Through the years we've owned many different vehicles, mostly pickups and all new off the showroom floor. These aren't show vehicles but rather used for daily, hard duty. Because they are used primarily for running errands and some heavy towing I prefer a smaller truck but with a V-8 to have enough power for pulling a trailer. The last three trucks have been Dodge Dakotas. One was sold at five years old and still runs faithfully for the current owner. One was destroyed in a crash (the truck was parked at the time and I wasn't there) with lots of life still in it. The current truck is now almost eight years old, long paid for and long out of warrantee. We've been debating whether to keep it and run it another four or five years or upgrade it for something newer. If we keep it, the possible plan is to buy a small ecomomical company car and keep the truck parked as much as possible to both save fuel and to extend the truck's life.
In the last months the pendulum tipped towards ditching the old truck as it developed an exhaust leak and wouldn't start without a jump far too often. When it recently failed AirCare (manditory on older vehicles) a trip to the repair facility was no longer an option. Without that silly little sticker on the windshield the truck was not even marketable. The exhaust leak was fixed, the key interlock replaced, a new battery installed and a bunch of other small repairs taken care of. The repair bill was a bit of a choker but manageable. Once again the truck has won a reprieve as it does its job faithfully each day. The continuing gamble is that the inevitable ongoing repairs will be less than the payments on a new vehicle. With our work in the next year plus being very local having a new vehicle is much less pressing.
It looks like the old Dodge will be run for a while yet.