1987 Ford Ranger vs. Toyota Pickup TV Ad: Throwback Thursday

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Even in the era of bare-bones midsize trucks, the Ford Ranger out-equipped the Toyota Pickup.

This week’s “Throwback Thursday” video features a classic tv commercial for the 1987 Ford Ranger. In this particular advertisement, a couple of brothers are arguing over whose small truck is better. As the title leads you to believe, one brother is driving the new 1987 Ford Ranger, while the other is driving a 1987 Toyota Pickup. The two brothers discuss the fact that both trucks are about the same price,

The two brothers discuss the fact that both trucks are about the same price, both have AM/FM/Cassette radios, they both have five-speed manual transmissions and they both have power brakes. As a result, the Toyota brother demands to know what the Ford has that the small Japanese pickup doesn’t.


According to this video by my old box of VHS tapes, the 1987 Ford Ranger rocks power steering, power windows and power door locks, cast aluminum wheels, a “special gauge package”, and a fuel injected engine. Furthermore, interval windshield wipers and Halogen headlights are touted as real “upgrades.” In this day and age, it’s crazy to think that power steering, aluminum wheels, fuel injection and Halogen headlights were premium features. Of course, the Toyota did not have the aforementioned features.

Keep in mind that when Toyota began seeing sales success in the US, it was because their cars and trucks cost considerably less than comparable American vehicle. On top of pointing out the differences between the two trucks, this classic Ford Ranger commercial is awesomely ’80s, with plaid shirts, poofy hair, and a sweet suede jacket,


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Patrick Rall is a regular contributor to LS1Tech and JK Forum, among other auto sites.

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