But wow, I did a test drive of a Ford Sport Trac, and I am still salivating. This thing has HORSES under the hood! Pedal to the metal, and wham, you're doing 70. Straight-6 engine, and someone actually thought to put the engine computer in the cab, not where the electronics fry out. (They tell me you can hook it up to a laptop and run engine diagnostics yourself. I used to work on my F350 and my Fiesta myself...am I up to doing high-tech? ;-) ) You can even start it from 500 feet away. Welcome to the brave new world! I haven't figured out if it's Star Trek, James Bond, or the Batmobile
But damn, this thing is well designed. The engine is sensibly laid out, the bed is high-tech plastic, there's a cargo holder that swings out for more load space, tie-downs AND a roof rack, a real spare (up under bed), real gauges (analog, not digital, including oil pressure), tow hooks. I'm seeing myself in the outback of the Yolly Bolly Wilderness, fording streams. I see myself hauling Civil War stuff. I see myself taking all those obscure roads into...wherever, and sleeping in the pickup bed, looking up at the stars... It's a fantasy vehicle for folks who actually use macho cars for their intended purpose. Folks like me.
I admit I'm also thinking back to my 1970 F350 crew cab, known as "The Pet Monster," very fondly. The Sport Trac is a crew cab.
And it's rated *very* highly in all the evaluations. It even has its own fan site on the web. This is the truck I want! I feel disloyal to my beloved '87 Jimmy, but the bottom line is that it has over 240,000 miles, and the tailgate and the automatic door locks have stopped working. And it's NOT going to last forever, much as I might hope.
However, the one I drove was maybe a little TOO loaded for me. I really do prefer a stick shift. Call me weird. No moonroof. Eventually, they all leak. And I don't have a 6-CD stereo at HOME, for heaven's sake! (I keep thinking of the laser skipping all over as one goes over an infinitude of ruts and chuckholes...) It also cost damned near $30K. But oh, what an experience! So I did some checking. Hmm, a less plush version for $24K... oh, I am tempted!