A viral Reddit post showcases Australians’ reactions to the increasing popularity of the American pickup truck in the Down Under.

A Reddit post from an Australian user has grown in popularity, as users chime in about their disdain for the growing popularity of American pickups in the Down Under.

“Why are there suddenly more American ‘trucks’ on the roads? They’re an absolute eyesore. Extremely square and ‘boxey’ looking. Why are people picking this over our utes?”

More quickly chimed in, adding their own criticism of the rising trend.

“We don’t make utes anymore,” one person wrote, with another adding: “We should never have let the car industry leave our shores – we should have fought to maintain our place in the manufacturing world, especially given what has happened during the Covid years.”

“It’s because (of) the government Covid increase in tax offset for equipment purchases. It increased to the point where you could afford these utes, $150k I believe. So many more started to be purchased recently,” another claimed.

The Reddit users under the post took to describing the vehicles as “big and obnoxious” and “vile petrol guzzlers”.

In 2021, General Motors reported 2118 sales of the Chevy Silverado. Ram reported the sale of 604 pickups in September, up 45% over the same month in 2021. Ford aims to begin production in Australia as early as next year.

An automotive analyst who works at comparison site Finder, Alex Jeffs, spoke to AU news about what Australians are currently looking for in a vehicle.

“Because of that, these global brands have come up with ways to bring their left-hand drive vehicles out here and convert them in a fairly cost-effective manner,” he explained.

“Aussie manufacturing of vehicles may be gone, but the right-hand conversion industry is thriving. Back in mid-2019, RAM even had to move to 24-hour production to keep up with demand.”

“Covid for instance saw the rise of the staycation. With more people buying caravans, many of these large trucks have much larger towing capacities than your standard ute,” he said.

“The popular RAM 1500 can tow 4.5 tonnes compared to the Toyota HiLux, which is one of Australia’s favourites and good for 3.5 tonnes.

“You also see a lot of them kitted out with toolboxes and the like in the back and as some of these large trucks are being used for work purposes, there are tax incentives that make them appealing to businesses.”

Jeffs continued, talking about how changes in manufacturing processes have led to this recent wave of American pickups.

“The main reason (behind the growth) is these brands like RAM and Chevrolet partnering with local manufacturers to start converting … and now it’s being done at scale,” he said.

“The demand was always there, but we’d never had factory-backed conversions before, which is why we’ve never seen the volumes we’re seeing now.”

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