand-alone model now, that wasn’t always the case. Chevrolet’s fullsize truck was actually called the C/K Series from 1975-1999. Silverado was a top level trim of the C/K series. In 1999, the C/K Series became no more, and the Silverado became a separate model. It is available in regular and heavy duty versions like this 2500 in this review. The first generation Silverado was a hit, due to its affordability and durability. The numerous configurations available was handy as these trucks became synonymous with the construction and commercial market, while also appealing to the consumer market. Continue reading

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2010 Ford F150 FX2 Sport Review

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What is the epitome of America? It’s a truck of course. America’s best selling car, the Ford F150, supports that claim. The F150’s lineage goes back to the late 1940s with the first generation F-Series pick up truck. It was not until the 1980s’ that the F150 rose to prominence, and was recognized as a separate model of the F-Series. Over the years, the F150 made the gradual change from its roots in commercial trucks to being a symbol of status and power. Nowadays, the perception of trucks changed from being delegated to the construction masses, to being a vehicle of American pride. With the latest F150, Ford made the risky move with a smoother and angled design and turbocharged V6s engines as opposed to the earlier F150s with their chiseled designs and old-school engines. Luckily for Ford, it paid off as the F150 remains the best selling vehicle in the United States of America. Continue reading

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2003 Ford Ranger Edge V6 Review

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This car belongs to one of my good friends. He needed a car, and I searched for a car in his budget that he would like. Then he got this. I automatically decided not to like it, because it was an automatic. Why I fixate on stick shifts, I do not know. Anyways, my friend and I, we tend to disagree on everything relating to cars. He likes Mercedes the best, I like BMW the best, He loves trucks, I don’t “love’ trucks, etc. So it’s inevitable I should not like his Ranger, right? Wrong. No matter how hard I try to dislike it, I can’t ignore the Ranger’s charms. Flaws first. The AC didn’t work properly in the summer. The steering has no feel in it. Whenever you turn the wheel sharply, the body leans like you’re going to flip it over.  The ride is harsh. It’s noisy. The crank windows are irritating. But despite all these flaws, I like this truck. Continue reading

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