Ask TFL: Why Did You Buy a Pickup Truck Instead of an SUV? (Poll)

Is it about want, or is it need? Help us settle the argument.

Please help us settle this argument. Roman and Alex-on-Autos recently argued the following: “Why do people buy a pickup truck instead of an SUV?” One side of the argument is most people buys a truck because : “It’s a lifestyle choice. They get a pickup because one day they may need it.” The other side of the argument is: “They buy a pickup truck because they need to haul and tow trailers.” It boils down to “want” versus “need”.

We have a poll near the end of this post where you can tell us your thoughts.

Here is the video where this argument started. It was a discussion between Sofyan from Redline Reviews, Alex on Autos, and Roman from TFLstudios.

Next, we have a letter from Dirk H. on this very same subject that he submitted to

Dirk writes:

Trucks are a weird phycological concept. Everybody buys things they wish they would need. 

  • An off-road package for that one hunting trip each year (they only do all 5 years). Get a ATV or SxS or Wrangler if you want to go off-road.
  • Towing capability they never use. They either tow trailer up to 3500 lbs. I can tow with my Highander or would like to tow their single wide, but this one is to heavy for their truck.
  • It is great when you move. Every time someone actually moves, they borrow my enclosed 5×8 trailer. You can load it and park over night without issues.
  • Everybody talks about cheap work trucks, nobody buys them. Either they buy the “fancy standard Redneck” off-road version as a private person as a family truck or the HD luxury version for business tax reasons. None of this is based on needs.Definition of “ fancy Redneck version”: It is what people think their neighbor thinks expects a truck should be.
  • If capability would be used to match need in a rational buying section the Ridgeline would be the best selling Truck in the US.The couple of people I know who really use their truck would be better off with a van in 95%+ of the cases.
  • Here is my big counter argument against Romas point:
    You guys talking about your viewer demanding work truck videos a lot. And then nobody watches these videos or buys these trucks. I agree with you that nobody really wants a work truck. Everybody is talking about it and nobody is actually buying them. The real categories should be called Family and Lifestyle trucks. It’s a wishful thinking, not capability driven decision. If Roman wants to counter this point:List all use cases where a pickup is better than a SUV with or without a 3500 lbs trailer. How many people have these use cases and how often? How many of these would be best of with a Ridgeline vs a “real” Truck?”

Here are some of the images that Dirk submitted showing his Toyota Highlander and Honda Odyssey that he uses for play and work: camping, carrying tools for work, and towing a small trailer.

Please help us settle the argument by providing your feedback with the poll here, and also in the comments section below.

Why Did You Buy a Pickup Truck?
Want: It’s a lifestyle vehicle that I will one day use to full potential!
Need: It’s the most versatile vehicle that I use all the time!
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