The channel, the website, and the people behind it
Pickup Truck + SUV Talk is a fun mix of new pickup and SUV news with a splash of classic trucks. Our channel creator Tim Esterdahl is an accomplished freelance automotive journalist and a self-described pickup snob. He is joined by veteran automotive journalist Jill Ciminillo who has a knack for fitting in small trunk spaces as well as being a top-notch journalist. Also on the team is Texas country girl Erica Mueller who brings both her life experiences living on a rural farm, but also her web design expertise to make us all look good.
Over the past few years, we have seen massive growth through our unique viewpoints now with more than 62k subscribers and 19.5 million lifetime views on YouTube as well as 150k monthly website views. We hope you’ll follow along as we cover topics important to you and blaze a new trail in automotive journalism with our down to earth, practical viewpoints on vehicles.
Automotive Journalist Tim Esterdahl has been covering the industry since 2011 with his work appearing in numerous high profile media outlets. His continued work and passion for all things trucks and SUVs lead to the creation of Pickup Truck +SUV Talk in September 2016. Starting off as a podcast, the outlet has grown into a YouTube channel and a growing website. Plus, Tim is widely recognized for his truck and SUV knowledge leading to other outlets quoting him and/or sharing his work.
His first truck was a brand new 2003 Chevy S-10 and he has also owned a 2013 Toyota Tundra as well as a really cool 1963 International C1200 through the years. Through the success of the media outlet, he plans to continue purchasing many new trucks in the coming years to broaden our coverage of the market.
Tim is currently wrenching on a 1962 Chevy C10 given to him as a gift from his family. It is an old farm truck owned by his wife’s grandfather. After nearly 20 years sitting in a barn, he recently brought it back to life.
He has a degree in Journalism from Metro State University in Denver and is a married father of three living in Western Nebraska.
Though Jill is relatively new to focusing on pickup trucks, she’s been in the automotive biz for nearly two decades. She launched her career as the automotive editor for Pioneer Press Newspapers, a weekly suburban newspaper owned by the Sun-Times News Group with a circulation of more than 500,000.
She started writing reviews with a much-needed female perspective and a keen eye toward what many general consumers are seeking by covering topics such as driving position, cargo space, vehicle amenities and seat comfort. This focus on consumers’ needs and interests has been a hallmark throughout her career, as she transitioned first to a position as the online automotive editor for the Chicago Sun-Times, and then worked as the first automotive blogger for the Chicago Tribune. Following those roles, she became the online automotive editor for Sinclair Broadcast Group, which owns or operates nearly 200 TV stations in 88 markets.
Throughout her 20-year career, Jill has watched as media distribution platforms have evolved and has striven to be an early adopter with new technologies, embracing Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, Facebook, podcasting, blogging and now TikTok, as viable content distribution platforms, reaching diverse audiences in the wide variety of ways they want to receive content.
Jill also has the unique distinction of being the first (and only) female president in the history of the Midwest Automotive Media Association (MAMA). During her 2-year stint as president, she not only planned and executed two successful (and crash-free) Spring Rally events at Road America but also raised $100,000 to establish a journalism scholarship endowment at Northwestern University, in honor of MAMA’s first president, Jim Mateja.
Where else can you find Jill writing and talking about cars (and trucks, of course!):
In her other life, Jill is a marathon runner, having completed 11 Chicago Marathons and finally hitting her time goal of beating Oprah (yes, she ran a marathon) in 2019. She trains marathon runners every summer and serves on the Board of Directors for the Chicago Area Runner’s Association as the Vice President.
Not many people happen upon automotive journalism by accident, but that’s exactly what happened to Erica Mueller. A WordPress developer by trade, Erica was approached by a Canadian client about possibly reviewing a car only available in the US market. Being a huge fan of cars, she said yes and the rest is history.
From that very first Ford Flex review in 2009, Erica has been hooked on driving, photographing and writing about cars. Tho we think it’s safe to say her love of cars began much earlier considering her five-year-old self had a collection of Hotwheels that made all her friends jealous. Mueller attributes her love for vehicles of all kinds to her grandfather who was a mechanic.
Erica’s first car was a 1993 Jeep Grand Cherokee Laredo which she purchased on eBay. Over the years she has owned a 1995 Chevy Blazer, 2000 Oldsmobile Alero, 2003 Dodge Durango, 2010 Toyota Camry and now drives a 2020 Ram 1500 EcoDiesel.
Some of her favorite activities include off-roading, driving at high speeds on race tracks, camping, gardening and baking. Erica and her husband live in north Texas with their three kids, three cats, two dogs and an ever-growing number of chickens and ducks.
Sometimes you just need cash in a hurry. This is especially true when it comes to covering the cost of expensive new trucks, or shiny new SUV options. Fortunately, a title loan can be granted in around 24 hours, thus turning a car loan into financial leverage. Title loan lenders guarantee transparent conditions, reasonable installments, and a fast transaction, for a safe, easy way to obtain additional funds. In these uncertain times, car title loans are becoming more popular than ever, and here. Here is why they matter so much, and what you must be aware of before signing on that dotted line. How car title loans work As a potential borrower, you should always familiarize yourself with all of the available offers at your disposal before selecting a certain option. Find a loan that will provide you with the best fit for your needs, and look for an online form that you can fill out to expedite the process. Lender package options from Car Title Loans Online on Instant Loans USA are an excellent example of this process. Just be sure to carefully read the requirements contained in the regulations, for there are many laws that must be followed. Furthermore, one must recognize that the lender will become a co-owner of the vehicle. How much can I get for my car title loan? Yes, it is possible to get a title loan online via a direct deposit the very same day that you apply for the loan. In fact, it’s possible to get title loans completely online with direct deposit same day title loans completely online with direct deposit same day on Instant Loans USA. No store visit or inspection is required. Prior to applying for a loan, be sure to find a trustworthy lender, research the maximum amount of collateral available, and so on… Evaluating the vehicle by using a calculator on the lender’s website can help expedite this process. Just know that these calculation services do not always show an objective assessment, as the amount may be overstated to attract customers. Therefore, if you want to get the maximum possible amount for your car, you should know precisely what it is worth, and be prepared to refuse any lender services that do not suit your threshold. Taking a title loan from a non-bank corporation will take place in several stages: 1) The client determines the subject of collateral – the vehicle, the desired amount, and the period for which they would prefer to receive a loan. 2) An appraiser checks the condition of the automobile and its vehicle history report and determines whether it is pledged to another lender. 3) Coordination of details and drawing up of said contract. 4) Issuance of a loan in the amount determined via the previous stages, as well as transferring 51% of car rights to the lender. What collateral is accepted for a car title loan? Lenders accept collateral on vehicles that are in good condition and mechanically sound. The age of the vehicle is also limited to automobiles no older than 10-12 years. You can also apply for an SUV car title loan if you need it. Unless it’s a mint Chevy C10 you are trying to get a title loan on, wear and tear of older vehicles will almost always reduce their liquidity. So, if you are unable to repay the debt to the lender on an older vehicle, it may be difficult to sell. How much can I get for a title loan? To assess the value of a car pledge, specialists must compare the vehicle in question against similar ones within the used vehicle market in the region. Vehicles manufactured by the same manufacturer in the same country, in the same year, of the same grade are up for comparison. During the assessment, the lender takes into account the condition of the vehicle, the presence or absence of damage and malfunctions, tuning, and any additional equipment. The first factor can lower your deposit amount. But how you invest in your vehicle can significantly increase its value. In addition, a potential borrower can improve the condition of their vehicle by deep-cleaning and conducting any overdue routine maintenance. A buffed scratch here, some new seat upholstery there… it all adds up on lending day. The bottom line However, it is almost impossible to calculate all of this on one’s own. This is why real-world examples of a car title loan have become so popular, and why people visit investopedia.com. Roughly calculating the cost of a pledge requires finding the market value of an automobile that is identical to your vehicle in the area in which you reside. This means scanning auto sales sites and skimming prices until something in the ballpark of what you are looking for surfaces. Just note that a lender will almost always take the lower limit value and then add 10-20% to it. From this amount, the interest guaranteed by the lender can then be deducted. So if the minimum cost of your truck or SUV is $40,000, the lender will take $44,000 as a basis, and then offer you 80% of this set amount. Just remember that this is only an approximate price, which may change after a vehicle inspection. Also note that if you are unable to fully repay the debt to the lender, you will be required to return the difference between the amount of the car sale and the debt owed.
Even with an array of advanced safety features onboard, thousands of people are swept up in car collisions every day in the U.S. Those who suffer injuries during these road traffic crashes can be entitled to compensation, but only when they are obtained through a claim. However, pursuing these claims can be downright challenging. This is precisely why the following tips for recovering damages from a traffic crash are so significant. Steps to take after a car crash Move to a safe area If you can stop your vehicle, and move to a safe area where you can examine yourself for injuries, always do so. Otherwise, stay in your vehicle until the police or the ambulance arrives. Call the authorities Oftentimes, the onboard tech will notify the police that you have been in a collision. However, not all trucks or SUVs can automatically respond to a crash and notify the authorities. In that case, you should contact the police on your own after moving to a safe area. Document the scene If you can do so, take videos and pictures of the damage caused by the accident and the surrounding environment. Be sure to get the contact information of the driver(s) involved and any witnesses as well. Notify your insurance provider Notify your insurance company of any bodily injuries or vehicle damage. However, do not agree to any compensation until you consult an attorney. Contact an attorney After notifying your insurance provider, you should contact a personal injury lawyer to protect your rights and interests post-incident. Establishing liability To recover compensation, you should be able to prove the fault of the other party involved in the collision. Every driver carries this responsibility toward other vehicle operators. Liability is established when the other driver fails to provide a reasonable duty of care. To establish liability, you must be able to submit evidence, such as photographs of the crash scene, medical reports, police reports, witness statements, and traffic citations. This is why many drivers opt for the assistance of an attorney to determine liability. Calculating your economic and non-economic damages Compensation awarded in a traffic crash claim can include economic and noneconomic damages. Economic damages refer to the injured person’s financial losses from the incident, such as medical bills, vehicle or property damage, and lost wages. The noneconomic damages suffered in a car crash can be more difficult to determine. These damages, also known as “pain and suffering,” include mental anguish, disability, disfigurement, and loss of enjoyment of life. Noneconomic damages can be more difficult to calculate than economic damages but are usually higher than economic damages. Factors that influence road traffic collision claims Negligence laws Most states follow a comparative negligence law, and according to this law, the fault of both parties is calculated in the incident. Therefore, the compensation is reduced by your percentage of fault in the crash. However, in some cases, if the claimant is more than 50% at fault, they can be barred from obtaining any compensation. Economic damages You can only obtain compensation if the verifiable costs are supported by evidence. For instance, if you want to reimburse medical bills, your injuries must be verified through medical records that match up with the damages inflicted during the collision. Extent of injuries Your injuries play an important role in determining how much compensation you should receive. If you only suffered mild injuries, it could result in a much lower payout. However, if your injuries are severe and disabling, a higher payout is far more likely. Insurance policy limits Some drivers choose only to carry the minimum insurance required by their state. However, in the event of serious injuries, minimum liability insurance is not enough to cover most expenses. If the at-fault driver does not have adequate insurance or any insurance, you must file a first-party claim with your insurance provider. How long will the claim process take? A traffic crash claim can take a couple of weeks to several months to complete. This timeframe depends heavily on how severe your injuries are and whether the at-fault party accepts responsibility for the collision. For example, if you sustain minor injuries in a traffic crash and the other party admits their fault, the claim could be settled within a few weeks. But your claim can take longer to settle if the case is disputed, as you need to prove the other driver’s fault. Experienced attorneys for auto accidents can guide you on how to get maximum compensation for your suffering and help expedite this process. They can also help you establish liability for the collision and calculate the damages you can recover. While many car collision claims are often settled outside the courtroom, you can take your case to court via a lawsuit if the other party is unwilling to admit fault. In this sort of circumstance, it is probably best to call 1-800-Injured so that you can have an attorney and medical referral service on file.
Those who are in search of a truck that can handle any job, need not spend a fortune. Trucks are expensive, and with so many package options out there, it’s sometimes hard to determine which platform is best suited to your specific needs. Do you opt for a smaller truck and aim to save money on fuel and upfront sticker pricing? Or do you go all-in on a towing rig or 4×4 beast for off-road adventures? Isuzu has developed the perfect solution to this conundrum, with its D-MAX platform sitting squarely in the middle of all that makes a pickup truck so spectacular. With three different cab sizes and two-bed lengths, this truck is built to handle any job or occupancy level. A powerful diesel engine means you can tow heavy loads with ease, and the comfortable interior makes for pleasant long-distance drives. All this and more make the Isuzu D-MAX a perfect pickup truck for most buyers in Australia and overseas, with the following perks being the more notable. Features that make the Isuzu D-MAX the best pickup truck The Isuzu D-MAX is widely regarded as the best pickup truck for any job. This is because it has a number of features that make it an extremely versatile and robust machine, capable of tackling all sorts of tasks with ease. Knowing this, it’s no wonder why so many people choose to purchase the Isuzu D-MAX whenever they need a reliable and powerful pickup truck. Here are just some of the great features that make this vehicle so popular… 1. Outstanding performance The Isuzu D-MAX is undoubtedly one of the most sought-after names in the international market today. Its comprehensive performance package plays a crucial role in that respect, as it can both haul heavy loads and wheel in the wild without issue. For more details on this portion of the D-MAX’s genetics, check out Price My Car, as it provides a more comprehensive overview of this vehicle. 2. Exceptional build quality The Isuzu D-MAX is one tough truck. Built to overcome virtually any terrain, it’s a rig that’s ready for the unexpected and built to last. Beyond that, the D-MAX’s safety credentials are even more impressive; with a 5-star ANCAP rating, you can rest assured that you and your passengers are in good hands no matter where the road or trail takes you. 3. Spacious and comfortable interior The Isuzu D-MAX offers outstanding passenger space and levels of comfort, making it the ideal vehicle for road trips. Its five-person seating layout provides ample room to stretch out and relax during a journey, with a quiet cabin supporting this fact. Heated seats for chilly winter days, storage compartments galore, and loads of tech to keep you informed and entertained all make their mark. 4. Advanced technology Speaking of infotainment, the Isuzu D-MAX is a fantastic pickup truck for tech fans. From its 7-inch touchscreen display and Bluetooth connectivity to the built-in reverse camera and safety mitigation suite, this truck has all the high-tech bells and whistles. So whether you’re in search of convenience or safety features, you can trust that the D-MAX gives you access to the best features out of any pickup truck in its class. 5. Five-year warranty Investing in an Isuzu D-MAX is a wise choice, especially if it’s a five-year warranty that you are after. Not only is this one of the most comprehensive warranties available for any pickup truck on the planet, but it reflects the faith that Isuzu has in its products. In return, you get peace of mind in knowing that no matter what this vehicle has you covered. With this substantial assurance on your side, you can be sure that your new truck purchase will provide both dependability and value for years to come. Conclusion When it comes to pickup trucks, there’s no doubt that the Isuzu D-MAX is a great choice. It has an impressive range of features and capabilities, making it an ideal vehicle for any job. This includes its exceptional reliability and durability, as well as its powerful performance and off-road capabilities. Plus, with its wide range of trim options, there’s sure to be a package or two that fits your lifestyle and budget. So whether you’re looking for a rugged workhorse or an off-roader with plenty of style and comfort, the Isuzu D-MAX has you covered. Don’t settle for anything less than the best, for this is a pickup truck that you can trust, no matter what adventure or task comes your way.
When it comes to choosing the right tire for your truck or SUV, a number of considerations must be carefully weighed. Some of these may include reliability, customer ratings, expert reviews, stopping distance, tread block design, fuel efficiency, brand, and perhaps most importantly… budget. Isn’t it funny how something as simple as a tire can be so complex? For while something as simple as a budget tire may not always be the bargain it promises down the road. While most commuters have a set goal of purchasing quality passenger car tires at affordable prices, there are certain pros and cons associated with pretty much any compound they procure. May it be a budget buy or a set of premium tires, there are perks and pitfalls to each that must be considered. Expensive tires vs. affordable tires Let’s not beat around the bush. A set of new tires can be really expensive! While budget tires might be the most affordable option, premium tires have their own perks. However, being that prices on everything have gone up recently, budget tires have become far more appealing to many, and not just because of their pricing. Advantages of affordable tires The primary reason why most drivers choose budget tires over premium tires is financial constraint or frugality. This is especially true when it’s an unplanned purchase, like when a blowout occurs. Although they might lack many of the advanced features and engineering of pricier compounds, most budget tires nowadays are of solid design. Furthermore, they are almost always tested to a point where they conform to international regulations. Increased NVH levels, poor fuel economy, less grip, and inferior lifespan all remain real concerns though, so keep that in mind if you opt for a bargain tire. With that being said, many people still invest in premium tire compounds over budget tires, and here’s why… Advantages of premium tires With premium tires, there are a number of associated benefits that simply cannot be achieved on a set of budget tires. That price tag might be steep, but like many higher-quality products, value isn’t just measured upfront. Looking toward the long term, you’ll find that premium tires often end up bringing the highest return on investment. They last longer, and offer a more comfortable driving experience via reduced noise levels, better grip, and more balanced control. Premium tires also help increase overall fuel efficiency, handling, braking, and longevity. Factors to keep in mind when judging quality vs. price When choosing a tire, the following factors should be considered. Durability and grip Be it for everyday driving or off-road adventures, durability ranks high on the list, just beneath budget and brand recognition. Harder tires might last longer and offer greater fuel efficiency, but they tend to suffer in the grip department. In contrast, softer compounds are sticky but wear out quickly. So always check the warranty rating of a specific compound to make sure you are getting the balance your driving style requires. Tread The rubber that is around the outer side of the tire is what directly comes into contact with the ground the most. This is what is commonly referred to as the tread of a tire. The thickness and pattern of the tread not only determines the cost of the compound in question, but its longevity, loudness, and ability to perform in an array of different conditions. The engineering that goes into this portion of the tire is extremely important, hence premium tires run a bit more. Handling Top-tier tires tend to have better handling, which is crucial when it comes to driving basics. Like turning for instance. Safety and performance matter people. Don’t compromise here. Braking distance Last but not least comes braking. Not only should the reduced stopping distance provided by a tire be taken into consideration, but its ability to do so tidily in wet conditions as well. Tires that come with a shorter braking distance are more effective and hence more expensive as well. However, the average trip to the ER tends to be far more pricey than a set of fresh rubber, so bear that in mind when it comes time to buy. Final words Clearly, choosing the right tire for your vehicle depends upon a number of factors, and for many of us, it will never be a simple task. This is precisely why having a proper set of premium tires that are intended to work safely in tandem with your truck or SUV, as well as your driving style should always outweigh your desire to save a few dollars.
When it comes to car repair and maintenance, brake pad replacement is about as routine as it gets. Larger vehicles that are capable of towing heavy loads, or are of a high-performance pedigree may need to have their brake pads replaced more often too. That said, driving style and the grade of the brake pad being used can also make a massive difference in wear. From a materials standpoint, brake pads are made up of durable, complex combination of metallic and earthen-based materials. Ones that can withstand heavy and prolonged levels of friction and pressure, for they are what clamp down on those brake discs, thus stopping the car. But like any grindstone, they too eventually wear thin against the strength of the iron they grasp. Which explains why in the world of racing brake pads are referred to as “consumables.” As these brake pads become worn from extended use, they must be replaced. Failing to do so may result in them damaging the rest of your vehicle’s braking system. Fortunately, this task is not an exceedingly difficult one, especially for the DIY inclined. In just an hour or so, most beginner auto DIYers can replace brake pads on all four corners of their vehicle, and cut down on a ton of labor fees in the process. Here’s how your too can successfully complete this task in your drive or garage one weekend. How to replace brake pads The first step in replacing the brake pads is to have the right tools on hand. A ratchet set with an array of sockets and extensions, a flathead screwdriver, a C-clamp, a car jack, jack stands, and a cold beverage or two round out the basics. You will also want a pair of mechanic gloves to reduce the risk of bloody knuckles, as well as some high temp brake grease, and a set of new brake pads for the vehicle. Brake pads can be purchased at auto parts stores, local mechanic shops, or online. It is never a bad idea to order brake hardware too. Just in case something snaps. Gear collected, park the vehicle on a level surface and apply the parking brake. Next, remove the key from the ignition and disconnect the battery cable to prevent any electrical shorts. Remove the wheel cover or hub cap (if applicable) and after loosening each lug nut a quarter turn, jack the vehicle up until jack stands can be stuffed underneath. Up in the air, remove the wheel, loosen the lower bolt on the caliper, and rotate it upward so as to remove the pads. Slide the old pads out and inspect the rotor. If it seems worn or damaged then you will need to replace it as well. When replacing your brake pads, be sure to do so in pairs. This means that both front and rear brake pads should be replaced at the same time. Additionally, it may be necessary for you to replace all four car brake pads on your vehicle if they are not all from the same set. Doing so will ensure that your car stops in an even and balanced manner. Moreover, make sure you lubricate the pins on the caliper with a silicon-based high-temp lubricant to help it function correctly. DO NOT use oil-based products such as WD-40 or brake fluid, as they will cause corrosion and do not last for very long. With grease officially on your hands, push the new pads into place in a fashion that matches the old pads. You can also replace the pads by using a C-clamp to push the caliper piston back into place. Just place the clamp over the outer part of the caliper and put pressure on the clamp until the pad slides back into place. New pads slid into place, swing the caliper back down over the rotor, and torque the bolts that hold it in place to spec. Over-tightening or applying too little torque can be very dangerous. Note that certain brake pads come with shims, whereas others require you to purchase them separately. These thin pieces of metal help keep everything quietly in place and eliminate the risk of improper pad positioning. If your car has ABS, then there is no need to bleed the brake system when replacing the pads as it is automatically done by the system itself. However, if you have a non-ABS vehicle, then bleeding is recommended in order to get rid of any air bubbles that may be trapped in the system. Simply hold down the brake pedal and open up all of the bleeders on your vehicle one by one. Simply place a properly sized hose over the bleeder screw, submerge the other end of the hose in a clear bottle or cup of brake fluid, and ask a buddy to mash the brakes while the bleeder screw is open. Tell them to keep pumping the brakes until no more bubbles come out in the clear container you are holding. Close up the bleeder screw and repeat the process on all four corners. Finish by spraying the calipers and rotors down with brake parts cleaner. After bleeding, reinstall the tires, and take the vehicle out for a quick test drive to check if everything is working properly. Gentle pumps of the brake pedal, followed by a build-up to repeated hard braking will help ensure the pads are broken in properly. Brake pad replacement should be done every two years or 60,000 kilometers. This will ensure that your car stops properly. So if you feel like your brakes are not working correctly, then it is best to have them checked by a mechanic as soon as possible. Best Australian brake pad manufacturers Repco Repco brake pads have been made in Australia since 1987, and are of the highest quality available. All of their pads come with a full 12-month warranty, so you can be sure that your investment will last as advertised. Their brake pad product line includes most major vehicle brands […]