Sturdy.

The pickup turned over 143,000 miles this morning. That’s 230,136 kilometers. Not that far in terms of distance. It’s quite some distance in terms of time, reliability, and, well, companionship.

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It is a 1999 model year Mazda B2500. The 2500 denotes its 2.5 liter engine, which I learned many years ago is a little small to pull a 3000 pound vehicle. It has been a light duty truck best suited to hauling a few sheets of plywood or sheet rock, several 4×4 posts, what have you.

I had always wanted a pickup. This one fit my wants and wants, so I bought it – in 2000. It has almost always been the secondary vehicle which is why it has so few miles for its age. It still fits my needs.

It has some rust. A few dash lights are out, the a/c died years ago. And yet it has been a largely reliable partner for approaching 20 years. I might lift a glass and smoke a cigar to mark having such a sturdy vehicle for so long.

My truck

My truck

I bought this 1999 Mazda B2500 new off the lot in January 2000. The shell was added in 2002 and has been removed perhaps three times.

It’s a ’99 model and has been an extraordinarily reliable vehicle. Though it’s almost 14 years old it has around 132,000 miles because for much of its life it’s been the secondary vehicle therefore not driven as much. There are a few scratches yet is virtually no rust, still runs on the original clutch and tranny, probably needs a new power steering pump. Speaking of tranny it has a five speed manual linked to the 2.5 liter engine.

My major (and really only) complaint is that it’s woefully underpowered, which made merging onto IH-35 in downtown Austin an adventure in tooth-grinding as I wound the engine up near the read line simply to approach highway speed as the merge lane came to an all-too-quick end.

Having said that it gets decent mileage (22-25 mpg highway), is fairly comfortable for two people, and the stereo has no blown speakers so it still rocks. I do not permit the dogs to ride in the bed so two dogs fit somewhat comfortably behind the seat, which is where Achilles and Stella rode when I moved to Canada. Three can be stuffed in for short trips.

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We hope to get several more years of service from it.