I made the mistake of going to the dealership to see if they actually had a Tacoma Standard cab Standard transmission 4x4. Miracles do happen, there was one and only one (as opposed to none, which is usually the case). I sat out there looking at it for so long, a sales guy talked to me. The rest is history. Here are a few photos:
Toyota either makes fully-loaded things with all the fixins, or they make the base model with hardly anything. I didn't want to pay 2,500 for a foot of extra space in the cab, and about 5,000 more for things like TRD and chrome and stuff, so it's pretty basic. But I like it, after all, it's a truck! If I want luxury, I'd want to have luxury in a car! It is neat that it has a couple upgrades that make it a decent machine: A/C, tachometer, enlarged wheels and tires (so it's higher), more hefty starter and battery (for winter), and floor mats. Now I can look forward to when it snows! It'll be fun having a 4x4 in the winter.
It's so fun to have such a perfectly clean (inside and out) brand- spankin' new truck. It definitely raises the feel-good-about-yourself factor. It's fun to look under it and see how spotless it is underneath. The Ford was showing signs of age and was about to need some serious maintenance. I might as well just get something that's not going to need maintenance for, like, the first 200,000 miles. At least, so they say about Toyotas. We shall see. It's definitely higher quality than the Ford, but I can already tell it's not up to Honda quality. I wish Honda made trucks.
Considering this truck makes up only 5% of my entire debt load, and the interest on the loan for this truck is next to absolutely nothing, and the fame toyotas have for longevity, this seems like a pretty cool investment -- and it looks dang good, too. This is the last of the really-compact Tacomas, I hear. The 2005s will be bigger. It'll be neat to have a model of truck that all of the quirks have been worked out of over the last decade and is a classic for its size. That out-weighs the end-of-life model right there.