Light trucks no longer hold the keys to the bank vault. But they haven't fallen on days of rocks and rubble, either.
Last month this column looked at SUVs, the onetime darlings of the truck world. Their sales are down, but they aren't about to fade away. Now let's peek at the rest of the horde -- pickups, vans and crossovers.
Right off the bat, be assured that the United States is still a nation of truck drivers. Light trucks had 51.6 percent of the market in the first three months of this year.
That's about 1.1 percentage points less than in last year's first quarter. But anyone who thinks cars are making a comeback has been spending too much time in the winter sun.
Sales of pickups are down, but the 2.0 percent decline is hardly precipitous. Minivans have dipped 4.4 percent this year, which is to be expected with the great popularity of crossovers. The half-SUV, half-station-wagon vehicles are breeding like rabbits, both in sales figures and in the number of choices on the market.
At the moment, there are 29 crossover nameplates, and four more are about to debut. Not quite as many as the Heinz 57 varieties, but stick around.
Used to be, everyone had to have an SUV. Today everyone has to have a crossover. What will be next?