Over the last several years, we have been replacing many of the full-sized pickups we use in our campground business with mini-trucks from Japan. They are cheaper to insure, cheaper to buy, easy to repair, and get about 60 miles to the gallon. We typically buy them used in container-loads of six or seven, and we used to get them for less than $10,000 a container -- now they cost almost this much individually.
This year the prices have sky-rocketed, and they have been hard to find. I finally discovered the reason. It seems the EPA has halted their importation. These are trucks that are from an emissions regime (in Japan) harsher than ours and that have three times the gas mileage of the trucks they are replacing. But apparently the EPA doesn't have rules for them and doesn't know how to categorize them, and anything a bureaucrat doesn't have rules for must be illegal, right? So now we are forced to go back to full-size pickup truck purchases until the EPA can catch up with the market.
Update: Apparently the EPA is going to review these trucks model by model. This is so stupid. They need some kind of class waiver.