So, I’m in the market for a ’72-’75 Dodge 4x4 pickup. Why? The reasons go on and on, actually, but I think it comes down to “I’m getting older”. Here are a few other reasons, though:
1. I love that body style; the ’72-’75 Dodge trucks really get me going. The ones released just before that look pretty weird, most of the time. Sure, some of 'em look hot when they are lifted and have big tires, but those “swept side” trucks are all a bit strange to me. I have liked a few of them, and they definitely have personality, but I’m more drawn to the ‘70s truck look. Maybe it’s because I was born in ’75 and my dad drove a ’76 Chevy long bed forever.
2. NO SMOG. I repeat, this cesspool of a state doesn’t require owners to smog vehicles that were built before 1976; that’s what I’m talking about. I’m so tired of computers, sensors, harnesses, smog junk, and the inability to radically modify an engine, I could scream. I’ll take an old V8 any day, because I can slap on a 4bbl, a mild cam, some headers and an electronic ignition whenever I’d like to for more power. Substantially more power. Plus, I save on the stupid smog bill every couple of years. Screw The Man. I don’t wanna Go Green; I want to run 300 horsepower or more in an old, carbureted truck. So there.
3. I can work on the shit. There is nothing sweeter than working on an older vehicle, in my opinion. Everything is simple, it’s right there, and problems are very easy to diagnose. Changing the alternator isn’t a finger-breaking nightmare, and there are *no* sensors to go bad, causing me to have to hook the vehicle up to a code reader in order to figure out what the hell is wrong with it. Not for me. I like a simple engine that makes simple power in a simple engine bay.
4. Pickup trucks rule. Yes, this cesspool of a state charges me for that, but so be it (CA tacks on a “weight fee” to all pickup trucks unless they have a permanent shell). There are things I can do with an old pickup I cannot do with my current Jeep Cherokee. Like towing. Sure, the Jeep can yank things and it got my boat home fine, but it was pushing hard to do so. Even the smallest V8 in a pickup will do much better. I wouldn’t tow a travel trailer or another vehicle with my Jeep – not a chance. I can get more shit inside it, which is good for camping and whatnot. Even adding a shell to an old pickup is superior to the storage space in the Cherokee. There’s way more room in the cab, too; I get tired of squishing into the thing sometimes. I’ve never been one for small vehicles. Plus, I’m a big fan of bench seats; I actually and truly love 'em. About the only thing an old Dodge pickup won’t, for sure, do better than the Jeep is trail. The Jeep is superior in that aspect but as I said, I’m getting older; the trails aren’t near as fun as they used to be. I’d rather just yank a cool old camp trailer somewhere and setup for the weekend. Old people style. *lol*
5. I can lift a ’72 Dodge four inches and fit 37s under it with zero issues. A Jeep Cherokee with a 4.5” lift still has to be trimmed to properly fit 33s. I do realize that because of the size differences of the actual vehicles, the 33s are likely as big on a Jeep as the 37s are on a bigger tuck, proportionally, but still, it’s hard to argue with 37s. 35” tires actually look small on a big truck with a four-inch lift. That’s what I’m talking about. Oh, the lift kits are far cheaper, too, but probably because they aren’t designed exclusively for flex and/or trailing. However, I’ve seen a few of the ‘70s Power Wagons straight-out getting down on the trail with nothing more than a lift and tires. Trucks are versatile like that.
So, anyhow, there are probably more reasons, but you get the idea. I once had an old pickup, too, but it was a Chevy (Yuck!) and it had a gutless 400ci small-block, and it was a 1976 – smog monster. In fact, it was the one my dad had that I mentioned earlier. It could climb anything and go anywhere, though, and it was fun off-road while it lasted. Now, on to bigger and better (Dodge!) things.