Thursday, July 31, 2008
So long, old friend...
I bought my truck soon after Amy and I got married. It was January 2002 and I had just started seeing the ‘new’ Dodge Ram 1500s (that body style debuted in 2002). I was interested in a Nissan King Cab and I think it was selling for about $17,000. I then saw an ad for Maxwell Dodge in Taylor. They had a Ram 1500 for $15,500. It was a lot of truck for the money. It could easily (and comfortably) carry three people, which the Nissan couldn’t.
The RAM didn’t get very good gas mileage (about 15-16 MPG). At that time, it wasn’t a huge concern, because I lived just over a quarter of a mile from work and gas was 99 cents a gallon. Other than the mileage, it has been a perfect vehicle. It has never been back to the dealer for any service. I have had to have two brake jobs (at about 40,000 and 80,000 miles) due to the amount of stop and go driving. The back tires lasted about 70,000 miles and the front ones about 80,000 miles. I had to have a sensor replaced last year to pass Georgia’s exhaust inspection. The original battery is still in the truck, it’s never had a tune-up and it runs better than the day it came off the lot.
There is some wear and tear. Both the outside rear mirrors were missing their cover, so they look funny. The left outside mirror is busted, because I backed into a pole at work (only the mirror was damaged). The dash is cracked in a couple of places. The windshield is cracked almost all the way across. Someone broke into the truck a couple of years ago and messed up the passenger door handle and trim (before busting the window). There’s a bad spot on the right rear fender, where something rubbed the paint off and there’s some surface rust there.
It is as comfortable a vehicle as you can drive. We have driven it from Texas to Alabama and back with and without a trailer. It’s never left me stranded. It’s just gotten too expensive to drive. Recently, Amy has been driving my truck to the MARTA station about a mile from our house. I’ve been driving her Passat, which has resulted in a huge gas savings, but also additional wear and tear on her car. The Passat is 18 months old and has over 30,000 miles on it. We just can’t continue to wear out the nice car at this rate.