Sometimes 'vintage' is synonymous with 'antique.' Vintage vehicles can sometimes be falling apart and need to be rebuilt from scratch, and they're purely just for show at that point. Vintage vehicles from 40-50 years ago are just in museums for displays, or they're in a collector's garage, barely seeing the open road for fear they'll be damaged or destroyed if driven. However, if vehicles are kept up, then they can still share the streets.
Surprisingly, a lot of collectors have functional vintage cars, as well as vintage pickup trucks. There are even several types of trucks that are known for being reliable, stable, and consistent to this day, from the Ford F-Series and Dodge Shelby Dakota to the Dodge Power Wagon and the Chevy Blazer. Those are just some of the names of iconic truck brands that have withstood the test of time to still be solid transportation in 2020.
13. Ford F-Series
The Ford F-Series has been a best-selling truck in the United States for the last 40 years, selling approximately 40 million F-Series, including the Ford F-350 and F-150. Drivers even are known to keep their Ford F-150 for a decade, if not more. According to Consumer Reports, a Ford F-Series truck is incredibly reliable, reaching beyond 200,000 miles.
12. Toyota HiLux
Back in 1968, the Toyota HiLux hit the car market and the open road. While it was later succeeded by the Tacoma in North America, the rest of the globe still sells the HiLux. Sales are estimated at 18 million, largely in part to the vehicle's reputation for reliability, durability, and versatility.
11. Nissan Hardbody 4x4
The Nissan Hardbody 4x4 is 'officially' called the D21 pickup, and it runs on either a four-cylinder or V6 engine. Launching in 1986, the Hardbody was evidence that a truck could be sporty, showing fender flares, 31-inch tires, and light bars. Unfortunately, the Hardbody faded out globally around the mid-2000s.
10. Dodge Shelby Dakota
Chrysler decided to enter the high-performance pickup market in 1989, debuting the Dodge Shelby Dakota. Carroll Shelby replaced a 3.9-liter V6 with a 5.2-liter V8 that had 175 horsepower to help bring the concept to life. This paid off, making the vehicle not only incredibly fast, but also heavily prized, with one selling for nearly $40,000.
9. Volkswagen Caddy
The Volkswagen Caddy arrived in 1978 at Westmoreland Assembly Plant in Pennsylvania. It was even originally known as the 'Rabbit pickup,' with small 1.5- to 1.8-liter diesel or gas engines that only reached 50 horsepower. However, they modified the vehicle later on for it to become the Caddy it's known as today.
8. Jeep Gladiator And J-Series Trucks
The Jeep Gladiator and J-Series Trucks were a massive success from 1963 through 1987, bringing Jeep pickups from a World War II design into the modern age. These trucks had a body that was redesigned to include a version with a stepside bed. The Gladiator has continued to modify its design for modern times, even debuting a new model for 2020.
7. Datsun 620
Ever heard of the Datsun 620? They began life in America in 1959, and this was the model that introduced America to small trucks. By 1972, its fourth-generation 620 was deemed stylish and it the first long bed of any compact truck. The Datsun ended in 1979, but it paved the way for even greater trucks to come.
6. Dodge Power Wagon
Predecessors to the Dodge Power Wagon came home in 1945 during World War II. Those vehicles were the first civilian vehicles with four-wheel drive, sporting an eight-foot cargo bed, as well as 3,000-pounds of payload capacity. Its flathead inline six-cylinder engine made the Dodge Power Wagon, known as a workhorse, even used as an ambulance in the armed forces.
5. Jeep CJ-8 Scrambler
The Jeep CJ-8 Scrambler was widely known from 1981-1985. It had a limited production of fewer than 30,000, but the Jeep CJ-8 Scrambler stretched the wheelbase of the Wrangler-style CJ-7, allowing for a longer pickup body and wooden rails on the beds. An even more impressive feat is that these vintage vehicles cost the same as a modern-day Wrangler.
4. Chevy Blazer
While a Chevy Blazer has the appearance of a modified pickup truck, it was also an early predecessor to the modern 4x4 SUV. Its origins are tied with the Chalet. Made by a company called Chinook, the Chalet had a pop-up camper body that slid into the Blazer's cargo area. That said, fewer than 2,000 Chalets were produced between 1976 and 1977, but they still helped propel the Blazer to fame.
3. Kaiser Jeep M715
The Kaiser M715 showed the world the muscle of a Jeep pickup from 1967 to 1969. Its power came from brawnier axles, lower gears, and a sturdier transmission, delivering 1.25 tons of payload capacity.
The Kaiser M715 was even known for its use in Vietnam and along the Korean Demilitarized Zone. However, it was later demilitarized and made available for civilian use.
2. Volkswagen Type 2 Pickup
The Volkswagen Type 2 Pickup, also known as the Volkswagen bus, has a bit of a 'hippie' reputation. It was sold between 1950 and 1979, and could function as a camper, work van, and ambulance, with either a flatbed or single-cab pickup.
Unfortunately, importing a Volkswagen Bus into America became difficult when a trade war between European countries and the U.S. Resulted in a 25% tariff on light trucks.
1. Jeep FC-150
The Jeep FC-150 turned a standard Jeep into a pickup truck by putting the cab over the engine and making a longer chassis unnecessary. It soon became as maneuverable as the Jeep CJ-5, with the same four-wheel-drive capability. Unfortunately, it was also limited at high speeds, thanks to the vehicle's center of gravity and positioning of the cab, maxing out at 70 horsepower and 65 miles per hour.
Sources: blog.cheapism.com, uncrate.com, retromobe.com, bobbittville.com, hemmings.com