Mid Week Match-Up: Toy Hauler For Ckleerun

It
is Wednesday, so that means time for another episode of our reader’s favorite game of finding out how much you can get for your kids from a group of traveling Gypsies — also known as  Mid Week Match-Up!  This week’s MWMU request comes from Ckleerun who writes:


I am looking for a cheap(ish) and capable “toy hauler” and foul-weather driver.

I found a 16-passenger E250 which, for $3500, would tow a track car and
haul a motorcycle inside while doubling (tripling, really) as a bunk.
Realistically this type of usage would occur maybe once a year, and my
wife’s reaction to this level of overkill suggests I need to look
elsewhere.

Realistically, all I *need* is something reliable that will tow a
minimum of 1000lbs without being too ugly. Bonus points for the ability
to tow 5000lbs. (Since “ugly” is subjective, let me state that I’m
perfectly okay with a Honda Element. 

I’ve also used “hail|salvage” when
searching CL.) This thing doesn’t have to be pretty, but nondescript is
preferred to eyesore since it will be street-parked. MPG is not a big
concern as this will get used only as needed, maybe 10%-20% of my annual
miles.

My experience with Toyota and Ford products suggests a late-90s Tundra
or F150 would probably be the “smart” choice, but I am wondering if your
readers can surprise me with some other ideas… something with a hint
of style. But it also needs to not beat me up during a 4-5 hour road
trip, so that beautiful 1966 Power Wagon is right out. For budget I’d
prefer to stay closer to $3500, but $6K is not out of the question
either.

DT E-i-C Vince:  My first thought was that you need the Beast…but if you have a few more bucks to spend, take a look at a used F-150 pickup.  Like this 1998 Ford F-150 XL Supercab 4X4 here on eBay bidding for $2,500 with 1 day to go, located in Levittown, PA.  You get a Triton V8, supercab (small back seats), 4-wheel-drive, and a vehicle that isn’t so ugly your wife won’t ride in it.