Torn on whether to sell my Ford Ranger or not

I’m a biker. I ride my motorcycle everywhere, in any weather, except when it’d be dangerous. I bought the ford ranger to tow my bike around if I needed it (put it in the bed), but it’s a two seater vehicle. I’m getting married in a few weeks to girl that has a four seater car.

Well, my ranger is in good shape, has 4WD and a few other comfort features, but it’s a two seater. Marriage, one or two years down the road, means family and pets for us. Pets will come quick (next year).

My problem is that I owe more than the ranger is worth. About 2 - 3 thousand more (thanks to gas prices rising sharply after I bought it and its value going down). For a car that I will ONLY drive in poor weather, I’d ideally want a full-size, 4WD SUV (pet in the rear of vehicle, and can fit kids). But I don’t want to spend a lot of $$$ on trading in a car I’m upsidedown on to begin with, and also that I’ll only be using a very few times out of the year (all in all a few weeks max, cause if it’s not icing up, I’m not using the car). I’m in the military and could be stationed anywhere, so I definitely want 4WD in case I get stationed in someplace where the snow falls heavily.

What to do, what to do…

I hope I get some good options. Thank you for reading and helping me.

I’d do nothing at the moment. The Ranger can still seat your soon to be wife and can serve as a second car. I assume she’ll keep her current car. When you go places together with pet and/or kid you can use her car. Don’t do anything until the Ranger is paid off.

That you’re upside down doesn’t really matter-- the car loan is a sunk cost.

What I would do is sell the truck before you get any more upside down and, if possible, just bum poor-weather rides with the wife until you pay off the note on the Ranger and can afford to pay cash (or at least borrow much less) for a new car. If the ride mooching is not possible, find a cheap 10 or so year old SUV. Thanks to those darn gas prices, you can buy a perfectly servicable 4x4 for $2000 or so.

Alternatively, if the payments aren’t killing you and you really think you need a newer vehicle, you could post an ad on craigslist (or similar) for a straight-across trade. I’m sure there’s someone out there with a nicer newer 4x4 SUV who would love to trade for the utility and better gas mileage of your little truck.

I have thought about doing a trade. I don’t mind doing a trade for a SUV of comparable value (I know not exact) also in good shape. But, what happens with the titles in that sort of scenario? Or if I sell it privately, but for maybe 1000 bucks less than what I owe (so I still owe money)?

Focus on getting married and don’t worry about the Ranger.

You don’t need to do anything until at least next year, and maybe not even then.

Making a move now, based on what you think might happen in the future is not wise. Wait and see what happens in a year or two, then decide what to do. Things might go completely differently that what you envision right now.

Keep the Ranger and try to pay off as much of the loan as you can, as quickly as you can. You can take the pets, or even a child, in the car if you need to go somewhere. Keep the truck for hauling the bike or driving in snow, or drive it once in a while when it’s just the two of you.

I’d keep the ranger. I had a regular cab small pickup. most of my trips ended up with a car seat and you will have the other car for family outings. One of the trucks was a 2wd ranger 2003 that got 24/29 mpg, It really was not a problem for us and 1 child.

I too vote to do nothing until your needs change. Don’t try to anticipate this far ahead. It’s highly possible that the truck will serve your needs fine for the next few years. Throw a good size cap on it and a sliding rear window and the dogs will love riding in the back. And regarding the 4WD, you may get stationed in southern California! Or Florida!

Whatever you decide, thanks sincerely for your service to our country. Sincere best.

I haven’t read every response but has the inital reason to have the Ranger evaporated? (to move the bike when required). If the Ranger still meets your needs don’t construct reasons to move out of it and lose money.

THanks for all the responses. I’ll go ahead and keep it for now and just basically keep it as long as I can until the NEED for a new car pops up. Thanks for the advice about the cap, I haven’t considered that.


You don’t need more seats until you have kids. My Mom had great advice on that front: Wait for 2 years. If you can still stand each other, start thinking about kids. Now that I’m about the same age as she was when offering the advice, I can see the wisdom. Good luck with your marriage and save up for a house to raise those kids in.