Are Old Trucks Better Than New Trucks?
By February 8, 2018on
The Tacoma’s front bench seats have surprisingly minor wear with not a tear or stain in sight. The 2.7-liter four-cylinder and four-speed automatic have remained in beautiful working order. Fuel economy? About 25 miles per gallon. Not bad, either then or now.
My neighbor wants to keep his truck for forever and a day. He loves it and spends a fair deal of his daily free time driving to restaurants and the movie theater instead of driving by the dealership. It’s a keeper.
These outstanding results from the Long-Term Quality Index encompass over 10,000 Tacomas (10,094 as of February 2018). This little Toyota has not only exceeded the small truck average when it comes to the powertrain. It has set the gold standard of long-term quality for the entire segment which now encompasses 11 unique models, all of which exceed the industry average, and over 34,000 vehicles that have been inspected and appraised by hundreds of ASE certified mechanics over the last five years.
The Toyota Tacoma may be a light-duty truck with limited popularity, but it has remained a quality heavyweight for well over two decades. You name the year, the end result is the same. The Tacoma has remained a small truck standout in a market that hasn’t offered an American competitor since 2011. Guys like my neighbor who don’t want a supersized version of their wants and needs have remained loyal to the brand.
This level of owner loyalty, which is not all that uncommon these days, makes me wonder about today’s marketplace and whether there may be an equivalent to Bob’s Toyota. Is there anything out there, brand new or just recent, which can give owners a similar level of reliability and value?
The surprising answer I find as a long-time auto auctioneer and car dealer here in Georgia is, “Only if you buy it twice as big and for twice as much.”
Even with a healthy inflation adjustment, the average new truck now sells for twice the price of what was once a mid-spec Tacoma. Thanks to the average price of a truck eclipsing $40,600 two years ago, you now will likely need to save for two Tacomas just to buy that one Tacoma.