Big jobs need big trucks, and it was right about the time that this 1996 Ford F150 XLT Super Cab 4×4 was built that these trucks really started to take off and dominate the market for Ford

With 5.8L V8 power, a stylish, styleside short bed that’ll carry anything, and a gorgeous extended cab interior that’s in great condition, this affordable Ford 4×4 truck with is on the cusp of “modern classic” status and can be driven and enjoyed across the country with nary a worry. And with a rare ‘RV Special Package’ both inside and out, it’s a uniquely good-looking truck with loads of period-perfect curb appeal.

The big, squared-off style of the ’90s F-series works particularly well with two-tone paint, especially a grown-up color combination like Light Saddle Metallic over Light Brown Metallic. Crisply rendered and very butch, this rig looks like it could pull an ocean liner out of the water, or pull up to the valet at a Michelin Star restaurant and not be escorted to the loading dock. That’s factory paint, right down to the swooping black ‘V’ pinstripe work that plays the role of demarcation between the contrasting shades, and it’s extremely well-maintained for being 25 years old (yes, 25). Sure, it’s not perfect, but for the mileage it’s very impressive and only shows minor signs of use, and a proper buff-and-wax could really bring it up a notch or two and get people talking about what an amazing truck you found. The big chrome grille, oversized mirrors, paint-matched long step bars, bed rails, and, even the toolbox add to the rugged feel, although you’ll ultimately discover that this pickup is pretty darned civilized. The bed has been used but not abused, and we’d recommend a spray-in or drop-in bedliner to maintain it’s mostly dent-free appearance. It has lived its entire life in Texas with just two owners, both of whom took great care of the truck and because it lived down South, there are no critical structural issues to worry about on the body or anywhere underneath. Get in and put it to work!

Inside, the original Mocha cloth stock cabin was updated with fresh tan vinyl upholstery on the buckets and a wide center console up front, and they do a great job to match the rear bench. The upholstery is in great condition and the big cab feels downright spacious, even with the mini bench in back. Original carpets are still in good shape thanks to matching vinyl floormats that protect them, as are the matching door panels, taut color-keyed headliner, and the wide dash area that is very clean and only has on small hairline crack to speak of. For a leisure-themed hauler like this, you’re going to want options, and they come via Ford’s Preferred Equipment Package: cold A/C, power windows and locks, electric mirrors, cruise control, ABS brakes, driver’s side airbag, and a tilt steering column. Even the original AM/FM/cassette stereo and clock head unit is still in the dash, as are all the original A/C controls. Big, bright gauges offer a comprehensive view of the engine’s condition and with 192,815 original miles, you guys familiar with these trucks understand that this one still has a long life ahead of it. A giant rear window is a nice feature, giving the cab a fishbowl feel, and we have to say that climbing in this truck feels like coming home; who didn’t have an F-Series back in the ’90s?

Ford’s venerable 5.8L cubic inch V8 was built with trucks like this in mind. With modern EFI on top, it’s a torque factory and shrugs off the biggest loads you can put behind it. The big low-RPM engine isn’t stressed, so it will run practically forever and despite a number of modifications available for these trucks, this one remains bone stock, from the twin intake snorkels to the original catalytic converter on the factory exhaust. It’s very tidy but not overly detailed under the hood, but just being pretty isn’t this truck’s only job, it can put the work in too. Ford’s tough electronic 4-speed automatic overdrive transmission offers good gearing to make the most of the small block’s torque curve and a tall overdrive that turns highway hauls into relaxing road trips. Optional equipment also gives this 4×4 the off-road package that was so popular back then, with factory skid plates, an enhanced handling package, manual locking front hubs, and a limited slip front/rear axles that all help this Ford’s trail credentials. Clean Southern living is most visible underneath, where it’s extremely clean and well-preserved, from the Twin-I-Beam front suspension to the gigantic rear end, which has 3.55 factory gears inside. It’s stanced exactly how it left the factory and sits on factory forged aluminum wheels wrapped in 31×10.50×15 Starfire white-letter truck radials.

Price: $17,995

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Location: Fort Worth, Texas, United States