Pick of the Day: 1978 Subaru Brat 4×4

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Pick of the Day: 1978 Subaru Brat 4×4

As a young dude in the mid-1980s I could never figure out the Subaru Brat that was owned by one of my grandparent’s neighbors. It looked like a truck but the backward facing seats mounted in the bed gave it a funky appearance. Also, it was illegal to ride in the bed of truck in California and that made it even more confusing for me.

Subaru Brat, Pick of the Day: 1978 Subaru Brat 4×4, ClassicCars.com Journal
1978 Subaru Brat 4×4 with seating for two

In the ensuing three decades I still look at a Subaru Brat with a curiosity, intrigue and suspicion that should be reserved for the ending of an M. Night Shyamalan movie. My son had a lot of questions when I described the Brat to him. I guess being confused and somehow intrigued by the Brat runs in the family.

Subaru Brat, Pick of the Day: 1978 Subaru Brat 4×4, ClassicCars.com Journal
1978 Subaru Brat 4×4

Brat is an acronym for “Bi-drive Recreational All-terrain Transporter”, which under current standards sounds like an SUV, crossover, or a side-by-side. Subaru developed the Brat to compete in the American small-truck market and the addition of the two jump seats mounted in the truck bed led to the vehicle being classified as a passenger car, as opposed to a truck that would have higher import tariffs. This work around led to funky truck, ute or whatever genre you consider the Brat.

The Pick of the Day is a 1978 Subaru Brat 4×4. It’s listed for sale on ClassicCars.com by a dealer in Cadillac, Michigan. (Click the link to view the listing)

The listing indicates that the Brat’s interior and exterior received a restoration but there are some rough spots. It’s powered by a 1.6-liter four-cylinder engine with a two-barrel carburetor and the engine is paired with a four-speed manual transmission. The front and rear brakes have been serviced and the factory stock wheels have new tires, including the spare.

The ClassicCars.com Journal

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