Two Top Ten Truck Stories at Once

Chevy Cameo Carrier
The pin-up girl-crazy guys at recently put together two different stories that we think you'd like (we sure enjoyed them). 

The first is the Top Ten Special Edition Pickups of All Time, starting in the mid-50s and covering Ford, GM, and Dodge special equipment models that will inspire the heart and soul of any true truck enthusiast. 

The second is the Top Ten Hot Rod Pickup Trucks of All Time, which include vehicles like the last generation Ford Lightning, the Ram SRT-10, and GMC Syclone. 

Both stories are worth a look for the images alone and include some pretty good brochure and live-action photography. If ever there was cool eye-candy on the internet, this is it. We sure wish some of the decision makers at GM, Ford, and Ram would take a closer look. 

Toyota Tacoma X-Runner RTR


they use to make some cool trucks in the day

In Oxi view only the Japanese autos are cool - maybe Oxi is married to Japanese so he must advocate for her.

It's great to see old trucks but they were stinky, difficult to drive, unsafe, less reliable, less capable, and had poor fuel economy.

@ Ken,

How are old trucks stinky ?

Obviously you followed one that the carb was too rich/shot,just like a newer truck if the injector is messed up,you get a fuel smell.

If a old vehicle is in proper working order you get no oil burning,no fuel smell,the tail pipe smells just like a new vehicle if in proper working order.

They were not hard to drive unless you had no power steering or power brakes and actually were very reliable..

You probably are mistaken like many people because they only had a 5 digit odometer,meaning after 99,999 they rolled over to 0,so if you bought a truck with 60,000 on it you dont know if its is 60,000 or 160,000 or 260,000 or more ect...that is where the less reliable part comes in to uneducated auto fans,old American vehicles odometer only goes up to 99,999 then back to 0 !

I have a 1977 Dodge 200 Power Wagon with a 400 4bbl and it gets 16 mpg just like many new trucks.

Top ten hot rod list was spot on! One question though, was the X-Runner a concept or production?

My grandmother has a '55 Chevy like the one pictured is white and red...wrap around back glass...235 straight 6.... it is sitting under the barn going to waste.....wish i had the money to fix it up but Obama's economy has been rough...

Having driven an X-Runner at speed on Road America, it is one sweet ride for a pickup!!!

I turned so many heads autocrossing it likewise with Milwaukee Region SCCA, they just could not believe a pickup could put down such solid numbers...

At Road America once with NASA, the chief safety steward of NASA Midwest was amazed of my X-Runner running those speeds on a traditional road course, he would black flag me for the hell of it (training)...

I am currently trying to design a similar rear x-brace that the X-Runner has for my 4x4 to to increase strength in the rear sub-frame for higher payloads and off-road strength...

That also reminds me of a Mustange guy that was autocrossing in street tire class and why I was beating him on ondex time, he was shocked to see that I had the original leaf springs in the rear...

Wow oxi, cool story! NASA!!?? Truly you are a god among men.

It's not a story, it's reality...

NASA is NOT the space agency, it is the National Auto Sport Association...

My member number was #133340


I'm talking 50's era and earlier. It's easy to romance a good looking old pickup but they were clunky, squeaky, leaky, bouncy, overall very unrefined. My dad had a couple. Issues with overheating, ignition, burning oil, engine rebuilds, worn out belts, carb overhauls, engine fuel flooding, dead batteries, flat tires. We've come along way since then.

Even today you can sit in nicely preserved old pickups at well known auto auctions and detect a blended smell of engine oil and fuel in the cab and that's when the engine is off. And it's amazing how strong exhaust fumes are even when they aren't spewing out exhaust smoke.

I love to look at them and bring back fond memories of a simpler time but that's about it.

Nice list!

my ole 72 chev 4x4 shortbox gets 18.5 mpg and i will take clear across the country anytime as it has never left me down , the new trucks would easily get better fuel economy if the epa would go away and quit restricting the motors

@Mechanic: Have to agree with you on most of that. Heck I have a 83 W150 sitting outback. Tough old trucks. But you can get more torque out of a current Ram 2500 Hemi, better mileage, and your chance of surviving an accident is greatlly increased. You can also run a modern truck down the road at 70 mph, and not hear a bunch of wind noise, or if you go from the low altitude to up in the mountains, and not be running real rich. I just took mine on a 4600 or so round trip out to the northwest. All the power I needed, and comfort too. Arkansas to Olympia Washington would be a long, uncomfirtable ride in my 83. I have drivin that one on a few trips, Colorado to Arkansas and Colorado to Salt Lake City with a race car behind it.

*meant to say Colorado Springs*

My favorite truck hands down is the 1967-1972 Chevrolet. Sophisticated, stylish, round wheel arches and just a clean and mean design. Next up would be the Task Force because it just looked tough and about ready to kill you if you were to cross it.. I wish Chevy would do a Task Force again for their HD line to take on the SD. Make it look mean like that and keep the 1500's like the 67-72's. Third would be the 88-98 Chevy trucks. Such a clean yet bold and tough design. I think it's the most timeless design next to the 67-72's. Fourth would be the 73-87 Chevy trucks. Just rugged as could be.

Fifth place would go to the 2004-2008 F-150. Much like the 2 Chevrolet's beginning in 67 and 88, It was a breath of fresh air. Very bold and very clean with superior sophistication qualities about it. Sixth would be the 92-96 F-Series. A knockout of a truck that brought Ford up to where Chevrolet was at the time. Seventh would be the Super Duty of any year. Just a true rugged workhorse and bold as could be. Last would be the Dodge Ram from 94-2000 or whenever it ended. A Solid Axle 1500 was just unreal for truck guys at the time and the new bold styling was unlike anything out there before. I have no other favorites outside of those 8.

@Oxi: always doing something to increase payload (yes it will hold more, just not legally) Hows about stopping better? Or are all the places you go and play just a few miles from the house? I am thinking that thing cant be very safe at 65-70 on the highway. Or cooling, that's alot of weight for that little engine. Same old stock clutch? ANYWAY, back on topic. They can do alot with a purpose built truck, X-Runner it just gets a low to no payload rating. Which makes it about like a truck body on a car, like Nascar trucks (which I like watching, but they can't truck much, just haul ass!) I can imagine it being pretty fast on a road course, but I think autocrossing a little 90's model Neon R/T normally aspirated would beat it. But I can relate to running something the sports car crowd might not expect, and surprising them. I took a figure eight racecar out there once, had I had a slightly differant gear ratio as opposed to the one for 3/8 mile figure eight tracks, and had a four barrel and aluminum intake as opposed to a rules required stock cast iron intake and holley 4 barrel, that thing woulda gone faster.

Yikes! who picked the colour schemes back in the 70s and 80s?... I still love the look of the 454 ss Chevys, although my preference has never gone to big blocks. I had a 1990 Chevy 2wd Silverado (as in trim for that era) half ton that was probably the best used vehicle I had ever bought. I picked it up 3 years ago and had planned on a GM Performance Parts 383 Crate motor with vortec heads and retain the old throttle body, but alas, I ended up selling the truck, which, today I wish I hadnt. I was gonna do a nice blacked out paint job with a red bowtie and blck 18" rims....I think I had delusions about my income at the time lol. Oh well, still might someday....


You can bet your bottom dollar the X-Runner is real...


"I am currently trying to design a similar rear x-brace that the X-Runner has for my 4x4 to to increase strength in the rear sub-frame for higher payloads and off-road strength..."


Do you have any more info on the brace? If it is successful, maybe you can sell it to Toyota...

*OOPS, should said HOLLEY 2 Barrel above!*

@TRX4 Tom,

I will give you some insight on how to make a 1/2 ton pickup into a 1 ton:

Toyota did this back in the 1980's for example my 1985 Toyota little 2wd pickup had a 1 ton version of the same model, same engine, brakes, frame, axles... only change was the leaf springs and shocks to carry 1 ton...

Here is one version from a 1986:

In fact I did the same thing to make my current Tacoma a 1 ton capable by altering the suspension with 200lbs. coils up front and 700lbs. leafs in the rear with improved shocks over stock...

Funny little 2wd Toyota's from the 1980's were made into dually's with a camper shell pulling trailers with the same frame, engine, etc...

Note: as soon as you simply place a larger tire size like from a 245 to a 265, that data plate NO LONGER APPLIES! You have altered the load ratings, fuel efficiency, braking, etc...

Same applies when placing aftermarket bumpers even a simple bed cap!

@TRX4 Tom,

You mention brakes and cooling?

Another great reason I love the 4-cylinder Toyota's over the V6's for off-road duty is because I take advantage of all of the V6 applications for my 4-cylinder...

That includes:

Same brakes, axles, frame, wheel bearings, suspension and cooling package i.e. radiator size as the bigger V6...

The top of the line V6 Tacoma with its corresponding heavier weight rides on the very same chassis as the 4-cylinder and has the same braking package, cooling package, suspension basics and guts as the 4-cylinder...

So I have room to improve the 4-cylinder...

@Oxi, Jay, and Team Oxi - Instead of fabbing your own "X-Brace", why don't you go to your local Toyota dealer and just order one?

I would agree that the old trucks were not as safe and did not have all the safety features todays trucks have but to say they are unreliable is totally false. If you kept the maintenance up on them-tuneups, oil changes, and grease all the suspension fittings they would run forever. Yes a lot of them were not as easy to steer but once they were moving you did not really need power steering. I prefer todays technology and yes they have longer maintenance intervals but you did not have to mortgage your grandchild and their children to buy one. My granddad would get a new pickup every 4 or 5 years and pay cash for one in the 50s and 60s. I had his old 63 IH for many years and it was very reliable. Drove it from Kentucky to Texas several times with no problems. Sure I was going 60 miles per hour and not 80 but that truck was built like a tank and was easy to work on. There was something to be said for a truck being a truck and not a rolling limo as they are today. If you owned a truck years ago it was not to impress anyone it was a tough utilitarian vehicle. Truck owners back then did not trash each others trucks like they do today on this site. If you were a truck owner back then you had respect for your fellow truck owner, but that is the difference between the past and today's world where it is perfectly acceptable to trash ones truck, politics, religion, and beliefs because that is given as acceptable by the talking heads in the media and in politics. It would be nice to see a little more civility. That is what I miss about my granddad I never heard him say an ugly thing about anyone even when I knew he did not like someone. How about a little more civility from some of you Ford, Chevy, and Toyota guys?

When it comes to the list of top 10 special edition trucks, the only ones I liked on the list are the Chevrolet Cameo Carrier, Dodge Warlock, and PowerWagon. I'd probably rate them in that order.

I looked at the Top 10 hotrod pickups and I liked all of the with the exception of the Toyota Tacoma X-Runner RTR Concept. I like the truck but as a "one off" concept, it doesn't count. Any guy could modify a stock truck and then claim a position on the list.

On the topic of old trucks being more unreliable etc. Technology evolves. I can't see how one could compare them. It also depends on what you consider old. I've seen beat to death 3 year old pickups that ran worse than a 30 year old well cared for truck. Many people have gotten spoiled by technology. It used to be an art trying to start a truck/car with manual choke carburetor, with simple mechanical point contact ignitions. You got it wrong and you weren't going anywhere. My dad had scar on his chin from a hand crank model T Ford. The engine turned over, the handle did not self release and spun and knocked him cold. You have to remember that the Model T was considered modern, and state of the art when it came out. Trucks as in commercial trucks had monsterously huge flat steering wheels. Why? No power steering. It was the only way you could muscle the truck to turn.
I bet that in 30 years time, people will look at our current trucks and think the same thing. Like Einstein said - it's all relative.

I do believe on the top ten list they should have listed the supercharged tundra 2wd reg cab short bed. it is a factory produced, factory warranted option for the tundra and on those models produced SRT-10 killing quarter mile times at 12.7-12.9 with no other mods.............. that would even be more acceptable than the Tacoma RTR X-runner which is the same powertrain anyways (that truck is a MONSTER!!!!!! 0-60 in like 3.6 and quarters in i think it was 11.8)

I like every one of the Special Edition trucks with the exception of the Ranger Splash.

The Dodge Dude is something. I never seen that truck before and the Super Bee trim would be pretty collectable.

I never knew what Big 10 meant but I used to see them all over the place around Edmonton when I was growing up. Mind you, I never paid attention to what it meant and just thought it was cool that a small truck could have a big block.

I have a friend who has an F250 regular cab 4x4 in black with the orange-ish multi colour trim and it's a beauty. I'm not sure what engine it has (I think it's a 460) but it's a manual and runs like a top. It doesn't get many miles but he has a camper permantly attached to it and goes on the odd trip with it in the summer. It sits in his shop for the most part but it's an awesome example of a classic.

There are 2 cars in the "hot rod pickup trucks" article... why???


They start out as cars, but they have truck they're like trucks.

The comments to this entry are closed.