Wow! Lots of responses...lots of them emotional too :)
I'll try to shed some more light on my needs, or muddy up the waters
My first trucks were F-150's, al early '70s models. My only new truck
was a '87 F-150 (then the union went on strike, and I couldn't afford it
anymore...). My last two trucks were GMC versions of the S-10 and S-15.
In the Sonoma (S-10 copy if I remember right), for sheet goods, I rested
them on the wheel wells and used a inverted U of 2x6's on the tailgate.
The wieght of the goods held it in place.
I hate diesels.
I hate bemoth SUV's (Hummer, expedition, etc).
I like my Windstar minivan, but it can't carry sheet goods with the rear
door closed. I have to tie a rope to the plastic loop handle and the
other end of the rope to a seat armrest.
It sounds like 4 door is a must, as I must haul the kids frequently (I
hate driving my wifes grand-am...it hurts my back to sit in that thing
for extended periods), espectially on family trips.
Towing capability is a must (Most trucks will easily haul our pop-up
camper without a towing package). If I get another van, it must have a
factory installed towing package.
Cruise and automatic tranny are required. AC is nice, but optional.
Power steering pretty much comes standard on everything these days.
we cannot afford new, so we are looking used, '99 or later. Under 20K,
4WD is preferred but not necessary...this'll be my hunting rig too!
One of the smaller SUV's might fill the bill...I'm not familar with
them, but I'll be looking!