Pick-up trucks 'are the new midlife crisis purchase'
Wives buying into the "manly man" image for their partners
Middle-aged men are increasingly buying pick-up trucks as part of their "midlife crisis" purchases instead of huge powerful motorcycles, it appears.
According to one major car and motorcycle dealer, it's something that's being encouraged by their wives who are cheering on something they see as a safer purchase on four wheels rather than two.
They're also buying top-of-the-range pick-ups with all the add-ons, with wives paying for all the extras to complete what they see as a film star "manly" image, ColinAppleyard.com Limited says.
"With both various pick-ups in our range, we're seeing dozens of middle-aged men driving off with larger-than-life American-style trucks," said Managing Director Robin Appleyard.
"The incredible thing is – while we sell pick-ups to traders and the traditional White Van Man, these are office workers, executives and just everyday blokes who want to drive something that's not a family saloon. And wives are paying a more than equal part in the process."
ColinAppleyard.com first noticed the phenomenon last year as wives were becoming just as involved in the purchase of brand new trucks as their husbands, to the point that they were insisting on paying for optional extras such as winches, tow bars and tents to "bling out" their new pick-ups.
"He wanted a great big Harley Davidson for his midlife crisis," Melissa told Colin Appleyard of her husband, "And there's no way I'm letting him get up on two wheels. He hasn't even ridden a pushbike in twenty years."
Janet told us: "I've paid extra for the double cab so we can take the grandkids out into the country. We wanted to turn this into an adventure thing for the whole family."
"It's clear that wives and partners are playing an equal role in these purchases," said Robin, "Either out of concern for their loved ones, or because they want to see their money spent on something useful!"
Asked why they were encouraging their husbands and partners to buy top-end pick-up trucks, most admitted that their motives weren't entirely to save their husbands' blushes or to get him the best deal. In fact, some wives let slip that it's to cope with a midlife crisis of their own:
"I want him to be like those blokes you see in the films," said Wendy. "You know – rugged and manly. Also, with the hardtop it's great for getting the shopping home from Ikea."
The spike in purchases of pick-ups among older families looks set to continue, ColinAppleyard.com says.
"What starts as a midlife crisis thing becomes a family purchase that costs far less than you think," says Robin.
"And as a family business, domestic bliss is something we encourage."