For $20,000, Vanagon Baby Gone.

Nice Price Or Crack PipeIs this used car a good deal? You decide!

In simplest terms, form drag derives from the shape and frontal area of an object moving through a fluid (or gaseous) medium, requiring ever greater expenditure of energy in compensation. Today’s Nice Price or Crack Pipe Vanagon has Subaru power to help overcome its physical form created resistance, but will its price still prove to be. . . kind of a drag?

Yesterday’s conceptually wild - and motivationally mild VW disguised as a Renault Dauphine was undeniably audacious. It’s vote however indicated equivocation regarding its asking price, and it fell in a narrow 55% Crack Pipe loss. Still, I really, really want that thing.


Since we just had a Renault that swallowed a pretty fly Vee-dub, we now need to restore order in the universe by sacrificing another marque to the People’s Car gods, and today our victim, er volunteer, is Subaru.

This 1989 Volkswagen Vanagon Carat shuns the home country wasserboxer for a water cooled flat four from the Land of the Rising Sun. Said to be a new motor, the Subaru EJ257 2.5 litre has traded its former WRX duties for 20/20 hindsight in the silver brick.

The DOHC engine is rated at about 300-horses depending on the year, and it achieves such ponylicious heights of power by way of a turbocharger and air-to-air intercooler. Subaru booty calls to VW Vanagons are not uncommon, and goes to show that the Germans and Japanese haven’t lost their touch when comes to global collusion.


In front of the Subie-doo sits. . . an automatic transmission? Um. . . WTF, people? Okay, it is claimed to have been roided up with Audi internals so the WRX mill doesn’t make it shit the bed at the first throttle peg, but still, talk about a major boner deflater.


Other than the slusher, there’s a lot to like about this silver box. First off it has a massive bra. That should not only be easier to take off than a real lady’s boulder holder, but will also serve as a cozy blanket should you get stuck somewhere where there's a chill. Being a Carat model means that it was fully loaded when it drove off the showroom floor (although I thought the Carat was only available on ‘90 and ‘91 models), and there has been a ton of cash dumped into the interior since to make it even more fancy.

It’s a little hard from the ad to tell where all that money went as the seller's concept of focus doesn't seem to extend beyond Ford's product line, and every one of his snaps makes me want to reach for my reading glasses. I can tell that it’s running on some Benz wheels that bring the bling, and supposedly those are wrapped in new meats. It also doesn’t appear to have any missing trim or hobo barnacles and thus shouldn’t offend the neighbors when parked on the front lawn.


With so much more power under your right foot one factor of the Vanagon's nature should be given even greater scrutiny and that’s the fact that the car’s energy absorption properties in the event of an accident includes your lower limbs. These cars aren’t as deadly as you might imagine, but cab-forwards will always be less forgiving of frontal impacts than the average bear. Increasing the speed at which they might occur is only adding fuel to the fire that will eventually engulf you after you smack that freeway abutment.


Okay, enough with being a Debbie Downer, let’s get to brass tacks. This Subaru-powered Vanagon is claimed to have been professionally built, and is said by its seller to be nigh-on perfect. With that in mind, and seeking to set the world right, what do you think about its $20,000 price tag?

That’s a lot schnitzel for the schnell, but then again who doesn’t like a WRXagon? What do you think, does this van’s fuzzy ad make it seem like it’s worth that kind of sharp cash? Or, is this a Vanagon that's dragged down by its price?


You decide!


Seattle Craigslist, or go here if the ad disappears.

Help me out with NPOCP. Click here to send a me a fixed-price tip, and remember to include your commenter handle.

Share This Story