SHTF Truck Idea: Use What the Terrorists Use?
The other day I was pondering the fuel possibilities for a SHTF truck and mentioned that for a variety of reasons I had settled on diesel. But I hadn’t quite decided which truck until someone mentioned that Toyota is coming up with a diesel Tundra soon.
Toyota makes a great truck, and the diesel Tundra is now at the top of my list. But then I got to (over-)thinking: if you’re going to get a SHTF pickup from them, then there’s a much better option, depending on where you live: the Toyota Hilux truck is popular with Middle Eastern jihadis because of its versatility and reliability.
“The Toyota Hilux is everywhere,” Andrew Exum, a former US Army Ranger who is now the US deputy assistant secretary of defense for Middle East policy, told Newsweek. “It’s the vehicular equivalent of the AK-47. It’s ubiquitous to insurgent warfare. And actually, recently, also counterinsurgent warfare. It kicks the hell out of the Humvee.”
The Hilux is apparently a durable truck that has proven useful for terrorists who are fighting against lightly armed special forces.
The truck is “fast, maneuverable, and packs a big punch [when it’s mounted with] a 50-caliber [machine gun] that easily defeats body armor on soldiers and penetrates lightly armored vehicles as well,” Alastair Finlan, who specializes in strategic studies at Aberystwyth University in the UK, told Newsweek.
Yep, the Hilux is indeed the AK-47 of trucks, which is about as good of an endorsement as you can get for a SHTF truck. The reason it didn’t make my list, though, is that it’s pretty much impossible to get your hands on one here in America, especially a diesel version.
Thanks to our import laws, you’ll have to settle for a 25-year-old model, and even then there are lengthy wait times for one that’s in decent shape. The Hilux is hugely in demand pretty much everywhere, which makes one wonder why Toyota won’t sell them here in North America.
That said, a 25-year-old model would probably be better than a new one for SHTF purposes, given the relative lack of electronics. And if many of the comments in that previous post’s highly informative comments thread (seriously, go read it) are to be believed, the older diesel engines are preferred because they’re easier to modify to run on cooking oil and other fuels.
So, older Toyota Hilux import as a SHTF truck, or hack something together with a Tacoma and an aftermarket older Cummins diesel engine? What’s your take?