Pickup Trucks in America Are Literally as Big as Tanks

Lisa Steuer McArdle
· 4 min read
It’s no secret that Americans love their
pickup trucks
and want features, comfort, and space to lug around people and all kinds of cargo.
But it's not just contractors or people in building and construction that like big pickup trucks. It's regular Americans, too. In facts, a recent analysis found that trucks in the U.S. are nearly as big as the tanks used in World War II, according to
A Soviet tank T-34 from the World War II period.

Almost as big as tanks

Vice's comparison of American pickup trucks was spurred by a similar comparison made in the UK. American trucks are much larger than those in the UK and Europe, though, so more analysis was needed.
For this comparison, Vice used several popular tanks used in World War II. These medium-sized tanks were the American M4 Sherman, the German Panzer Mk III, and the Soviet T-34-85.
The length, width, and height of the tanks were charted against the same specifications for medium-duty pickup trucks and SUVs. The American trucks all shared nearly the same measurements as well, regardless of manufacturer.
The findings were that there wasn't a big difference in size between the medium-duty pickups and the medium-sized World War II tanks.
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American trucks just keep getting bigger

This progression of pickups from functional small job haulers to tank status has been a gradual one.
Back in the 1970s,
Inside Hook
reports, pickup trucks in America were imports of whatever was available in the global market. There weren't pickups specifically designed for US drivers in mind.
This trend lasted until the mid-1990s, when automakers started making pickup trucks for the American market.
A former truck developer for Toyota told Inside Hook that the Toyota Tacoma in 1995 was Toyota's first model designed for the US. In each subsequent generation, the Tacoma and other models like the Tundra got bigger.
Other automakers like GM and Dodge followed suit and extended wheel bases to accommodate extended and crew cabs, marketing for powerful, spacious trucks.
Consumer Reports
analysis found that since 2000, the height of pickup trucks is increasing as well and is up an average of 11%. That number may seem small, but it translates into the front hoods of pickups being 55 or more inches high, the overall height of a regular sedan.
Weight has increased too, with trucks being about 24% heavier in 2018 compared to 2000.
Some automakers are releasing pickup truck models that fall under the classic small or mini-truck category.
The 2022 Ford Maverick and the 2022 Hyundai Santa Cruz are small trucks built on SUV platforms, according to
Motor Trend
. These trucks are designed to cater to the growing segment yearning for small truck options.
These models reportedly don't skimp on power or towing capacity, with the standard Maverick being able to tow up to 2,000 pounds.
They also have the benefit of better gas mileage, something on the minds of a lot of consumers who are choosing EVs and more economical car options as a result of rising gas prices.
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