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Good deal for a 1985 Isuzu Pickup?

The competition wasn’t too tough on diesel pickup horsepower in the 80s @asemaster. A customer had a diesel Toyota Hilux and he said it couldn’t reach 70 mph on level road and needed a long downhill on the few occasions it did pass the 70 mark. But he bragged of near 50 mpg. There was of course the great advantage of knowing no one wanted to borrow it.

Wow! Thanks a lot for the replies guys! I really learned a lot. I knew car talk radio was good, but the community is great, too!

This is my first time buying a car from a private dealer. Thanks bcohen2010 for the guide to spotting a “car flipper”. Also it’s good to know that a really old non-collectible car is less than half of this car.

Now I’m checking out a Jetta Pikcup UTE. The price went down from $8500 to $8000 over the weekend. VW is suppose to be reliable, right? Is that a fair deal?

Also I’m looking into making biodiesel. Does anyone got any pointers on that?

I had never seen old isuzu commercial before. This was was pretty funny

This is a conversion, I’d never buy somebody else’s project car. And older VWs aren’t know for their reliability.

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VW reliability - some are - some are not. Good deal on a one off modified vehicle , who knows ? I guess the correct price would be the amount you want to pay and the amount the seller will accept and if they match then that is the price and value.

Pointers for making Biodiesel - That is easy. Google is your friend , there are so many articles and videos that you may not live long enough to see them all.

Why do I have a feeling, that this went from very bad to even worse?
Fiber glass rear body and no reinforcements to the rear body (at least visible, see pic 2). What could possibly go wrong if that thing got rear ended.
I wouldn’t even donate it to a person I don’t like.


The minitruck market is insane right now. The offers I’ve had to buy my old '88 Mitsubishi pickup are eye-popping. And I won’t sell it because I couldn’t get another one and make it reliable for that price.

My wife and I have 6 cars between us. 3 of them are nice. 1 of them is a cool T-bar sports car with custom-stitched leather seats.

The pickup is the only one where we routinely find notes under the wiper blade asking us to call a number to sell it to someone, and you can see the bad bondo job that I did because I suck at bodywork, so they know it’s rusty. And you can see the odometer with more than 200,000 on it from outside the truck, so they know it’s… Experienced.

I’m not saying that these pickups are worth it, but that’s what they’re going for, because if you want a small pickup you have to get an old one. The current “small” GM pickup, the Colorado, is enormous.


While I was somewhat aware of the high prices of older small trucks that you mentioned when I searched Toyota I found these

and was flabbergasted. Why are the manufacturers refusing to market small pickups in this country I wonder.

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It’s all because of the Chicken Tax.

Pretty good explainer here:

$4750 for a 30+ year old NON-classic vehicle, built by a company that left the US consumer vehicle marketplace many years ago?
What should you check?
Perhaps… your concept of value… ?

Why yes, @shadowfax, there is that Chicken tax. But who knows what it is and who has any idea that their choices in new trucks has anything to do with a Chicken tax? It seems your curiosity goes beyond today’s ads. But then who is aware of the significance of a truck’s shadow on the ground under it in automobile marketing and profit?

The 25% tariff didn’t apply to the compact trucks assembled in North America from Nissan, Toyota, GM and Ford, those trucks were discontinued or became larger because of falling sales.

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That was more for SUVs. Foreign makers had already been getting around the tariff with stunts like shipping part of the vehicle over here, then shipping the rest of it over here and having someone in a small assembly building bolt them together. That’s also, btw, the reason the Subaru Brat had those weird rear-facing seats in the bed. Now it’s a passenger car and isn’t subject to the tariff.

Of course, all those shenanigans added cost, which was passed on to the consumer, and one thing that small pickup drivers wanted was a small, inexpensive truck. Telling them they have to pay $400 more for the truck because all sorts of games had to be played to skirt the tax wasn’t a winning recipe.

Hit the nail on the head for me. I’m looking for a small pickup and end up looking mostly at old 90s trucks or these utes. At least this thread is giving me a better idea of how to value the options.

Just because there is a small following that is willing to pay high dollars for the dwindling supply of remaining trucks doesn’t make it lucrative for a large vehicle manufacturer to resume building them.

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I was told by a local business owner that the small trucks he had did not qualify for his tax deductions because the IRS changed the Gross Weight requirement . He had to buy larger trucks just because of that.


How did you find the guy’s user profile through craigslist?