Pickup truck

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2010 Ford F-150 pickup truck with a crew cab and shortened cargo bed

A pickup truck is a light duty truck having an enclosed cab and an open body with low sides and tailgate.[1] Once considered a work tool with few creature comforts, the pickup has evolved into a common alternative for a car.[2] By the 1990s, less than 15 per cent of owners reported use in work as the truck's primary purpose.[3] The Ford F-150 pickup has been the best-selling vehicle in the United States since 1982.[4]


Nomenclature[edit]

The term pickup is of unknown origin. Early trucks were usually called express or express delivery trucks. In 1913 Studebaker used the term in its literature. By the 1930s pick-up (hyphenated) had become the standard term.[5]

In South Africa people of all language groups use the term bakkie, the diminutive of the Afrikaans word for bowl: bak.

In Australia and New Zealand ute, short for utility, is used for both pickups and coupé utilities.

A pickup with four rear wheels instead of two is called a dually.

The terms half-ton and three-quarter-ton are a remnant from a time when the number referred to the maximum cargo capacity by weight.[6]

History[edit]

  • 1917: The Ford Model TT one tone chassis introduced. Like all early trucks it was sold without a bed or cab. Bodies were added by aftermarket builders.[7]
  • 1924: Dodge produces a 3/4-ton pickup with cab and body constructed entirely of wood.[8]
  • 1925: Ford produces a pickup based on the Ford Model T car, the first factory-built, steel-bodied, half-ton truck with a cargo bed, adjustable tailgate, and heavy-duty rear springs.[9] Billed it as the "Ford Model T Runabout with Pickup Body," it sold for US$281. 34,000 were built.
  • 1928: the Model A replaced the Model T. It had the first closed-cab pickup and a safety glass windshield, roll-up side windows and three-speed transmission.
  • 1931: Chevrolet produced its first factory-assembled pickup.[10]
  • 1932: Ford Australia produced the first Australian "ute".[11]
  • 1940s: during the war, the United States government halts the product of privately-owned trucks.[10]
  • 1950s: consumers begin purchasing pickups for lifestyle rather than utilitarian reasons.[10] Chevrolet introduces the smooth-sided fenderless Cameo Carrier and the Dodge Sweptline were introduced with smooth-side beds. In 1957, Ford offered a purpose-built Styleside bed with smooth sides.
  • 1960s: Toyota Stout introduced with a crew cab.[12] and the Hino Briska was introduced in 1962. Dodge followed with its own factory built crew cab in 1963.[13] Ford introduced its crew cab in 1965 and General Motors in 1973.[14] Pickups begin to feature comfort items like power options and air conditioning.[3]
  • 1970s: pickups, as trucks unhindered by the emissions controls regulations on cars, begin to replace muscle cars as the performance vehicle of choice. The Dodge Warlock appears in Dodge's "adult toys" line.[3] Other "toys" from Dodge included the Macho Power Wagon and Street Van.
  • 1980s: the compact Mazda B-series, Isuzu Pup and Mitsubishi Mighty Max appeared. Subsequently, American manufacturers built their own compact trucks for the domestic market: the Ford Ranger, and the Chevrolet S-10. Minivans make inroads into the pickups' market share.[3]
  • 1990s: Pickups' market share is further eroded by the popularity of sport utility vehicles.[3]

Design and features[edit]

Trucks are either compact or full-size, and they come in a wide variety of cab and bed configurations. Four-wheel drive is always an option. A regular cab has a single row of seats and a single set of doors, one on each side. Extended or super cab pickups add an extra space behind the main seat, sometimes including small seats. A crew cab, or double cab, seats five or six and has two full-size front-hinged doors on both sides. Modern trucks can include such features as AWD/four wheel drive, Bluetooth and DVD Players, front and rear cameras, heated/cooled leather seating, sunroofs, 22-inch polished aluminum wheels, and remote-release tailgates.

In the US, most trucks are sold with automatic transmissions, and many are only manufactured as such. Ford offers automatic-only. GM offers only the Chevrolet Colorado and its GMC sibling with a manual transmission. The Cummins diesel engine-equipped Ram is the only full-size truck available with a six-speed gearbox and a clutch. It has an ultra-low first-gear ratio for heavy hauling.[15] Other trucks available in 2015 with a manual are the Nissan Frontier, and Toyota Tacoma.[16]

Cab-over, also known as cab over engine (COE), or cab forward has a vertical front the cab sitting above the front axle. An early cab-forward drop-side pickup was the Volkswagen Transporter, introduced in 1952. This configuration is more common among European and Japanese manufacturers than in North America, since the style allows a longer cargo area for the same overall length. The design was more popular in North America in the 1950s and '60s, examples including the Jeep Forward Control, Ford Econoline, Chevrolet Corvair, Rampside and Loadside pickups, and the Dodge A-100.

The cargo bed can vary in size according to whether the vehicle is optimized for cargo utility or passenger comfort. Most have fixed side walls and a hinged tailgate. This is termed step-style or well body cargo. A drop-side bed has a flat tray with hinged panels rising up on the sides and the rear.

Vehicles similar to the pickup include:

In the American domestic market pickups are general categorized as:

  • Compact: introduced in the United States in the 1960s, compact pickups have a smaller footprint, and may have four cyclinder engines.
  • Full-size, or half ton: In the United States the most biggest selling type is the full-sized, or half-ton. These carry the designation "1500" in the case of the Chevrolet Silverado, GMC Sierra, and Ram, and "150" in Ford's terminology.
  • Heavy duty: Heavier-duty trucks are designated 2500, 3500 (or F-250, F-350) and so on.

Production and use outside North America[edit]

Uses for pickup trucks[edit]

While in America most pickup trucks are used primarily for passenger transport, pickups are also used in law enforcement, the military, fire services, and for Pickup truck racing, a form of auto racing using modified versions of trucks mostly on oval tracks. Race pickup trucks are mechanically similar to coupé-shaped stock cars.

A monster truck is a vehicle styled after pickup trucks, but with extremely large wheels and suspension. They are used for competition and popular sports entertainment and in some cases they are featured alongside motocross races, mud bogging, tractor pulls and car-eating robots.

Equipping pickup trucks with camper shells provides a small living space for camping. Slide-in truck campers, on the other hand, give a pickup truck the amenities of a small motorhome, but still allow the operator the option of removal and independent use of the vehicle.

Pickups are often used by practitioners of rolling coal. This is the modification diesel engine, so that the vehicle can emit an under-aspirated visibly polluting sooty diesel exhaust. Vehicles emissions controls are modified in open defiance of environmental regulations. It also may include the intentional removal of the particulate filter[20] Practitioners often additionally modify their vehicles by installing smoke switches and smoke stacks. Modifications to a vehicle to enable rolling coal may cost from $200 to $5,000.[21][22]

In popular culture[edit]

A 2009 Ford F-150 King Ranch 4x4 SuperCrew used by former president George W. Bush at his Texas ranch was sold for $300,000 for the benefit of the charity Fisher House Foundation.[23]

Pickup trucks have played significant roles in many Hollywood productions, including:

Pickups are a common theme of country music song lyrics, including:

Gallery[edit]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Pickup". Merriam Webster. Retrieved 2014-08-07. 
  2. ^ Porter, Bryan (2011). Handbook of Traffic Psychology. Elsevier. p. 222. 
  3. ^ a b c d e Mueller, Mike. The American Pickup Truck. p. 9. 
  4. ^ "Auto sales reach six-year high of 15.6 million vehicles sold, Ford F-Series takes the lead". NY Daily News. 2014-01-06. 
  5. ^ Zuehlke, Jeffrey. Pickup Trucks. p. 9. 
  6. ^ "Pickup truck buying guide". Consumer Reports. Retrieved 27 May 2015. 
  7. ^ Mueller, Mike. Classic Pickups of the 1950s. 
  8. ^ "1918 to 1928 Dodge Brother Pickups". Retrieved 26 May 2015. 
  9. ^ "The History of Ford Pickups: The Model T Years 1925–1927". PickupTrucks.com. Retrieved 2009-06-04. 
  10. ^ a b c "Trucking Timeline: Vintage and Antique Truck Guide". Retrieved 26 May 2015. 
  11. ^ "The Ute - Australia Innovates". Powerhouse Museum. Retrieved 2009-04-25. 
  12. ^ "Toyota Vehicle Identification Manual", Toyota Motor Corporation, Overseas Parts Department, Catalog No.97913-84, 1984, Japan
  13. ^ "Ram history page on Allpar". Retrieved 2007-06-04. 
  14. ^ "Chevrolet Avalanche press release". Archived from the original on 2007-06-14. Retrieved 2007-06-04. 
  15. ^ "Ram 3500". Retrieved 28 May 2015. 
  16. ^ Inama, John. "Want a Pickup With Manual Transmission? Comprehensive List for 2015". Retrieved 28 May 2015. 
  17. ^ "LiteAce Truck". Toyota Japan. Retrieved 2013-01-12. [dead link]
  18. ^ "Chinese Pickup Truck Sales, Led by Great Wall Wingle, Surged 48% to 378,000 Units in 2010". ChinaAutoWeb.com. Retrieved 2014-08-07. 
  19. ^ "www.proliance.co.th/presentation". Proliance Company Limited. Retrieved 26 February 2012. 
  20. ^ Abel, David (July 28, 2014). "Rules have diesel enthusiasts fuming". The Boston Globe. Retrieved July 30, 2014. 
  21. ^ Dahl, Melissa (July 24, 2014). "Why Pickup Truck Drivers Are Paying $5,000 to Pollute More". Science of Us. Retrieved July 30, 2014. 
  22. ^ Kulze, Elizabeth (June 16, 2014). ""Rollin’ Coal" Is Pollution Porn for Dudes With Pickup Trucks". Vocativ. Retrieved July 30, 2014. 
  23. ^ Richter, Maurice. "Pickup truck used by George W. Bush auctioned for $300,000". Reuters. Retrieved 28 May 2015. 
  24. ^ Ron Warnick (November 12, 2006). "Meet Mater's inspiration". Route 66 News. Retrieved July 29, 2012. 
  25. ^ Auto Editors of Consumer Guide (17 October 2007). "1937 Plymouth PT-50 Half-Ton Pickup". howstuffworks com. Retrieved 13 July 2010.