Camouflaged Courier Conspicuously Courts $850!

Illustration for article titled Camouflaged Courier Conspicuously Courts $850!

Little trucks are cool. Painting your mini truck camo is cool. Being named Skeet is cool. But selling your camo truck for under a grand and having it appear on Nice Price or Crack Pipe means you're the ice man.


Volvos have always been cool in that kind of way that hipster fashion also made porkpie hats something that not just men in illustrated ‘50s cigarette ads wore on purpose. But throwing in a V8 sends the hipsters running and turns the boxy Swede into a sweet tire chirper. That fact was not lost on the 79% of you that sent yesterday's '80 245 V8olvo to the Nice Price place, and proved that if there's one thing Americans know who to do, it's make a decent pushrod V8.

But back at the end of the 1960s, American auto makers were finding out that that wasn't enough, and that the car buying public was gaining a taste for smaller vehicles. Their attempt at bandwagon riding - exemplified by the Pinto, Gremlin and Vega - demonstrated that building small cars wasn't a forte at the time.

Thankfully, there was plenty of production capacity overseas in the factories of car companies who knew how to screw together a decent little car, and hence we got Crickets and Colts, Fiestas and Geos. And while looking through the catalog of available wares, the U.S. makers found that Foreign Cars Я Us also had some little trucks that might make fine Fords, Chevys and Dodges, so they ordered up some of those.

The mini truck revolution rivaled the French Revolution for class warfare and the eventual rise of the underclass. One of the warriors battling on the front line was the Mazda-sourced Ford Courier. A demitasse to the F150's grande, the Courier, and it's competitor the Chevy Luv, became coveted by both the lawn care industry and newspaper delivery persons nationwide.

This 1982 Ford Courier is from the last year of the model and sports either the 2.0-litre base or the full-brazilian 2.3-litre four pot. It's a stick and the seller says it comes with a new clutch and brakes, as well as a replaced radiator. It has also been painted in camouflage. If you're in the military, that may not be a big deal, but for the rest of us, the thought of driving what is essentially an invisible truck is mind blowing. The ad is pretty straight forward, and, unlike recent contenders, the seller appears to have full command of the English language and doesn't seem to be glossing over any major issues or attempting to polish a turd here. One thing that he notes which could be a problem is that the tail lights don't work. That would be an issue in a regular truck, but in one that's been painted to blend into its surroundings, not having brake lights means you're more likely to get rear ended than if you were to bend over to tie your shoelace in the Castro.


Non-functioning tail lights aside, the truck looks to be in pretty decent shape. I mean, I think it does, it's blending in to the background in these photos so well it's hard to tell. There's a tool box in back, in case you're a tool, and new tires on the steelies keep the four corners out of the mud. Other than that, there's not much of a description to the truck- no mileage, no baloney.

Now you might think, after all the work that has gone into this truck - brakes, radiator, invisibility cloak - that the seller would be asking both the moon and the stars for this beauty, but Skeet would like to get $850 for his '82 Courier, which makes it one of the lowest priced vehicles ever to grace a NPOCP.


But is it worth that kind of scratch? Would you pay Skeet $850 for his camo Courier? Or, much like the truck, do you have a hard time seeing doing that?

You decide!


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Back in the day, we had a '76 Courier, last year with the 1.8 and first year with the 5-speed. Ours had both, and in fifth on the flat, that little truck would just cruise right along, no sweat. Except we lived in northern VA, where flat isn't that common since we share a lot of topography with West Virginia. So on anything less than flat in fifth gear, the little Courier would slooowly loooooose velocity. Not enough beans to twist that top cog under a load. But damn, did it ever get good mileage. Crikey, you'd think it was actually wringing the tank for every last drop. 35 was the average.

We put a top on ours, threw some cushions and sleeping bags in, and my brother and I actually enjoyed the ride to Minnesota for the first time. Room to move, room for the cat (weird trip, traveling with a cat), room for books and snoozing and everything. In fact when we stopped for the overnight, I slept in the truck.

For the memories alone, it's a nice price. For the extra power of the bigger engine, it's a very nice price. And if you're going to shoot camo on your truck, photograph it in a parking lot. Cheap rattlecan job or not, the truck actually does kinda fade away in a couple of the shots against a wooded background.