My Hot Take Of The Day Is That Big Pickup Trucks Are A Plague And Should Not Be Sold For Daily Driving

Illustration for article titled My Hot Take Of The Day Is That Big Pickup Trucks Are A Plague And Should Not Be Sold For Daily Driving
Photo: Keith Srakocic (AP)

Listen. I didn’t want to have to be the one to say this, but I’m going to be the one to say it. Big pickup trucks should not be allowed on the roads as a casual everyday driving vehicle.

We have a problem in America. A plague, if you will. We have an obsession with big, beastly trucks. They’ve spread through our streets like a poison, taken over our cities by storm, and now that they’re here, we can’t get rid of them.

There’s a good chance you’ve been there. You’ve had a rough day at work, and you’re just trying to find a parking space for your small, city-friendly, fuel-efficient vehicle at the grocery store—and suddenly, across the lot, you find it. An empty space, so close to the front that you might as well just be able to open the car door and step right into the store. You hustle over, praising the gods of the work week for taking pity on your poor soul, only to find—that spot you scoped out? It’s sandwiched between two trucks. They’ve made an attempt at fitting between the yellow lines, but unfortunately, they’re just too large to squeeze your own car through.


Or maybe, there you are, driving through the tight, downtown city streets. It’s bad enough that you’re already dodging antsy pedestrians and public transport—but then, a truck pulls up next to you. Shiny, brand new, it’s almost twice the size of your own soccer mom SUV, and it’s one hair’s breadth away from slipping into your lane.

Or, how about you roll out of the airport after seven hours of flights, half-asleep and entirely exhausted. You wait for your luggage, wait for three rounds of the bus before you finally get escorted out to the parking lot, and you can’t find it. You were one hundred percent certain you parked in this row of this lot. You even saved the location in your phone this time. But you’re looking down the aisle and you can’t see a damn thing… because your car is hidden between two massive trucks. Which then makes it impossible to see anything when you back up.

It is, without a doubt, one of the most truly terrible experiences in the entire world.

So therefore the only reasonable option is to make big, huge trucks legal only if you are using them for work purposes. Because there is literally no reason why anyone would need one of these beastly machines for their everyday driving—and definitely not in the city.


It just seems absurd. Why do you, A Single Human Being With Just One Suitcase For Work, need a jacked up pickup to go about your daily business. What are you hauling, friend? When you’re driving from suburbia to the city for your desk job and back to suburbia, what purpose does it serve? You, my friend, are a hazard. You are too big. The rest of us cannot see over you. The only answer is for me to buy a bigger vehicle, which only makes this problem worse!

Pickups have their purpose. They are certainly important for transporting construction items or pieces of furniture or honestly just a whole lot of accoutrements when you’re out camping. And that’s fine. Please, feel free to drive them in those cases—you’re certainly one-upping the carrying capacity of my Mazda 2.


And I’m sure there are plenty of reasonable, responsible, everyday pickup drivers who aren’t big buttheads and don’t purchase cars that are far too big for any form of daily existence. You aren’t the problem, of course—but there are enough of your truck driving compatriots who make things so difficult for the rest of us that they’ve gone ahead and ruined things for everyone.

But there is no reason why it should be your everyday transport vehicle. It is inefficient. It is obnoxious. It makes life painful for the rest of us in our reasonably sized vehicles, who respect that a lane is a lane and a parking spot is a parking spot: that these clearly defined lines are clearly defined for a reason, for just one vehicle at a time. Parking, driving, seeing, changing lanes, merging, just existing in general… it would be so much easier without the plague of big pickup trucks on the road.


You are welcome to prove me wrong. Bring your best defense of these beasts and try to change my mind—but I’m warning you, I’m pretty set in my ways

Weekends at Jalopnik. Managing editor at A Girl's Guide to Cars. Lead IndyCar writer and assistant editor at Frontstretch. Novelist. Motorsport fanatic.

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I would never own a full-sized pickup(except for maybe a SRT10), but warning bells go off when someone starts opining on what everyone else should drive. I can see similar arguments made against V8 ponycars- two inefficient, too big, too powerful, etc. My overriding vehicular ownership philosophy is: What car or truck I choose to drive is absolutely none of your business. I won’t try to dictate what you should drive, and all I ask is that you accord me the same courtesy.