Jason Lancaster is the editor and founder of TundraHeadquarters.com. He has nearly a decade of experience on the retail side of the auto industry, and another decade of experience of the part and accessory side of the industry.
UPDATE: This year, Ford is gearing up to release an all-new truck at the 2014 Detroit Auto Show (Tim will be there on January 13 and 14). With this in mind, we thought it would be fun to rehash this article about trade in value.
One of the benefits of buying a new Tundra is that it is consistently at the top of the industry in terms of resale value. All things being equal, a Tundra holds it’s value as well as or better than an F150, Ram, or Silverado/Sierra – at least according to studies released by KBB.com, Edmunds.com, AOL autos, and many others over the last few years. As a result of all this positive press, many Tundra owners expect top dollar for their trucks…but how does a Tundra owner figure out what their truck is really worth?
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If you are at all interested in future tech, you have probably heard of DARPA, the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency. Founded after the surprise launch of Sputnik in 1958, DARPA commissions research for the DOD. Among their many accomplishments was inventing the internet (sorry, Al Gore), not to mention GPS and stealth aircraft. A host of smaller technologies, from Google Maps to Siri, began as or were based on DARPA research.
Given this pedigree, DARPA deserves attention when they set their sights on something new, and the latest technology the white-coats are developing is right up our dirt-road: robotic quadrupeds. What’s most interesting about these robots for us, dear reader, is that they may one day be the successor to ATVs and rock crawlers.
Perhaps class-action lawsuits are good for our society, but I’m not seeing much evidence of that. Instead, I’m seeing bogus class-action lawsuits levied with little cause at every turn. Toyota settled a class-action lawsuit for $1.6 billion earlier this year, despite the fact that no one has ever been able to prove Toyota’s electronic throttle systems have a flaw. The law firms behind that class-action suit supposedly earned about $200 million in fees for their efforts, begging the question as to whether this class-action lawsuit was legitimate.
Now let’s be clear – I’m not saying that the lawyers behind this class-action business are all a bunch of greedy, blood-sucking scum who perverted the legal system for their own financial gain. I’m just saying that I think that’s a motivation for some of the lawyers involved.
Unfortunately, it’s Ford’s turn to face their own class-action lawsuit with dubious value. Specifically, Ford is being sued because they failed to provide “instructions on ‘what to do’ should an [sudden acceleration] event occur could mean the difference between life and death” to owners of older Ford vehicles, while offering these instructions to newer vehicle owners.
That’s right – Ford is being sued because they updated their owners manuals.
Perhaps out of an interest to keep Tesla in the news, Elon Musk suggested yesterday that his company might build an electric pickup truck that would compete with Ford’s F-150 in the next 5 years. To that I say “I’ll be the blue guy,” a sarcastic way of saying “Don’t hold your breath.”
Here’s why I think the notion of a Tesla pickup in 5 years is beyond fanciful.